Black, Charles Alden, Sr., CDR

 Service Photo   Service Details
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Last Rank
Last Primary NEC
163X-Special Duty Officer - Intelligence
Last Rating/NEC Group
Line Officer
Primary Unit
1952-1961, Naval Reserve Forces Command
Service Years
1941 - 1952

 Last Photo   Personal Details 

105 kb

Home State
Year of Birth
This Military Service Page was created/owned by Steven Loomis (SaigonShipyard), IC3 to remember Black, Charles Alden, Sr. (Charlie), CDR.

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Contact Info
Home Town
Oakland, CA
Last Address
Not Specified

Date of Passing
Aug 04, 2005
Location of Interment
Not Specified
Wall/Plot Coordinates
Not Specified

 Official Badges 

WW II Honorable Discharge Pin

 Unofficial Badges 

US Navy Honorable Discharge US Naval Reserve Honorable Discharge

 Additional Information
Last Known Activity
US Navy, WWII and Korea
Awarded the Silver Star

Charles Alden Black, born in Oakland on March 6, 1919, was a businessman and maritime expert, as well as the husband of former child star Shirley Temple Black.

Charles Black was the son of James Byers Black (1890-1965) and Katherine McElrath (1899-1984) of San Francisco, CA; grandson of John Edgar McElrath (1844-1907) and Elsie Ann Alden (1845-1936) of Oakland, and great-grandson of Solomon E. Alden.

Black attended Stanford University, where he earned both his bachelor's and master's degrees in Business.  During World War II, he served as a naval intelligence officer in the southwest Pacific, first in Australia on Gen. Douglas MacArthur's staff, then with the 7th Fleet squadrons of motor torpedo boats. He was awarded the Silver Star for gallantry in action.During the Korean War, he was recalled to serve in naval intelligence in Washington, D.C., returning to the reserves in 1952 with the rank of commander. Black also served as a regent for Santa Clara University and helped established a youth charity.

Shirley Temple and Charles Black met in Honolulu, Hawaii in 1950, where Black had been working for a shipping company and got married that same year.  Together they had two children: a son, Charles Jr.; a daughter, Lori, as well as raising Shirley Temple's daughter Susan, from her first marriage to John Agar.

The couple moved from Hawaii back to California, where Black started a fishing and hatchery company and worked as a consultant on maritime issues. He also served on a Commerce Department advisory committee as well as various national Research Council panels.

Black co-founded a Massachusetts-based company that developed unmanned deep-ocean search and survey imaging systems.

Charles Black died in 2005 at the age of 86 from complications of a bone marrow disease.
Other Comments:
Mr. Black was born in Oakland -- he descended from John Alden, one of the Mayflower pilgrims, and the Cherokee Indian chief Oconostota, his family said. He was raised in San Francisco, educated at the Hotchkiss School in Connecticut, and got his bachelor's degree from Stanford University in three years. He joined the Navy in 1941, and as an intelligence officer in the Pacific made more than 100 PT boat patrols. He also served as a scout behind enemy lines in Indonesia. Among several medals, he was awarded the Silver Star, one of the nation's highest for valor.

After the war, Mr. Black moved to Tahiti and, indulging his lifelong love of the sea, eventually sailed a small boat back to the United States over 7, 000 miles of ocean.  During the Korean War, he was recalled to serve in naval intelligence in Washington, D.C., returning to the reserves in 1952 with the rank of commander.
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 Unit Assignments/ Advancement Schools
School Assignments - StaffCommander in Chief Pacific Fleet (CINCPACFLT)/Commander Pacific Fleet (COMPACFLT)COMSEVENTHFLTOffice of Naval Intelligence (ONI)
Naval Reserve Forces Command
  1941-1941, Direct Commission Officer School
  1941-1941, Naval Intelligence Training Course (NITC)
  1942-1943, Naval Counterintelligence Support Group Pacific
  1943-1945, Commander, Motor Torpedo Boat Squadrons, Seventh Fleet, COMSEVENTHFLT
  1945-1950, Naval Reserve Forces Command
  1950-1952, 163X, Office of Naval Intelligence (ONI)
  1952-1961, Naval Reserve Forces Command
 Combat and Non-Combat Operations
  1941-1945 World War II
  1950-1952 Korean War
 Colleges Attended 
Stanford UniversityHarvard UniversityStanford University
  1937-1940, Stanford University
  1940-1941, Harvard University
  1945-1946, Stanford University
 Other News, Events and Photographs
  Jan 26, 1984, Citation: Ronald Reagan
  Aug 04, 2005, LCdr. Charles Alden Black2
  Aug 04, 2005, Charles Black, the man behind Shirley Temple
  Aug 10, 2005, Obituary: Charles Black, marine expert, dies
  Feb 12, 2014, General Photos2
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