French, Lawrence, CAPT

 Service Photo   Service Details
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Last Rank
Last Primary NEC
310X-Supply Corps Officer
Last Rating/NEC Group
Line Officer
Primary Unit
1950-1954, 1955, Naval Reserve Forces Command
Service Years
1943 - 1969

 Last Photo   Personal Details 

Home State
Year of Birth
This Military Service Page was created/owned by Carl Mottern (The White Buffalo), AW1 to remember French, Lawrence, CAPT.

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Contact Info
Home Town
Last Address
San Diego, California

Date of Passing
Feb 09, 1987
Location of Interment
Not Specified
Wall/Plot Coordinates
Not Specified

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  2014, Famous People Who Served [Verified] - Assoc. Page

 Additional Information
Last Known Activity

Information gathered from Gary BedingFields Web Site, "Baseball In Wartime".

Larry French


Date and Place of Birth: November 1, 1907 Visalia, California

Died: February 9, 1987 San Diego, California

Baseball Experience: Major League
Position: Pitcher
Rank: Lieutenant
Military Unit: US Navy

Area Served: European and Pacific Theaters of Operations


Larry French

Lawrence H “Larry” French was born in Visalia, California on November 1, 1907. He attended the University of California at Berkeley before embarking on a professional baseball career.

Before entering military service on January 8, 1943, French had won 197 games with the Pirates, Cubs and Dodgers. He appeared in three World Series, was selected for the 1940 National League all-star team, and his .789 winning percentage (15 wins and 4 losses) in 1942 was the circuit's best.

French served as a lieutenant with the US Navy Supply Corps, providing spare parts for landing craft. He played his only service baseball games of the war in England, after arriving there in December 1943. In his first outing in mid-April, French allowed just three hits in an 8-1 win over an opposing Navy team.


Lieutenant French later served on the USS New York during the Okinawa invasion. He was recalled to active service during the Korean War and made the Navy a career, retiring in 1969 having attained the rank of captain.

Larry French passed away in San Diego on February 9, 1987. He was 79.

Other Comments:
Sponsors Note:   I recently learned of the Navy service of former Major League Baseball Pitcher, Lawrence "Larry" French.  It seems little information is available on his Navy servce, so I would be glad to accept and appreciate any information for inclusion.  This profile will be quite incomplete, but is intended to honor Larrys service none the less.

World War II/Asiatic-Pacific Theater/Okinawa Gunto Operation
From Month/Year
March / 1945
To Month/Year
June / 1945

The Battle of Okinawa, codenamed Operation Iceberg. was fought on the Ryukyu Islands of Okinawa and was the largest amphibious assault in the Pacific War of World War II. The 82-day-long battle lasted from early April until mid-June 1945. After a long campaign of island hopping, the Allies were approaching Japan, and planned to use Okinawa, a large island only 340 mi (550 km) away from mainland Japan, as a base for air operations on the planned invasion of Japanese mainland (coded Operation Downfall). Four divisions of the U.S. 10th Army (the 7th, 27th, 77th, and 96th) and two Marine Divisions (the 1st and 6th) fought on the island. Their invasion was supported by naval, amphibious, and tactical air forces.

The battle has been referred to as the "typhoon of steel" in English, and tetsu no ame ("rain of steel") or ("violent wind of steel") in Japanese. The nicknames refer to the ferocity of the fighting, the intensity of kamikaze attacks from the Japanese defenders, and to the sheer numbers of Allied ships and armored vehicles that assaulted the island. The battle resulted in the highest number of casualties in the Pacific Theater during World War II. Based on Okinawan government sources, mainland Japan lost 77,166 soldiers, who were either killed or committed suicide, and the Allies suffered 14,009 deaths (with an estimated total of more than 65,000 casualties of all kinds). Simultaneously, 42,000–150,000 local civilians were killed or committed suicide, a significant proportion of the local population. The atomic bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki together with the Soviet invasion of Manchuria caused Japan to surrender less than two months after the end of the fighting on Okinawa.
My Participation in This Battle or Operation
From Month/Year
March / 1945
To Month/Year
June / 1945
Last Updated:
Mar 16, 2020
Personal Memories

Service on USS NEW YORK.

My Photos From This Battle or Operation
No Available Photos

  997 Also There at This Battle:
  • Abbott, Earl James, Cox, (1943-1946)
  • Adams, Richard W, PO2, (1943-1947)
  • Albanesi, Thomas, PO1, (1943-1946)
  • Bagby, Henry Lawton, CAPT, (1941-1970)
  • Baldwin, Robert B., VADM, (1941-1980)
  • Baruzzini, Joseph Louis, LCDR, (1944-1964)
  • Baylor, Warner, LCDR, (1942-1963)
  • Beam, Joe, MCPO, (1941-2004)
  • Bell, Lloyd, PO3, (1942-1948)
  • Bibb, James, PO2, (1942-1945)
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