HARDER was sunk August 24, 1944, after six wartime patrols, under Commander Sam Dealey, Destroyer Killer. HARDER was famous for sinking five Japanese destroyers in four days. An incredible feat. Sam Dealey was the first and only skipper of HARDER.
I had the pleasure after the war, in meeting with Captain Frank Lynch, who had skippered other subs. Frank had sent my copy of Through Hell and Deep Water: Authored by Admiral Charles A. Lockwood, and Colonel Hans Christian Adamson USAF to Admiral Lockwood. “Uncle Charlie” sent my book back with a glowing endorsement of HARDER and its exploits. Captain Lynch, along with now Admiral Jack Maurer, survived the sinking of HARDER off the coast of Luzon, in the South China Sea on August 24, 1944.
As Admiral Thomas Kinkaid wrote on May 11, 1956, “I am proud to have served in the war time Seventh Fleet with Sam Dealey.”
There were many tributes to the HARDER and her record of accomplishments, including a compliment by General Douglas McArthur, sent through Admiral Lockwood, to Commander Sam Dealey, stating “The recent exploits and achievements of your submarine were magnificent. My congratulations.” General McArthur presented the army DSC to Sam Dealey and its gala crew, as well as the Navy Cross presented by Admiral Lockwood.
My first cousin, Larry A. Opisso served all 6 patrols of the HARDER, as MoMM1, and went down with HARDER. It is in his honor and memory, I respectfully submit the enclosed.
“There are no roses on a sailors grave, No lilies on an ocean wave. The only tribute is the seagull’s sweeps, and the tears that a sweetheart weeps.”
Sincerely, Lawrence J. Opisso Twin Dolphins