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Last Rank
Last Primary NEC
111X-Unrestricted Line Officer - Surface Warfare
Last Rating/NEC Group
Line Officer
Primary Unit
1964-1968, 9420, Panama Canal Zone
Service Years
1940 - 1968

 Last Photo   Personal Details 

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Home State
Year of Birth
This Military Service Page was created/owned by Steven Loomis (SaigonShipyard), IC3 to remember DERTIEN, Donald (Don), CAPT USN(Ret).

If you knew or served with this Sailor and have additional information or photos to support this Page, please leave a message for the Page Administrator(s) HERE.
Contact Info
Home Town
Muskegon, MI
Last Address
In 1992, Don and Tish moved to the Indian River Colony Club in Viera, FL. They moved to Ocala, FL, in 2006 and in 2011, moved to Gainesville and resided at The Village.

Date of Passing
Oct 19, 2015
Location of Interment
Bushnell National Memorial Cemetery - Bushnell, Florida
Wall/Plot Coordinates
Not Specified

 Official Badges 

WW II Honorable Discharge Pin US Navy Retired 30

 Unofficial Badges 

Pearl Harbor Memorial Medallion US Navy Honorable Discharge US Naval Reserve Honorable Discharge Order of the Golden Dragon

 Military Association Memberships
Navy League of the United StatesMilitary Officers Association of America (MOAA)
  1950, Navy League of the United States - Assoc. Page
  1950, Military Officers Association of America (MOAA) [Verified] - Assoc. Page

 Additional Information
Last Known Activity

Captain Donald Alfred Dertien, USN (Ret.)
Pearl Harbor Survivor, Veteran of 
WWII, Korea and Vietnam era. 

Donald enlisted in the Navy in 1940, and he was commissioned an ensign in 1941 after successfully completing the Navy's "90-day wonder program" on the USS Arkansas (BB-33). He was stationed at Pearl Harbor and was aboard the USS Farragut (DD-348), at the time of the attack. The Farragut was berthed in a nest of destroyers in East Loch, Pearl Harbor, at the time of the Japanese attack on 7 December 1941. He was stationed on the Farragut until 1943 and was then transferred to another destroyer, the USS Halford (DD-480), until the end of the war. During his wartime service, he was awarded 11 battle stars including Guadalcanal, Wake Island, Coral Sea, Marianas Islands Campaign (Navy Commendation Medal) and Leyte Gulf (Bronze Star with Valor). In his quiet and humble manner, he was proud to have served his country at a crucial time in its history and to have been a Pearl Harbor survivor.

The brightest moment during this tumultuous time was when he married Tish on April 6, 1943, at St. James Cathedral in Seattle, WA, with shipmates from the USS Halford as the wedding party. They celebrated their 72nd wedding anniversary this past April.

After the conclusion of WWII, he returned to Muskegon for a short time only to discover that he missed the Navy and re-enlisted shortly thereafter. His Navy career included tours in Rhode Island, California, Washington, D.C., Japan, Korea and the Panama Canal Zone. He also served on the USS Rodman (DMS 21) and USS Helena (CA-75), and was the commanding officer of the USS Cony (DDE-508) during NATO Operation Mariner, USS Luzon (ARG-2) and USS Graffias (AF-29).

In between ship assignments, he earned his Bachelor's and Master's degrees and was the last Superintendent of the U.S Naval Weapons Plant in Washington, D.C. Near the end of his naval career, he was assigned to the Panama Canal Company in the role of Chief of the Navigation Division. The following year he was promoted to Marine Director, responsible for all direct operations of the canal. In December 1968, he retired from the U. S. Navy after more than 28 years of distinguished service attaining the rank of Captain in 1962.

He launched a second career with the Panama Canal Company, first as the Chief of the Executive Planning Staff then serving as the first civilian Marine Director. During this time he served as a technical advisor in the drafting and negotiation of the Panama Canal Treaty. He retired from the Panama Canal Company in 1976.

Other Comments:
Not Specified
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 Duty Stations
Officer Candidate School (OCS) (Faculty Staff)	USS Arkansas (BB-33)US NavyCommander Navy Reserve Forces Command (COMNAVRESFORCOM)
USS Helena (CA-75)USS Cony (DD-508)NAVSTA Washington DCJUSMAG Korea
USS Graffias (AF-29)Commander Naval Forces Japan
  1940-1941, 116X, Officer Candidate School (OCS) (Faculty Staff)
  1940-1941, 116X, USS Arkansas (BB-33)
  1941-1943, 111X, USS Farragut (DD-348)
  1943-1945, 111X, USS Halford (DD-480)
  1946-1946, 111X, Broken Service
  1946-1947, 111X, Naval Reserve Center (NRC) Providence, RI
  1948-1950, 111X, USS Rodman (DD-456)
  1951-1953, 111X, USS Helena (CA-75)
  1953-1955, 111X, USS Cony (DD-508)
  1956-1958, 111X, NAVSTA Washington DC
  1958-1960, 111X, USS Luzon (ARG-2)
  1961-1962, 111X, JUSMAG Korea
  1962-1963, 111X, USS Graffias (AF-29)
  1963-1964, 9420, Commander Naval Forces Japan
  1964-1968, 9420, Panama Canal Zone
 Combat and Non-Combat Operations
  1941-1943 Central Pacific Campaign (1941-43)/Air Strikes on Marcus and Wake Islands
  1942-1942 Central Pacific Campaign (1941-43)/Battle of the Coral Sea
  1943-1943 World War II/Asiatic-Pacific Theater/Guadalcanal Campaign (1942-42)
  1944-1944 Mariana and Palau Islands Campaign (1944)/Battle of Philippine Sea
  1944-1944 World War II/Asiatic-Pacific Theater/Mariana and Palau Islands Campaign (1944)
  1945-1945 World War II/Asiatic-Pacific Theater/Surrender of Japan, End of WWII
  1951-1952 Korean War/Second Korean Winter (1951-52)
  1953-1953 Korean War/Korean Summer (1953)
  1965-1968 Vietnam War
 Colleges Attended 
George Washington UniversityGeorge Washington University
  1937-1938, Muskegon Community College
  1939-1940, Tri-State University
  1956-1958, George Washington University
  1960-1961, George Washington University
 Other News, Events and Photographs
  Oct 19, 2015, Donald Alfred Dertien, Captain, U.S. Navy9
  Aug 23, 2016, General Photos1
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