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Philip Howard Jacobsen

JACOBSEN, PHILIP HOWARD LCDR. USN Ret. Phil passed away on Tuesday, August 22, 2006, at the age of 82 from pancreatic cancer. He was at home surrounded by his loved ones. Born in Madera, California, March 15, 1924 of Danish immigrant parents Hans Jacobsen and Frances Helm, Jake as he was affectionately known, at the age of 17 in June, 1941 enlisted in the Navy right after completing high school in Hayward. He was sent to boot camp at San Diego. From there he was sent to Hawaii. He and his radio school class were in the first convoy to reach Pearl Harbor about 10 days after the attack, in time to see the horrendous aftermath. In late March, 1942 he and 17 of his classmates were sworn into the OP-20-G Organization at Wahiawa, HI and were trained in the Japanese naval radio communications including the Kata Kana telegraphic code. He was on watch at station H during the Battle of Midway. In October 1942, he volunteered for duty in the Pacific combat zone and was sent to Guadalcanal and served six months during the fighting there at Station AL a small intercept, direction finding, analysis, decrypting and reporting station. He later contracted malaria and jaundice and was sent to Aiea, Hawaii, and from there eventually to Imperial Beach, CA in 1945. He then was stationed at numerous locations, including Port Blakely, Washington; Du Pont, S.C., Adak, Alaska, Kamiseya, Japan, and Naval Security Group Washington, D.C. From D.C., he was transferred to the Sixth Fleet where he served as an Intelligence Officer aboard the Flagship U.S.S. Salem. From there Jake was transferred to Turkey, and then back to NSA Fort Meade, MD. His sea duty also included a tour of duty on one of the first voyages of the world's first nuclear powered submarine, the U.S.S. Nautilus. He also was stationed at Guam in the Marianas Islands, Naval Radio Station Hawaii, again in Washington, D.C. and finally back to Imperial Beach, California where he retired with 28 years service. During his service he became proficient in both the Japanese and Russian languages. Phil retired, he continued his education, attending the University of Nebraska at Omaha where he received his undergraduate degree. He then returned to San Diego and earned a Juris Doctorate Degree at the University Of San Diego School of Law. He then went into private practice for a year before moving to Guam. On Guam he was appointed the Attorney General for the Government of Guam before once again returning to San Diego. Upon his return to San Diego, he worked for the Tax Collectors Office, where he soon became the Chief Deputy Tax Collector for the County of San Diego. After 14 years with the county, Jake decided to once again retire. After his second retirement, Phil became a noted researcher, authority and author of numerous articles concerning factual Cryptologic history before and during World War II. He also researched and wrote articles about the U.S. Navy's success at code breaking which led to the spectacular Naval victory at the Battle of Midway, helping to turn the tide of war in the Pacific. He has appeared as a consultant on a "Secrets of War" television documentary entitled "Codebreaking in the Pacific during World War II". He was writing a book which was near completion at the time of his passing. Phil belonged to many organizations, including Naval Intelligence Professionals, Naval Cryptologic Veterans Association, The Midway Round Table, and the Danish Lodge. He lived a long and fruitful life, but nothing gave him as much pleasure as writing and researching things "Navy" and spending time with family. He leaves his wife of 61 years, Bessie Jacobsen, his daughter Jeanne Lambdin, and his son Philip Hans Jacobsen. Jake also had two grandchildren and six great-grandchildren. Additionally he left many other relatives and friends both in civilian and military life. A viewing is scheduled from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m. Monday, August 28, 2006 at Humphrey Mortuary, Chula Vista. Services are scheduled at 10 a.m. the following day, August 29, 2006, at the mortuary, followed by interment at Greenwood Memorial Park, San Diego which will include full military honors. There will be a reception afterwards at South Bay Fish and Grill at the Chula Vista J Street Marina.Please sign the guest book at obituaries.uniontrib.com
Published in The San Diego Union Tribune on Aug. 27, 2006
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