Close-up, in-flight view of a US Navy Douglas SBD Dauntless “35” piloted by Lieutenant Commander George Thomas Glacken (left) with his gunner Leo Boulanger, near New Guinea, during Palau air raid attack, 30 March 1944. Photo by LIFE photographer J.R. Eyerman. Glacken (18 December 1916 – 4 May 1990) would received the Navy Cross in 8 July 1944 for “extraordinary heroism in operations against the enemy while serving as Pilot of a carrier-based Navy Dive Bomber in Bombing Squadron SIXTEEN (VB-16), attached to the U.S.S. LEXINGTON (CV-16), in action against enemy Japanese forces in the First Battle of the Philippine Sea, on 20 June 1944. Participating in a long-range attack on major units of the Japanese Fleet, Lieutenant Glacken skillfully maneuvered his plane to evade determined fighter opposition and intense enemy anti-aircraft fire in the ensuing action and assisted essentially in the sinking of a large enemy aircraft carrier, in the probable sinking of another large carrier and in shooting down two enemy fighter planes. Upon fulfillment of the critical mission, Lieutenant Glacken succeeded in completing the long return flight to base and in effecting a safe night landing aboard the LEXINGTON. His cool courage, skilled airmanship and devotion to duty throughout this decisive action reflect the highest credit upon Lieutenant Glacken and the United States Naval Service.”