I took particular interest in your Long Beach local news section lead story last Sunday titled "A Deep Affection" (July 11) about the USS Barbel (SS580). The story was well done and interesting. I served as a quartermaster on the Barbel during 1965-66; my job was navigation. Most of the story was on target. However, there was one big factual error in the story. Your story states that the Barbel played no role in the Vietnam War. I can assure you that the Barbel did play a role in the Vietnam War since I was on board that ship while it was on patrol in the war zone.
As far as I know, the Barbel was the only submarine to sustain damage in the war zone. Because the details concerning that particular war zone patrol are classified, I cannot tell you any more about what happened.
Again, thanks for the article, and be assured the Barbel and her crew were Vietnam veterans.
Mayor, city of Cerritos