Enzo Grossi

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Enzo Grossi
Born (1908-04-20)20 April 1908
São Paulo, Brazil
Died 11 August 1960(1960-08-11) (aged 52)
Corato, Italy
Allegiance  Kingdom of Italy
Service/branch Regia Marina (Navy)
Rank Capitano di Vascello
Commands held Barbarigo
Battles/wars World War II
Awards Medaglia d'oro al valor militare
Knight's Cross of the Iron Cross

Enzo Grossi (20 April 1908 in São Paulo, Brazil and died 11 August 1960 in Argentina; was an officer in the Regia Marina (Italian Navy) during World War II.

During World War II he commanded the U-Boote Medusa and Barbarigo. He claimed that on May 20, 1942 he attacked and sank a Maryland-class USN battleship. He also believed that he surface attacked and sank a Mississippi-class USN battleship on October 6, 1942. Both of these attacks were proved to be unsuccessful and Mussolini's order to promote Grossi to Capitano di Fregata and the prestigious award of Medaglia d'oro al valor militare was premature. (Luigi Rizzo, a World War I naval hero was honred with the same highly prestigious award, who sank the Austro-Hungarian battleship Szent Istvan).[1]

After the war it was declared that he was not entitled to the honors and he was demoted to the infantry private rank. One of the ships at which he had fired in vain was the corvette Petunia.[2] Italian Naval researchers carefully researched Grossi's claims and came to conclusions how the failed attacks might have occurred and left Grossi in the belief that he successfully attacked and sank the major battleships.




  1. ^ "Little Known Facts". Forum on "Little Known Facts". Retrieved 28 February 2011. 
  2. ^ Kurowski 1995, p. 307.


  • Fellgiebel, Walther-Peer (2000) [1986]. Die Träger des Ritterkreuzes des Eisernen Kreuzes 1939–1945 — Die Inhaber der höchsten Auszeichnung des Zweiten Weltkrieges aller Wehrmachtteile [The Bearers of the Knight's Cross of the Iron Cross 1939–1945 — The Owners of the Highest Award of the Second World War of all Wehrmacht Branches] (in German). Friedberg, Germany: Podzun-Pallas. ISBN 978-3-7909-0284-6. 
  • Kurowski, Franz (1995). Knight's Cross Holders of the U-Boat Service. Atglen, PA: Schiffer Publishing. ISBN 978-0-88740-748-2.