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Adapted from "Captain Alexander Craig Veasey, U. S. Navy" [biography, dated 6 November 1957] in Biographies, 20th century collection, Navy Department Library.

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  • World War II 1939-1945
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Alexander Craig Veasey

1 August 1908 – 18 October 1989

Alexander Craig Veasey was born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, on 1 August 1908. He attended William Penn Charter School in Philadelphia and had enlisted service in the Army Air Corps at Langley Field, Virginia, from August 1925 to May 1927. In June of that year he entered the U S Naval Academy where he stood second in the Class of 1931, won the Class of 1871 sword for excellence in practical and theoretical gunnery and a Letter of Commendation from the Superintendent; was a four-striper in command of the Second Battalion; and participated in Soccer. Graduated with distinction, he was commissioned Ensign on 4 June 1931, and subsequently advanced to the rank of Captain, to date from 1 July 1949.

After graduation from the Naval Academy in June 1931, he was assigned to USS Richmond, in which he served until May 1933, first as junior engineer, later as Assistant Navigator. Detached from that cruiser, he reported to the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge, Massachusetts, where for three years he was under instruction in Naval Construction and Warship Design. He received the Master of Science degree in 1936, but elected to remain in the Line of the Navy rather than transfer to the Construction Corps.

In June 1936 he joined USS Indianapolis, and served as Radio and Electrical Officer of that cruiser until April 1938, when he was transferred to USS Tracy (DM-19), in which he served until October 1939 as First Lieutenant, Gunnery Officer and Engineering Officer. He was next ordered to USS Shubrick, being fitted out for recommissioning at the Destroyer Base, San Diego, California. He served as her Executive Officer from December 1939 until December 1940 on West Gulf Patrol, then participated in her transfer to the British under Lend-Lease agreement at Halifax, Nova Scotia.

In 1941 he served as Assistant Gunnery Officer of USS Tuscaloosa, operating as a unit of the Atlantic Fleet. Detached on 29 December 1941, after the outbreak of World War II, he returned to the United States from Iceland in USS Greer, which was escorting a convoy. From February 1942 until May 1943 he served as Flag Lieutenant and Flag Secretary Commander Naval Forces, Europe, Headquarters in London, England. During the last few months of that period he also served as Commanding Officer of Base No.11, Roseneath, Scotland.

Upon his return to the United States from Europe, he reported in May 1943 to the Bath Iron Works, Bath, Maine, to assist in fitting out USS Ingersoll (DD-652), and assumed command of that destroyer at her commissioning, 31 August 1943. Under his command the Ingersoll joined the Fast Carrier Task Forces for combat operations in the Pacific and Asiatic Areas and participated in the Marshall Islands Campaign in February 1944, the first raids on Truk, Saipan, Hollandia and Palau, the occupation of Guam, Saipan and Palau, the Battle for Leyte Gulf and Philippine landings October 1944, and operations off the China Coast and Formosa.

“For exceptionally meritorious conduct…during the Palau and Philippine landing operations, from 30 August to 11 November 1944…” he was awarded the Legion of Merit with Combat “V”…he was also awarded the Silver Star Medal for “conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity…during the period from 13 to 17 October 1944 (when he) directed his ship through missions of rescue, of transferal of personnel under adverse conditions of wind and sea, and when under air attack…”

He received a Letter of Commendation, with Ribbon, from the Commander in Chief, US Pacific Fleet, for outstanding service in successfully repulsing two enemy air attacks during the period 6 to 20 June 1944, and a Bronze Star in lieu of the Second Commendation Ribbon, for distinguished service in command of the USS Ingersoll during the Tinian, Saipan and Guam operation on 22 February 1944.

In April 1945 he reported to the Bureau of Ships, Navy Department, Washington, D C, and was assigned to the Cruiser Type Desk, for electrical and electronic work. In January-June 1948 he assisted in fitting out USS Worcester (CL-144), and served as her Executive Officer from her commissioning until July 1949, during which period she operated as a unit of the Atlantic Fleet.  In August of that year he reported to the Bureau of Naval Personnel, Navy Department, for duty in the Training Division (Standards and Curriculum Branch).

From June 1950 to October 1952 he was assigned to the Strategic Plans Division of the Joint Staff, Joint Chiefs of Staff, and for a year thereafter command USS Diamond Head (AE-19), participating in experimental ammunition stowage and transfer at sea. In October 1953 he returned to the Navy Department for a tour of duty in the Office of the Chief of Naval Operations (Fleet Development and Maintenance Division). In February 1956 he was ordered to sea as Commander Transport Division 52, and in July of the same year was transferred to command of Amphibious Squadron 5. On 5 August 1957, he was ordered to Tokyo, Japan, for duty as Chief of the Naval Section, Military Assistance Advisory Group, Japan. He died on 18 October 1989.

In addition to the Legion of Merit, Silver Star Medal, and Commendation Ribbon with bronze star, Captain Veasey had the American Defense Service Medal with bronze “A”; the American Campaign Medal; the Asiatic-Pacific Campaign Medal with one silver and two bronze stars (seven engagements); the World War II Victory Medal; National Defense Service Medal and the Philippine Liberation Ribbon with two stars.

Published: Mon Nov 23 13:27:04 EST 2020