Leonard Roy Harmon was born at Cuero, Texas, on 21 January 1917. He enlisted in the Navy in June 1939 and was assigned to USS San Francisco (CA-38) following training. During the Naval Battle of Guadalcanal, 13 November 1942, while serving aboard that ship, Mess Attendant Harmon assisted in evacuating and caring for the wounded. He deliberately exposed himself to enemy gunfire while attempting to protect a shipmate and was killed in action. For his heroism, Leonard Roy Harmon was posthumously awarded the Navy Cross.
Two Navy ships were named in honor of Mess Attendant First Class Leonard Roy Harmon. The first, Harmon (DE-72), was transferred to the British Royal Navy in June 1943, prior to completion, and was renamed HMS Aylmer. The second ship, USS Harmon (DE-678), served actively from 1943 to 1947 and remained in the Reserve Fleet until 1967.
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Photo #: NH 69652
Leonard Roy Harmon, Mess Attendant First Class, USN
Poster featuring Mess Attendant Harmon and USS Harmon (DE-678), which was named in his honor. He was killed in action on board USS San Francisco (CA-38) during the Naval Battle of Guadalcanal, 13 November 1942. For his heroism in that action, Mess Attendant Harmon was posthumously awarded the Navy Cross. The poster also features the text of his award citation and a representation of the Navy Cross medal.
U.S. Naval Historical Center Photograph.
Online Image: 86KB; 600 x 765 pixels
Text revised 2 February 1999