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Flowers left for James Arbes
Awarded for actions during the World War IIThe President of the United States of America takes pleasure in presenting the Navy Cross to Lieutenant Commander James Douglas Arbes (NSN: 0-79041), United States Navy, for extraordinary heroism in operations against the enemy while serving as Pilot of a carrier-based Navy Scout Dive Bomber and Squadron Commander of Bombing Squadron EIGHT (VB-8), attached to the U.S.S. BUNKER HILL (CV-17), during the attack on the Japanese Battle Fleet in the First Battle of the Philippine Sea on 20 June 1944. Lieutenant Commander Arbes, as squadron commander of twelve dive bombers, showed unusual skill and conspicuous courage in directing his squadron in the face of accurate and intense anti-aircraft fire of all calibers, which included heavy fire from the main batteries of the large fleet units. Particularly outstanding was his calmness and courage when ordered to proceed beyond the combat radius of his airplane in order to attack the main Japanese Battle Fleet. As a result of his personal leadership, damaging hits were scored on an aircraft carrier of 15, 000 tons resulting in its probable destruction. He personally scored a direct hit during this attack. In addition, damaging bomb hits were scored on a battleship and a cruiser. Throughout this operation he conducted himself with complete disregard for his personal safety despite damage to his plane from anti-aircraft fire, and directly contributed to the success of the operation. His conduct throughout the operation was in keeping with the highest traditions of the Naval Service.General Orders: Commander Fast Carrier Task Force Pacific: Serial 0279 (August 3, 1944)Action Date: 20-Jun-44Service: NavyRank: Lieutenant CommanderCompany: Bombing Squadron 8 (VB-8)Division: U.S.S. Bunker Hill (CV-17)
- chuck cummins
 Added: Oct. 31, 2011

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