From USNA Virtual Memorial Hall

Richard Martinelli '50

Date of birth: July 11, 1927

Date of death: July 18, 1949

Age: 22

Lucky Bag

From the 1950 Lucky Bag:


Richard was lost in an accident aboard USS Missouri (BB 63) while operating near Guantanamo Bay, Cuba. He was "pinned under a range finder during battle practice."

Other Information

From The Central New Jersey Home News, 20 Jul 1949: “During the present cruise to England, young Martinelli wrote several radio scripts that were used for midshipman broadcasts over the B. B. C. networks and beamed to America.”

From The Capital newspaper on July 21, 1949:

Martinelli enlisted in the Navy in 1945 after a year at Drexel Institute of Technology in Philadelphia. He was a seaman, first class, when he received an appointment to the academy from the secretary of the Navy.

Friends said he was one of the best students in his class. He ranked fifth after his plebe year and 11th after his third class year.

Martinelli left Annapolis with more than 800 other first and third classmen on June 4 for Portsmouth, England. The Missouri and other vessels in the squadron cruised into Guantanamo harbor July 8 and was due to leave yesterday to Hampton Roads, Va.

Memorial services were conducted by chaplain Commander Emil F. Redman aboard the Missouri that afternoon. Shipmates of the midshipman joined in … to supplement the scripture reading and band music.

Six of Martinelli’s closest friends at the Academy will be chosen to escort the remains from Norfolk, Va., to Westmont and act as pallbearers at the funeral. The commandant of the 4th Naval District Philadelphia will be in charge of other military honors at the services.

Martinelli would have been editor of the trident calendar this year. Besides his academic accomplishments, he won awards in gymnastic and golf.

From researcher Kathy Franz: "He graduated from Haddonfield Memorial High School in 1944. In his junior year, he was a reporter for the “Haddon Higher” newspaper."

Richard is buried in New Jersey.

Class of 1950

Richard is one of 37 members of the Class of 1950 on Virtual Memorial Hall.

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