Smith, Robert Holmes, CAPT

Deceased
 
 Service Photo   Service Details
8 kb
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Last Rank
Captain
Last Primary NEC
112X-Unrestricted Line Officer - Submarine Warfare
Last Rating/NEC Group
Line Officer
Primary Unit
1943-1943, 112X, COMSUBGRU 2/COMSUBRON 2
Service Years
1919 - 1943
Official/Unofficial US Navy Certificates
Order of the Golden Dragon
Neptune Subpoena
Panama Canal
Plank Owner
Captain
Captain

 Last Photo   Personal Details 

336 kb

Home State
North Carolina
North Carolina
Year of Birth
1898
 
This Military Service Page was created/owned by Bersley H. Thomas, Jr. (Tom), SMCS to remember Smith, Robert Holmes, CAPT.

If you knew or served with this Sailor and have additional information or photos to support this Page, please leave a message for the Page Administrator(s) HERE.
 
Contact Info
Home Town
Harrellsville
Last Address
Rocky Mount, North Carolina

Date of Passing
Jan 21, 1943
 
Location of Interment
Not Specified
Wall/Plot Coordinates
Not Specified

 Official Badges 




 Unofficial Badges 

Order of the Shellback Order of the Golden Dragon


 Military Association Memberships
United States Naval Academy Alumni AssociationMilitary Order of Foreign Wars of the United StatesSubmarine Veterans of WW IIMilitary Order of the World Wars (MOWW)
  1919, United States Naval Academy Alumni Association [Verified] - Assoc. Page
  1941, Military Order of Foreign Wars of the United States [Verified] - Assoc. Page
  1943, Submarine Veterans of WW II
  1945, Military Order of the World Wars (MOWW)


 Additional Information
Last Known Activity

                  USS Sperry USS Proteus USS Dixon SanDiego 1985.jpeg

USS Sperry (AS-12) was a Fulton-class submarine tender in the United States Navy. She was named for Elmer Sperry.


Sperry
was laid down on 1 February 1941 at the Mare Island Navy Yard, Vallejo, California; launched on 17 December 1941, just 10 days after the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor; sponsored by Mrs. Helen Sperry Lea, daughter of Elmer Ambrose Sperry; and commissioned on 1 May 1942, Captain Robert H. Smith in command.

Born in Harrellsville, North Carolina, CAPT Smith graduated from the Naval Academy on 6 June 1919. After duty in various surface ships, he served with the Submarine Service for 17 years. He commanded USS Bonita (SS-165), was an instructor at the New London submarine school, a member of the Naval Academy staff, Submarine Gunnery Officer with the Bureau of Navigation, Navigation Officer in USS Pennsylvania (BB-38), and Chief of Staff for Submarine Division, Atlantic Patrol Force. Following promotion to captain, he commanded USS Sperry (AS-12) in the Pacific from May 1942 to January 1943.


He was Commander of Submarine Squadron 2, Pacific Submarine Force, when he died in the crash of the Philippine Clipper flying boat in Northern California on 21 January 1943.
 

   
Other Comments:


Legion of MeritBronze Star

Rank/Rate Captain
Service Number 0-055994
Birth Date August 8, 1898
From Rocky Mount, North Carolina
Decorations Legion of Merit, Bronze Star
Command COMSUBRON 2
Loss Date January 21, 1943
Location Near Booneville, California, north of San Francisco
Circumstances Killed in the crash of the Philippine Clipper
Remarks Robert was born in Harrellsville, North Carolina.
He had just been relieved of command of USS Sperry.



 

   
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World War II/European-African-Middle Eastern Theater
Start Year
1941
End Year
1945

Description
The European-Mediterranean-Middle East Theater was a major theater of operations during the Second World War (between December 7, 1941, and March 2, 1946). The vast size of Europe, Mediterranean and Middle East theatre saw interconnected naval, land, and air campaigns fought for control of the Mediterranean, North Africa, the Horn of Africa, the Middle East, and Europe. The fighting in this theatre lasted from 10 June 1940, when Italy entered the war on the side of Germany, until 2 May 1945 when all Axis forces in Italy surrendered. However, fighting would continue in Greece – where British troops had been dispatched to aid the Greek government – during the early stages of the Greek Civil War.

The British referred to this theatre as the Mediterranean and Middle East Theatre (so called due to the location of the fighting and the name of the headquarters that controlled the initial fighting: Middle East Command) while the Americans called the theatre of operations the Mediterranean Theatre of War. The German official history of the fighting is dubbed 'The Mediterranean, South-East Europe, and North Africa 1939–1942'. Regardless of the size of the theatre, the various campaigns were not seen as neatly separated areas of operations but part of one vast theatre of war.

Fascist Italy aimed to carve out a new Roman Empire, while British forces aimed initially to retain the status quo. Italy launched various attacks around the Mediterranean, which were largely unsuccessful. With the introduction of German forces, Yugoslavia and Greece were overrun. Allied and Axis forces engaged in back and forth fighting across North Africa, with Axis interference in the Middle East causing fighting to spread there. With confidence high from early gains, German forces planned elaborate attacks to be launched to capture the Middle East and then to possibly attack the southern border of the Soviet Union. However, following three years of fighting, Axis forces were defeated in North Africa and their interference in the Middle East was halted. Allied forces then commenced an invasion of Southern Europe, resulting in the Italians switching sides and deposing Mussolini. A prolonged battle for Italy took place, and as the strategic situation changed in southeast Europe, British troops returned to Greece.

The theatre of war, the longest during the Second World War, resulted in the destruction of the Italian Empire and altered the strategic position of Germany resulting in numerous German divisions being deployed to Africa and Italy and total losses (including those captured upon final surrender) being over half a million. Italian losses, in the theatre, amount to around to 177,000 men with a further several hundred thousand captured during the process of the various campaigns. British losses amount to over 300,000 men killed, wounded, or captured, and total American losses in the region amounted to 130,000.
   
My Participation in This Battle or Operation
From Year
1941
To Year
1942
 
Last Updated:
May 12, 2017
   
Personal Memories

Memories
Chief of Staff for Submarine Division, Atlantic Patrol Force

   
Units Participated in Operation

USS Andres (DE-45)

 
My Photos From This Battle or Operation
No Available Photos

  225 Also There at This Battle:
  • Beckwith, John Edward, S1c, (1942-1945)
  • Brennan, James, PO3, (1942-1946)
  • Brown, Perry Thompson, C.B., (1942-1945)
  • Brown, Ronald, SCPO, (1943-1968)
  • CORY, AL, MCPO, (1940-1970)
  • Coyne, Terence Augustine, CPO, (1942-1945)
  • Crawforth, Evan, PO2, (1942-1945)
  • Daiute, Carroll Paul, PO1, (1942-1945)
  • Evans, Scott
  • Fitzpatrick, Walter, CAPT, (1940-1963)
  • Freeman, William, PO2, (1941-1945)
  • Garrett, Earl, PO2, (1941-1953)
  • Harper, John Jacob, LTJG, (1942-1946)
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