Captain Felix S. Vecchione, a native of Neptune, New Jersey, received his commission from the New York State Maritime Academy. His first assignment, in 1950, was aboard the attack transport USS Telfair, where he served as a boat group commander and first Lieutenant. In 1953, Captain Vecchoine left the Telfair and went to Little Creek, Virginia, as an instructor at the Navy’s Amphibious Training Command, Atlantic Fleet; and then, in 1955, he attended General Line School in Monterey, California.
In 1956, the Captain became executive officer and navigator in the ocean minesweeper USS Notable, home ported in Charleston, South Carolina. This tour was followed by his first command at sea as commanding officer of the USS Vital, also an ocean minesweeper.
After leaving the Vital in 1958, Captain Vecchione went to Washington, DC, where he was assigned to the Navy’s Hydrographic Office. This tour was followed by an assignment as a student at the Naval War College in Newport, Rhode Island, in 1961.
In 1962, after a brief tour with the staff of Destroyer Squadron Six in Charleston and the Caribbean, Captain Vecchoine became the executive officer and then commanding officer of the destroyer USS Eugene A. Greene.
Following his tour in the Greene, the Captain transferred to Long Beach, California, and the pre-commissioning crew of the Guided missile frigate USS Reeves. As the first executive officer of the Reeves, Captain Vecchoine served with the US Seventh Fleet in the waters of Vietnam.
This assignment was followed by a brief tour with the staff of Commander Cruiser Destroyer Force, US Atlantic Fleet; and then, in 1966, he became the commanding officer of the destroyer escort USS Garcia.
In 1968, Captain Vecchoine became the Commander of Mine Squadron Four, a unit of the Atlantic Fleet Mine Force, in Charleston. This was followed by another Washington assignment, this time in the offices of the Chief of Naval Operations.
Captain Vecchoine returned to Charleston in June 1972, and assumed command of the Mobile Mine Countermeasures Command, a unit of the Mine Warfare Force, US Navy.