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Sunday, September 15, 2013

No Good Deed Goes Unpunished: Joseph Rochefort

Joseph Rochefort was a US Navy intelligence cryptanalyst who correctly identified that the Japanese were going to attack the US base at Midway island. Unfortunately, his commander John Redman disagreed and complained to his brother (a high-ranking admiral) to get Rochefort reassigned to supervising a dry dock. Later, Redman commanded a battleship and after the war he was in charge of naval communications.

Rochefort's contribution was critical to the overwhelming US victory at Midway which broke the back of the Japanese navy. Although Admiral Nimitz, commander of the US Pacific fleet, recommended Rochefort for a Navy Distinguished Service Medal, Rochefort declined saying it would only cause trouble.

Rochefort received no recognition during the war. He was awarded The Navy Distinguished Service Medal and the Presidential Medal of Freedom 10 years after his death.  

Rochefort got Billy Mitchell'd....

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