The Bird Class minesweeper Vireo was built by Philadephia Navy Yard and commissioned in 1919. She carried two 3.5-inch anti-aircraft guns and displaced 840 tons. On 7 December she was moored alongside her sister ship Bobolink south of Hospital Point.
Soon after 2100 hours on 7 December, a flight of six fighters from the carrier Enterprise led by Lieutenant Francis Hebel (Hebel, Francis) approached Ford Island. In spite of orders having been given to hold fire, someone opened up and soon the anti-aircraft fire was intense. One of the victims was Ensign Eric Allen. He bailed out and his aircraft splashed down near Pearl City. Allen himself was shot as he parachuted down. He was picked up by Vireo and quickly transferred to hospital with a suspected ruptured liver. He died soon after arrival.