You choose, we deliver
If you are interested in this story, you might be interested in others from The Journal Gazette. Go to www.journalgazette.net/newsletter and pick the subjects you care most about. We'll deliver your customized daily news report at 3 a.m. Fort Wayne time, right to your email.

U.S.

  • ‘SNL’ announcer Don Pardo, 96, dies
    Don Pardo, the “Saturday Night Live” announcer whose career spanned the history of television and who made memorable appearances in skits and music videos that played the booming cadence of his voice for laughs, died Monday at his home in Tucson,
  • Hope, resentment in new charter school landscape
    Nine years after Hurricane Katrina, charter schools are the new reality of public education in New
  • Latest Ferguson protests are smaller, more subdued
    Police and protesters in Ferguson were finally able to share the streets again at night, putting aside for at least a few hours some of the hostility that had filled those hours with tear gas and smoke.
Advertisement

Commander of 1st nuclear submarine dies at 94

Eugene Wilkinson, a retired Navy vice admiral who helped guide the early development of the Navy’s nuclear-powered fleet and who commanded the Nautilus, the first nuclear-powered submarine, when it was launched in the 1950s, died July 11 at his home in Del Mar, Calif. He was 94.

A son, Stephen Wilkinson, confirmed the death but did not provide a cause.

Eugene Wilkinson, who also held the initial command of the Navy’s first nuclear-powered surface ship in the early 1960s, had taught college-level chemistry and mathematics before serving aboard submarines during World War II.

His dual background as a professor and naval officer caught the attention of Adm. Hyman Rickover, who directed the Navy’s postwar program in nuclear propulsion. Historical accounts have noted that Rickover selected Wilkinson at least in part because he did not attend the U.S. Naval Academy and had an independent approach to shipbuilding and sailing.

“Rickover was looking for guys bright enough to think, design and build something that hadn’t been built before,” said retired Vice Adm. Kenneth Carr, who served aboard the Nautilus with Wilkinson. “He was looking for a guy who had the practical experience in submarining and the dreaming experience of being a scientist.”

Advertisement