Final Dive by Rick Cline
The Gallant and Tragic Career of the WWII Submarine USS Snook

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The book begins with the birth of the USS Snook and brief and interesting background information about submarine warfare, submarine ships, and the "Silent Service" of the U.S. Navy in WWII. About 260 U.S. submarines patrolled the Pacific in WWII, 52 were lost, 48 to hostilities. While comprising a mere 2% of the total tonnage of the U.S. Navy, U.S. submarines accounted for 60% of the damage done to Japanese commercial and military ships. The Silent Service was also the most dangerous of all branches of the military, even the air force, with a greater percentage of total submarine officers and crew being lost, than in any other branch of the United States Military. Each subsequent chapter of the book is devoted to the nine war patrols of the Snook, with an added chapter about the change in command after Snook's first captain, Charles Triebel, was assigned elsewhere. The chapters read faster and better than many suspense novels, and it is all true. You learn about the commanders of the Snook, Chuck Triebel, one of the Navy's most successful submarine commanders and later a Rear Admiral; George H. Browne; and then John F. Walling, with his disappointing and punishing Polar Circuit Patrol and then the tragic Ninth and final patrol. The chapters include fascinating vignettes about other famous submarines and commanders, the Harder under Commander Sam Dealy, the Wahoo, and information about the Silent Service's lifeguard service in picking up downed airmen. There is a fine glossary of terms to help the reader understand the fast-paced narrative.

About Rick Cline

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Published May 1, 2001 by R. A. Cline Publishing. 235 pages
Genres: History, War. Non-fiction