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Adapted from "Rear Admiral Edward J. Fahy, United States Navy, Retired" [biography, dated 26 September 1969] in Modern Biographical Files collection, Navy Department Library.

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  • nhhc-topics:ship-construction-and-design
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  • nhhc-document-types:Biography
Wars & Conflicts
  • nhhc-wars-conflicts:world-war-ii
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Edward Joseph Fahy

8 May 1910-25 October 1989

Edward Joseph Fahy was born in New York, New York, on May 8, 1910, son of John Joseph and Elizabeth (Cryan) Fahy, both now deceased. He attended St. Francis Xavier High School in New York City, prior to entering the US naval Academy, Annapolis, Maryland, on appointment from his native state in 1930. As a Midshipman he won his “N” in gym; was a member of the varsity track team; Exchange Editor of the “Log”; Debating member of the Quarterdeck Society and was Regimental Commander. He received the Sword of the Class of 1897 (awarded the Midshipman Regimental Commander) and the Sword of the Class of 1987 (awarded the Midshipman who contributed most by his officer-like qualities and positive character to the development of naval spirit and loyalty within the regiment). Graduated with distinction, twelfth in the Class of 1934, and commissioned Ensign on May 31, that year, he subsequently advanced in rank, attaining that of Rear Admiral, to date from April 1, 1962.

Following graduation from the Naval Academy in 1934, he was ordered to the Navy Yard, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, where he had fitting out duty in the USS Tuscaloosa. He joined that cruiser upon her commissioning, August 17, 1934, and subsequently participated in the cruiser’s shakedown cruise to Barbados, Buenos Aires, Montevideo, Rio de Janeiro and Martinique. In January 1937 he reported as Communications Watch Officer on the Staff of Commander Cruiser, Scouting Force and between January and June 1938 had submarine training at the Submarine School, New London, Connecticut.

In July 1938 he reported on board the USS Permit and in July 1941 was detached for instruction in electronic engineering at the Postgraduate School, Annapolis, Maryland. He continued his construction, July-August 1943, at the Massachusetts Institute of technology at Boston, after which he had brief training at the Prospective Commanding Officers School, Submarine base, New London, Connecticut. In October 1943 he was assigned as Prospective Commanding Officer of the USS Spearfish and in January 1944 joined the USS Plunger as Navigator. He assumed command of that submarine on March 13, 1944. For outstanding services while attached to the Plunger he was awarded two Letters of Commendation, with authorization to wear the Commendation Ribbon and Bronze Star in lieu of the Second Commendation Ribbon, from the Commander in Chief, US Pacific Fleet. The citations follow in part:

Letter of Commendation (Combat “V”): “For meritorious service as a member of the crew during the Tenth War Patrol of the Plunger from January 13, to March 8, 1944, during which time that vessel conducted highly aggressive torpedo attacks against heavily escorted enemy shipping, sinking four enemy freighters totaling 22,500 tons. His high degree of efficiently, devotion to duty and coolness in the face of serve enemy countermeasures were of the utmost assistance to his Commanding Officer in pressing home these successful attacks and in conducing evasive tactics during periods of enemy depth charge attacks…”

Letter of Commendation (Combat “V”) “For meritorious conduct… as Commanding Officer of the USS Plunger during the Twelfth War Patrol of that vessel in the vicinity of Truk, Carolina Islands, from July 23 to September 14, 1944… (He) launched a successful attack which resulted in sinking a 5, 00 ton enemy vessel. He skillfully evaded serve enemy countermeasures and brought his ship safely back to port…”

He is also entitled to the Ribbon for, and a facsimile of the Navy Unit Commendation awarded the USS Plunger.

In October 1944 he reported as Electronics and New Developments Officer on the Staff of Commander Training Command, Submarine Force, Pacific. “For exceptionally meritorious conduct... (In that assignment during operations against enemy Japanese forces from October 1944 to September 1945…” he was awarded the Legion of Merit. The citation further states in part:

“Expertly supervising tests and evaluating and developing new electronics equipment, Commander Fahy assisted in providing the Submarine Fore with important devices which greatly increased the offensive and defensive capacity of Pacific Fleet Submarine. By his thorough understanding of communications between aircraft and submarines, he contributed directly to the notable accomplishments of lifeguard submarines…”

Assigned in November 1945 to the Bureau of Ships, navy Department, Washington, DC he served as Director of the Electronic Division and the Ship and Amphibious Division, until July 1949 after which he was Electronics Officer at the Norfolk (Virginia) Naval Shipyard. He remained there until May 1951, then joined the Staff of Commander Submarine Force, Atlantic as Force Material Officer. In November1953 he became Commanding officer and Director of the Underwater Sound Laboratory, New London, Connecticut and from May 1956 to August 1958 had duty at the Mare Island (California) Naval Shipyard. He next served as Assistant Chief of the Bureau of Ships for Research and Development, navy Department. On July 14, 1961 his selection for the rank of Rear Admiral was approved by the President.

In March 1962, he reported as Commander Mare Island naval Shipyard, Vallejo, California, with additional duty until July 1962 as Industrial Manager, Twelfth Naval District and on the Staff of the Commandant of the Twelfth Naval District. In May 1965 he became Commander San Francisco Bay Naval Shipyard, Vallejo, California, with additional duty as Commander, mare Island division, San Francisco Bay naval Shipyard and in February 1966 assumed duty as Chief of the Bureau of Ships, navy Department. Upon the reorganization of the Navy Department, effective May 1, 1966, he was designated Commander Naval Ship Systems Command. He continued to serve as such until relived of active duty pending his retirement, effective August 1, 1969.

In addition to the Legion of Merit, the Commendation Ribbon with Bronze Star and Combat “V,” and the Navy Unit Commendation Ribbon, Rear Admiral Fahy has the American Defense Service Medal, Fleet Clasp; American Campaign Medal; Asiatic-Pacific Campaign Medal; World War II Victory Medal; and the National Defense Service Medal with bronze star.

END

Published: Tue Jun 08 15:15:30 EDT 2021