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David Charles Richardson

1914 - 2015 Obituary Condolences Gallery
David Charles Richardson Obituary
Richardson, David Charles SAN DIEGO -- Vice Admiral David Charles Richardson passed away peacefully in his San Diego home on Saturday, June 13, 2015. He died at age 101. His family was with him and celebrated his life well lived. David was born in Meridian, Mississippi in 1914, the only child of Isaiah and Anne Kate Richardson. He earned the rank of Eagle Scout, graduated from Marion Institute and attended the United States Naval Academy. He graduated with the class of 1936, and after two years on the battleship Tennessee, was assigned to flight training in Pensacola, Florida and earned his wings in 1940. Reporting to Fighting Squadron Five, David flew F3F's and F4F's. In 1942 he saw action when he flew off the USS Saratoga, was credited with the first kill of a Japanese "May" seaplane while under control of the USS Saratoga, and then to Guadalcanal, where he shot down three additional enemy aircraft and was himself shot down. He earned his Distinguished Flying Cross, Bronze Star, Air Medals and Purple Heart during that action. Later in the war he commanded Fighter Squadron One. Following WWII, David studied at the Royal Navy Staff College in London and then spent two years at the Naval War College in Newport, Rhode Island as a student and staff. He commanded Carrier Air Group 13 during the Korean War and served in mid-career staff tours including naval aviation planning for both Europe and the Pacific. Additional commands included USS Cimarron and the aircraft carrier USS Hornet where he won the Battle Efficiency Award. With promotion to Rear Admiral, David commanded Carrier Division Five/CTF-77 off Viet Nam. In 1968 he was selected for Vice Admiral and assumed command of US Sixth Fleet based in Gaeta, Italy. In 1972 he retired as Deputy Commander, Pacific fleet based in Pearl Harbor, Hawaii and his family returned to Julian, California. Following his naval service, David began consulting and advising in the exploitation of intelligence and in the technology of command and control of naval forces. He served many years on national intelligence panels, including the Naval Research Advisory Committee and was a member of the Naval Intelligence Advisory Board. On his 95th birthday, David received a formal recognition for his significant contributions to naval intelligence. All of his successes were made easier with the love and support of his beloved wife of 58 years, Jeanne. In 1955 David married Jeanne M. Simonds, a Navy widow and mother of Caprice. He had two sons from a previous marriage, David and Robert. They combined both families and added three more children of their own, Ruthanne, Schamber and Samuel. For many years the family enjoyed their Mammoth Lakes condo in the mountains of California where they fished the streams and lakes in summer and skied in winter. They saw all six children graduate from colleges across the country and remained involved in their lives. David and Jeanne enjoyed residing in a Julian cabin Jeanne had built in the 1960s, a home David had built in Coronado in the 1940s, and Jeanne's home in San Diego built by her family in 1920s. Throughout his retirement, David remained active in the Episcopal Church, the Julian CA Lions Club, QED, Golden Eagles, Tailhook Association and various military intelligence organizations. David was preceded in death by his wife Jeanne in June, 2014 and his son David W. (Commander retired) in May of 2015. Surviving David is Caprice (Dan), Robert, Ruthanne (John), Schamber (Mark), Sam (Beth) (Captain, retired), and daughter-in-law Margaret. He has twelve grandchildren and two great-grandchildren, two sisters-in-law and various nephews and nieces. Services will be held Thursday, July 16, 2015, at 10:00 AM at All Saints Episcopal Church in San Diego with a private burial with full military honors at Miramar National Cemetery. Being ever mindful of the needs of others, David Richardson exemplifies distinguished military leadership and caring support of family. He remains in our hearts and minds forever. The Richardson family would like to thank Toshimi Villarubbia and Ong Lee for their loving caregiving and to the entire Vitas Hospice Group.

Published in The San Diego Union Tribune on July 3, 2015
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