Richard V. Gragg
1943 - 2020
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Captain Richard V. Gragg, USN, Retired, passed away with his wife by his side September 14th, 2020 after a long battle with cancer. Richard was born on December 27th, 1943 in Alma, Illinois to his mother, Rhea M. Purcell and his father Ora Vernon Gragg. The youngest of three children, Richard began work at an early age, securing a newspaper delivery route in the 5th grade and later working in his father's farm equipment business while attending high school in Centralia, Illinois. After graduating from high school, Richard went on to attend college at Southern Illinois University, graduating in 1967. Richard began his 30 years of service with the United States Navy after college. Receiving his commission in May, 1967, at the Officer Candidate School in Pensacola, Florida. After he served in Vietnam as a Naval Intelligence Liaison Officer at Cam Ranh Bay with the Navy "Market Time" patrol forces, he then supported Seal Team 1 and the Twenty First ARVN Division in Bac Liiu. He received the Bronze Star Medal for Valor for his service in Vietnam. Richard went on to serve with pride and devotion in Japan, Iceland, Singapore, Hawaii, San Diego, Operation Desert Storm, the Pentagon, and on the USS Independence, USS Midway, USS New Jersey, USS Missouri, USS Saratoga, and the USS Long Beach. He received a Master of Science in Information Technology from Syracuse University in 1997 while in the Navy. After retiring from the Navy in 1997, Richard tirelessly supported our Armed Forces and the Intelligence Community as a Department of Defense contractor working for Polexis, CACI, and the University of Maryland Eastern Shore. He directly supported a number of defense agencies during this period which included the Naval Research Lab (NRL), the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA), the Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA), and the Defense Information Systems Agency (DISA) at Ft Meade, Maryland. At DISA, he was Chief of the Integrated Imagery and Intelligence (I3) branch for the Global Command and Control System - Joint (GCCS-J) program that the Armed Forces depend on around the world. He retired in 2014 to his home in Annapolis, Maryland where he sponsored many midshipmen of the U.S. Naval Academy. While stationed in Japan, Richard met his loving wife of nearly 47 years, Mayumi Oha. Mayumi, who worked for Japan Airlines when they met, shared the excitement and adventure of traveling the world and immersing themselves in different cultures. Together they traveled and lived in many different countries. They went on to have a daughter, Erica, and a son, Ken. Richard had such a passion to explore the world and meet new people that he and Mayumi traveled abroad even while he was undergoing treatment for cancer. He had a true love and acceptance of people of all faiths and ethnicities. He found joy in studying religion and history, sailing on the Chesapeake Bay, and indulging his small grandchildren. Richard is survived by his wife, Mayumi Gragg of Annapolis, Maryland, his sister, Sue Campbell, and brother-in-law Rich Campbell of Traverse City, Michigan. He leaves behind two children, Erica Chambers of Washington, DC and Ken Gragg of Asheville, North Carolina, his grandchildren Kai and Koda Gragg and his daughter-in-law, Bianca Gragg of Asheville, North Carolina. He was preceded in death by his brother, John Gragg of Manvel, Texas, his mother Rhea M. Gragg, and his father Ora Vernon Gragg. A memorial service will be held at St. Margaret's Episcopal Church on Saturday, September 26 at 11:00 am. Due to Covid19 restrictions, in-person attendance will be limited. The family invites all guests to attend virtually. Live stream information can be located via Richard's Tribute page at Interment at Arlington National Cemetery will take place at a future date.

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Published in The Capital Gazette on Sep. 20, 2020.
Memorial service
11:00 AM
St. Margaret's Episcopal Church
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7 entries
September 25, 2020
Eternal Affection Arrangement- BASKET INCLUDED
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Joseph Innes
September 24, 2020
My wife, Katsumi, and I had the pleasure of meeting Richard and Mayumi while stationed in Hawaii with the Navy. Although we were not part of the same occupational communities, we shared the same love of service, family, and lasting friendships. Our young children were of the same age, and have many fond memories of our family get togethers.
We've stayed in touch over the years and cherish the times we have been able to have personal contact. Mayumi and Katsumi share their bonds of Japanese heritage and have kept in touch by phone throughout the nearly past 40 years. Richard, you are sorely missed and our hearts go out to the family at this difficult time.

Joseph Innes, CAPT, DC , USN (Ret)
Joseph Innes
Served In Military Together
September 22, 2020
I met Richard and Mayumi once during a port call (USS America CV-66) to Singapore where he was attached to the Embassy. They hosted Larry Clarke, Jim Cox and I on a tour of the island, capping it off with dinner at a local restaurant that rarely saw foreigners so hungry. We never crossed paths again, but Richard provided one of those moments which I can recall in vivid detail nearly 40 years later.

Thank you Richard, and God Bless you for a life lived well,
Charles Hess, CDR (Ret)
Charles Hess
Served In Military Together
September 21, 2020
He was a fellow shipmate on board USS Midway and later a predecessor member of Polexis staff. Great shipmate, outstanding professional, and wonderful individual. Great Loss. Fair Winds and Following Sea Shipmate
Richard Violette, CDR, USN Ret.
Served In Military Together
September 21, 2020
When my wife & I moved from a tour in Japan to the Pentagon, Rich was the first person to welcome us when we visited a new Church where we became members. He was all the things and more described in his obituary. He will be missed.
Walt Wilson
Served In Military Together
September 19, 2020
I knew Dick as a child in Alma, Illinois. Good family. My deepest condolences to his family and I certainly aporeciate his service to our country. RIP Dick. God's Blessings to you and your family.
Dianne Barksdale Collins
September 17, 2020
I am Dick's cousin. We both spent our earliest years in Alma, IL. Dick was 1 years older than me, and I always looked up to him as older and smarter than I was. I can remember staying over at his house, sleeping in the breezeway of their house, which I thought was so cool. I remember he was the first to get an “English” bike, (one with gears and narrow tires), and being jealous. Later his family moved to Mt. Vernon, and, for some reason I can remember visiting, and watching Gunsmoke on tv with Dick and his father Pete. After that we didn't see each other much, but I always heard from one relative or another about Dick's Navy career, which seemed both exciting and dangerous. In later years, our paths crossed mainly at the funerals of family members. My dad, and many of my uncles, served in WW2, and Dick always showed up, and stood up, and spoke about the importance of serving the country in times of need. That is something that will always stay with me, and I'm sure many of my relatives. So I wish I could be at the service to do the same for him. To Mayumi and all of his family, I am sorry for your loss, and know that Dick's extended family was very proud of him.

Steve Doolen
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