Cmdr EUGENE FLUCKEY
Commanding U.S.S. Barb.
Off the Chinese coast
19 Dec 1944 to 15 Feb 1945.
As commanding officer of the U.S.S. Barb during her 11th war patrol. After sinking a large enemy ammunition ship and damaging additional tonnage during a running 2-hour night battle on 8 January, Comdr. Fluckey, in an exceptional feat of brilliant deduction and bold tracking, located a concentration of more than 30 enemy ships in the lower reaches of Nankuan Chiang.
If he were to risk an attack, it would require an hour’s run at full speed through the uncharted, mined, and rock-obstructed waters.
He ordered, “Battle station–torpedoes!”
In a daring penetration of the heavy enemy screen, and riding in 5 fathoms of water, he launched the Barb’s last forward torpedoes at 3,000-yard range. Quickly bringing the ship’s stern tubes to bear, he turned loose 4 more torpedoes into the enemy, obtaining 8 direct hits on 6 of the main targets to explode a large ammunition ship and cause inestimable damage by the resultant flying shells and other pyrotechnics.
Clearing the treacherous area at high speed, he brought the Barb through to safety and 4 days later sank a large Japanese freighter to complete a record of heroic combat achievement, reflecting the highest credit upon Comdr. Fluckey, his gallant officers and men, and the U.S. Naval Service.