HOCH, JR., USN (RET.) CAPTAIN JOHN EMERSON, died peacefully with his family by his side in Annapolis, MD on December 27, 2013 after suffering respiratory failure from pneumonia. "Jack" was born on 13 April 1929 in Brooklyn, NY, to Captain John Emerson Hoch, USN (Ret.) and Alice Miller Hoch. In 1947, Jack graduated from Moorestown Friends School in Moorestown, NJ. After two uninspiring years as a civilian at Rutg ers, Jack excitedly accepted an appointment to USNA. Commissioned on June 5, 1953, he became a naval aviator in January 1955. His distinguished career involved service with Patrol Squadrons Three and Seven, Air Antisubmarine Squadron 34, Heavy Attack Squadron One and as CO of Carrier Airborne Early Warning Squadron 122. He qualified in 18 types of Navy airplanes and served ship's company tours in USS INDEPENDENCE (CV-62) as Catapult and Arresting Gear Officer and in USS ENTERPRISE (CVN-65) as "Air Boss." Jack later assumed command of USS MISSISSINEWA (AO-144), then served on COMNAVSURFLANT and COMSERVGRU TWO staffs, ultimately acceding to command as COMSERVRON TWO in Mayport, FL. Jack's final tour returned him to aviation as E-2C program Project Manager. Jack's educational thirst was manifested by his MS degree in aeronautical engineering at the U. S. Naval Postgraduate School in Monterey, CA; graduating from the Naval War College in Newport, Rhode Island; completing the Senior Executives Course in the Sloan School of Management at MIT; and completing the Senior Officer Ship Material Readiness Course in Idaho Falls. Jack received numerous awards and recognition throughout his career, including the Legion of Merit, Bronze Star, and Navy Commendation Medal w/one star, among many others. Jack especially loved Navy Air, including the tight-knit squadron camaraderie. Those working for Jack universally respected his "firm but fair" leadership style and truly enjoyed serving with him. He took personal interest in his subordinates, resulting in their always giving him their best effort. Jack said that, if he could relive his career, he would do so in a heartbeat. On 1 August 1982, Jack retired from his beloved Navy, settling in Annapolis, and remained active with the Class of '53, supporting Navy sports and football in particular. Jack is survived by his loving and devoted wife of 53 years, the former Dorothy Joan Whittaker of Rockville Centre, NY; by his son, CDR John E. Hoch III, USNR (Ret.), USNA '83; his daughter-in-law Christine; and two teenage grandsons Spencer and Troy. A memorial service is scheduled for 10:30 a.m. May 8, 2014 at St. John Neumann's church in Annapolis, followed by a committal of service at the U.S. Naval Academy Columbarium. In lieu of flowers, donations to The Fisher House (www.fisherhouse.org/) would be appreciated. Online condolences may be left for the family at www.johnmtaylorfuneralhome.com
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Published in The Capital on Feb. 9, 2014