RICHARD H. PETERSEN, LTJG, USN

From USNA Virtual Memorial Hall
Richard Petersen '43

Date of birth: July 8, 1918

Date of death: March 26, 1944

Age: 25

Lucky Bag

From the 1943 Lucky Bag:

1943 Petersen LB.jpg

RICHARD HERMAL PETERSEN

Ogden, Utah

"Petsie" is his nickname. It is rumored that he was branded with this name by the girls of his home town. Girls are often wrong; and in this case the nickname is not at all fitting, for Pete is a 6' 2" package of Swedish manhood. One of Pete's favorite subjects is educational administration. He has often been overheard discussing the educational system of the Naval Academy. When Pete wasn't rolling the boys in the aisles with his wit he was usually found playing basketball, fencing, arguing, thinking about his girl back home, or playing his fiddle. It is safe to say that Petsie will be remembered.


The Class of 1943 was graduated in June 1942 due to World War II. The entirety of 2nd class (junior) year was removed from the curriculum.

1943 Petersen LB.jpg

RICHARD HERMAL PETERSEN

Ogden, Utah

"Petsie" is his nickname. It is rumored that he was branded with this name by the girls of his home town. Girls are often wrong; and in this case the nickname is not at all fitting, for Pete is a 6' 2" package of Swedish manhood. One of Pete's favorite subjects is educational administration. He has often been overheard discussing the educational system of the Naval Academy. When Pete wasn't rolling the boys in the aisles with his wit he was usually found playing basketball, fencing, arguing, thinking about his girl back home, or playing his fiddle. It is safe to say that Petsie will be remembered.


The Class of 1943 was graduated in June 1942 due to World War II. The entirety of 2nd class (junior) year was removed from the curriculum.

Loss

From The Salt Lake Tribune on January 14, 1946:

Lt (j.g.) Richard H. Petersen, 25, son of Chief of Police and Mrs. O. H. Petersen, 2553 Harrison Blvd., has been declared killed in action March 27, 1944, while serving aboard the submarine USS Tullibee, by the navy department. He previously had been reported missing. Third in command aboard the submarine, Lt. Petersen was first reported missing May 15, 1944. Since termination of the war, the only survivor of the submarine has been liberated from the Japanese, and, according to his account, the submarine was sunk in open water. Lt. Petersen was born July 8, 1919, in Spanish Fork and later moved to Ogden with his parents. He was graduated from Ogden high school and from Weber junior college, where he had been attending on a music scholarship. He then entered the U. S Naval Academy, Annapolis, and upon graduation entered the submarine service. Surviving are his parents and one sister, Dorothy Peterson, all of Ogden, and four brothers, Kendall O., Woodrow P., Max W., and Drew M Petersen.

From the Class of 1943 anniversary book "25 years later…":

Pete was born on 8 July, 1919 in Spanish Fork, Utah. He was appointed from Utah and entered the Academy 15 June, 1939. After graduation, he was assigned to the submarine SS-14 for duty under instruction followed by duty at the Submarine Base, New London under instruction. In January 1943, he reported to the submarine USS PIKE in the Pacific for duty. Pete reported to the submarine USS TULLIBEE in September and qualified in submarines on 9 October, 1943. Pete was on his third war patrol aboard TULLIBEE near the Palau Islands when she made an attack on a transport in a convoy on the squally night of 26 March, 1944. One torpedo hit the transport but the evidence indicates that the second torpedo fired must have circled back and hit the submarine. Pete was lost with all his shipmates except that there was one survivor to tell the story. Pete wore the Purple Heart, American Defense Service Medal with Fleet Clasp, Asiatic-Pacific Area Campaign Medal with one Bronze Star. He was survived by his Father, Mr. Orsen H. Petersen who at Pete’s death resided at 2553 Harrison Blvd., Ogden, Utah.

USS Tullibee (SS 284) was lost on March 27, 1944, in what may have been a circular run of her own torpedo. There was only a single survivor.



Class of 1943

Richard is one of 84 members of the Class of 1943 on Virtual Memorial Hall.

The "category" links below lead to lists of related Honorees; use them to explore further the service and sacrifice of alumni in Memorial Hall.