Naval History and Heritage Command

Naval History and Heritage Command

The Navy Department Library

Tags
Related Content
Sources

Adapted from "Rear Admiral Leo Adolph Bachman, United States Navy, Deceased" [biography, dated 24 January 1962] in Modern Biographical Files collection, Navy Department Library.

 
Topic
  • Operations
  • Intelligence
  • Justice and Discipline
Document Type
  • Biography
Wars & Conflicts
  • World War II 1939-1945
File Formats
  • Image (gif, jpg, tiff)
Location of Archival Materials
  • NHHC-Library

Leo Adolph Bachman

 

20 August 1902 – 8 February 1997

 

Photo of RADM Leo A. Bachman copied from page 242 of the 1924 edition of the U.S. Naval Academy yearbook 'Lucky Bag'.

Download PDF Version [162KB]

Leo Adolph Bachman was born on August 20, 1902, in Pulaski, Iowa.  He was graduated from the Pulaski High School before entering the US Naval Academy, Annapolis, Maryland from the Sixth Congressional District of Iowa in 1920.  Graduated and commissioned Ensign in June 1924, he subsequently attained the rank of Captain, to date from June 1, 1943.  On July 1, 1954, he was transferred to the Retired List of the US Navy and was advanced to the rank of Rear Admiral on the basis of combat awards.

After graduating from the Naval Academy in 1924, he served in USS California for two years and from December 1926, until June 1927, received instruction in submarines on board USS Chewink at the Submarine School, New London, Connecticut.  During the following four years, he served in USS R-20, operating with Submarine Division 14, Battle Fleet.  Following duty as Instructor in mathematics at the Naval Academy from 1931 until 1934, he returned to submarine duty, to serve as Aide and Flag Lieutenant, and Personnel Officer on the staff of the Commander Submarine Force, US Fleet, until June 1937.

He had duty under instruction in the Office of the Judge Advocate General, Navy Department, Washington, DC, from June 1937, until July 1940, and during this period completed a postgraduate course in Law at George Washington University, Washington, DC, receiving his Doctor of Laws Degree in June 1940.  While a student at George Washington University he won the Alexander Weddel prize for the best essay on promotion of International Peace and in 1940, was elected to the Order of the Coif.  He is a member of the District of Columbia Bar.

 

After serving as Engineer Officer in USS Arizona for eleven months, he became Aide and Flag Secretary on the Staff of Commander, Cruiser Division EIGHT, on July 8, 1941.  He was serving in that capacity at the outbreak of World War II and continued in this duty until April 1942, when he was transferred to duty as Operations Officer on the staff of Commander, Cruisers, Atlantic Fleet.

In May 1942, he became Aid and Flag Secretary on the Staff of Commander Amphibious Forces, Atlantic Fleet.  He continued Staff duty as Intelligence Officer and Assistant Planning Officer from the spring of 1943 with Commander, US Naval Forces, Northwest African Waters (Eighth Fleet), until detached on March 18, 1945.

For exceptionally meritorious service, he was awarded the Legion of Merit, and Gold Stars in lieu of the Second, Third and Fourth Legion of Merit, with the following citations:

Legion of Merit:  “For exceptionally meritorious conduct as Intelligence Officer on the Staff of the Commander United States Naval Forces, Northwest African Waters, during the initial invasion of the Island of Sicily in July 1943.  Charged with the responsibility of collecting, classifying and disseminating vital intelligence materials, (he) provided the planning section with highly important data n which to base its war plans.  His accurate supply of information concerning the strength of he enemy and the characteristics of the area of operations contributed in large measure to the success of the assault forces in attaining their assigned objectives with a minimum of personnel casualties and damages to equipment in this hazardous undertaking.”

Gold Star in lieu of the Second Legion Merit:  “For exceptionally meritorious conduct as an Officer on the staff of an amphibious force commander during the landings on the coast of French Morocco.  Captain Bachman resourcefully and energetically directed many varied activities, which produced accurate, vital foreknowledge of enemy forces, defenses and physical details of the hostile shore.  He also assisted in the formulation of sound plans for locating and timing the assault.  During the long months of preparation and later during the combat operations, through his thoroughness, sound judgment and professional skill, he contributed greatly to the success of the landings…”

 

Gold Star in lieu of the Third Legion of Merit:  “For outstanding services while serving as an Officer on the Staff of a Naval Task Force Commander prior to and during the invasion of Italy.  Captain Bachman, displaying outstanding skill and extreme thoroughness, directed the collection and correlation of important material for dissemination to all the various units comprising the Attack Force.  Under his energetic supervision, accurate information on enemy defenses, beach characteristics, meteorological data and other vital information were made available to the forces participating, which enabled them to develop sound and comprehensive plans for conducting the assault.  During the execution of the planned action and subsequent operations, his able administration of various agencies in the Force was responsible in large measure for the continuing receipt of valuable, up-to-the-minute information which formed a basis for sound command decisions and contributed materially to the success of the invasion…”

Gold Star in lieu of the Fourth Legion of Merit:  “For displaying outstanding skill and extreme thoroughness in directing the collection and correlation of important material for dissemination to all the various units comprising the assault force on the coast of Southern France.  Under his energetic supervision, accurate information on enemy defenses, beach characteristics, meteorological data and other information were made available to the forces participating, which enabled them to develop sound and comprehensive plans for conducting the assault.  During the execution of the planned action and subsequent operations, his able administration of the various agencies in the force was responsible in large measure for the continuing receipt of valuable, up-to-the-minute information which formed a basis for sound command decisions and contributed materially to the success of the invasions.”

In June 1945, he became Operations Officer on the staff of the Commander-in-Chief, US Fleet, Navy Department, Washington, DC, and the following year was transferred to duty as Assistant Director of Fleet Operations, under the Deputy Chief of Naval Operations (Operations).  He served in the latter capacity until June 1947, and then as Director until April 1949, when he assumed command of USS Albany.  In November 1949, he was assigned as Chief of Staff to Commander Military Sea Transportation Service with headquarters in Washington, DC.

During the period August 1950 to June 1951 he was a student at the National War College, Washington, DC, after which h had a month’s instruction at the Naval School, Naval Justice, Newport, Rhode Island.  In August 1951, he was assigned to the Office of the Judge Advocate General, Navy Department, where he continued to serve until relieved of all active duty pending his retirement, effective July 1, 1954.

In addition to the Legion of Merit with three Gold Stars, Rear Admiral Bachman has the American Defense Service Medal; European-African-Middle Eastern Campaign Medal; American Campaign Medal; the World War II Victory Medal; and the National Defense Service Medal.  He also has appointed a Commander of the Military Division of the Order of the British Empire “for distinguished service in the planning and execution of the operations which led to the successful Allied invasion of Southern France,”  and the Croix de Guerre with Silver Star by the Government of France for “distinguished service in operations leading to the liberation of France”

 

 

END

Published: Thu Aug 13 09:16:59 EDT 2020