Albert David

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Albert Leroy David (July 18, 1902 – September 17, 1945) was an officer in the United States Navy during World War II and a recipient of the Medal of Honor. He was awarded the Medal of Honor for his role in helping to capture a German submarine, the U-505, off the coast of French West Africa in June 1944.


Early life and career

Born in Maryville, Missouri David enlisted in the Navy at Kansas City, Missouri, on September 30, 1919. After undergoing his training at the Naval Training Station, San Francisco, he served on the battleship USS Arkansas (BB-33) for the rest of his first enlistment.

Reenlisting at Omaha, Nebraska, on July 19, 1921, David served his second enlistment in a succession of ships: USS New York (ACR-2), USS Preston (DD-327), USS Delaware (BB-28), USS Utah (BB-31), and USS Texas (BB-35), reenlisting on board Texas on May 12, 1925. He then served in USS Trenton (CL-11), USS Cincinnati (CL-6), and USS Salt Lake City (CA-25), reenlisting at Philadelphia, Pennsylvania on June 15, 1931.

He reported on board USS Dobbin (AD-3) on July 3, 1931, and served in that destroyer tender until his transfer to the Fleet Reserve on August 10, 1939.

World War II

David was recalled to active duty, though, on September 27, 1939, less than a month after World War II broke out in Europe with the German invasion of Poland.

Appointed machinist on May 13, 1942, David was assigned to the Submarine Repair Unit, San Diego, on May 28, and served in that unit for five months. While there, he received his promotion to ensign on June 15,. Reporting thence to the Naval Training School for diesel engineers at the Madison campus of the University of Wisconsin, for instruction, David ultimately reported for duty at the Naval Training Station, Naval Operating Base, Norfolk, before he traveled to Orange, Texas to assist in fitting out the destroyer escort USS Pillsbury (DE-133), which was commissioned at the Consolidated Steel Corporation yard on June 7, 1943.

Promoted to lieutenant (jg.) while Pillsbury was fitting out, David served in that ship as she operated in the Atlantic, escorting convoys into Casablanca and Gibraltar, and serving with a "hunter-killer" unit formed around USS Guadalcanal (CVE-60). He was serving as Pillsbury's assistant engineering and electrical officer when Guadalcanal's task group located a German submarine off Cape Blanco, French West Africa, on June 4, 1944 and forced it to the surface.

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