Gunners Mate Robert Paul Burr graduated from Navy Bomb Disposal Class #1-B. GMSN Burr was assigned to the escort carrier USS Guadalcanal (CVE-60). On 15 July 1944, the USS Guadalcanal had departed Norfolk, Virginia, for Bermuda on its fourth anti-submarine warfare (ASW) cruise, as part of Task Group 22.2. At 1025 hours, 16 July 1944, a Grumman torpedo bomber TBF-1D Avenger, Bureau Number 24511, Engine 34238, piloted by LT James E. Ogle III, USNR from Pennsylvania crashed at sea off the carrier’s starboard bow after being catapulted off. It was surmised that the aircraft had insufficient engine power, but couldn’t sustain flight. After the crash, one person was observed standing on the plane’s wing and then the plane’s armament exploded killing all three occupants including Gunners Mate Burr.
Gunners Mate Burr received the Legion of Merit Medal as part of boarding party number 2 from the USS Guadalcanal, involved in the capture of the Germany U-boat U-505 (Type IXC) on 4 June 1944 off the French West Africa coast. Gunner Burr rendered safe the demolition charges on board the U-Boat that was meant to scuttle the vessel.