From USNA Virtual Memorial Hall

Maximilian Schmidt '32

Date of birth: March 20, 1908

Date of death: January 5, 1944

Age: 35

Lucky Bag

From the 1932 Lucky Bag:


1932 Schmidt 1.jpg

Max was lost when USS Scorpion (SS 278) was sunk sometime after January 5, 1944. He had taken command on September 24, 1943 and successfully taken the boat on one war patrol before her loss.

His wife was listed as next of kin. He has a memory marker in Arlington National Cemetery.

From Find A Grave:

His loss left his widow, Elizabeth Hilliard Schmidt and two children: Elizabeth Anne Schmidt & Robert E. Schmidt. His parents, Max E. Schmidt and Louise Gmelich Schmidt are buried at the Walnut Grove Cemetery, Boonville, Cooper County, MO.


From Fleet Organization:

  • Under Instruction Postgraduate School United States Naval Academy 1939
  • Duty USS Wichita (CA-45) 1 Oct 1939 - 1 Jul 1940
  • Duty USS Walke (DD-416) Aug 1940
  • Navigator USS S-32 (SS-137) 1 Nov 1940
  • Executive Officer USS S-32 (SS-137) 1 Jul 1941 - 1 Oct 1941
  • Captain USS S-32 (SS-137) 31 Oct 1941 - 2 May 1943
  • Captain USS Scorpion (SS-278) 23 Sep 1943 - Jan 1944
  • Lieutenant (j.g.) 2 Jun 1935
  • Lieutenant 23 Sep 1939
  • Lieutenant Commander (T) 15 Jun 1942
  • Commander (T) 18 Nov 1942

Wartime Service

Max was previously commanding officer of USS S-32 (SS 137) (October 1941 - May 2, 1943) for that boat's first five offensive war patrols.

From Find A Grave:

CDR Maximilian G. Schmidt, born 10 Mar 1909 in Boonville, Cooper County, Missouri, was a graduate of the US Naval Academy at Annapolis, Maryland. His record includes USS Wichita (CA-45) 1 Oct 1939 - 1 Jul 1940, USS Walke (DD-416) Aug 1940, Navigator USS S-32 (SS-137) 1 Nov 1940, Executive Officer USS S-32 (SS-137) 1 Jul 1941 - 1 Oct 1941, Captain USS S-32 (SS-137) 31 Oct 1941 - 2 May 1943, Captain USS Scorpion (SS-278) 23 Sep 1943 - Jan 1944.

Navy Cross

From Hall of Valor:

The President of the United States of America takes pleasure in presenting the Navy Cross to Lieutenant Commander Maximilian Gmelich Schmidt (NSN: 0-71341), United States Naval Reserve, for extraordinary heroism in the line of his profession as Commanding Officer of the U.S.S. S-32 (SS-137), during the FOURTH War Patrol of that Submarine in waters adjacent to enemy occupied territory in the Northern Pacific during the period from 25 February 1943 to 20 March 1943. On 9 March 1943, Lieutenant Commander Schmidt pressed home a night surface attack on an enemy destroyer or mine layer and from close range, scoring one hit which caused a destructive fire on this vessel. His vessel was immediately counterattacked with depth charges by another vessel, but due to his coolness and skillful handling of his ship, he was able to retire with only superficial damage. On 13 March 1943, he made a successful night surface attack on an enemy submarine and on 15 March 1943, he made an additional successful submerged attack on another enemy submarine. His offensive action and his intrepidity, demonstrated by these attacks, were in keeping with the highest traditions of the United States Naval Service.

General Orders: Commander North Pacific Force: Serial 0197 (April 10, 1943)
Action Date: March 9, 1943
Service: Navy
Rank: Lieutenant Commander
Company: Commanding Officer
Division: U.S.S. S-32 (SS-137)

Silver Star

Unable to find the citation for the Silver Star he was awarded.

Class of 1932

Maximilian is one of 52 members of the Class of 1932 on Virtual Memorial Hall.