Howard Eugene Dirickson, age 78, died on July 5, 2001 from congestive heart failure in Solomons, Maryland.
Chief Dirickson was a native of Littlefield, Texas. He enlisted in the U.S. Navy in 1941, when he was 17 years old. His first duty assignment was Pearl Harbor Naval Hospital. In 1942, he was assigned to the Marine Corps Raider Battalion, a legendary special mission force in the South Pacific. He participated in the landings at Tulagi and other British Solomon Islands. He was a member of the famous Carlson’s Raiders 2nd Raider Battalion which conducted the longest patrol of WWII on Guadalcanal in November and December of 1942.
He served in the Pacific campaigns, surviving a kamikaze bomber attack on the U.S.S. Henrico during the invasion of Okinawa.
During the Korean War, he served aboard the U.S.S. Consolation and the U.S.S. Glendale.
After 27 years of active duty, he retired to Rockville, Maryland and worked for the District of Columbia Government. He received the Scottish Rite 32 degree conferred by the Order of the Freemasons and was a member of the American Legion and the Veterans of Foreign Wars.
He is survived by his daughters and sons-in-law, Mary and Fred Johnson of Fairfax, Virginia and Kathy and Rick Sullivan of Potomac, Maryland; three grandchildren Suzanne Johnson Mercer, Amy Noelle Johnson, and Ryan Howard Sullivan; one great-granddaughter, Megan Nicole Mercer; a sister, Elsie Geer, and numerous, nieces, nephews, and friends; his wife of 53 years, Lillian Frances Dirickson, died in February of this year.
Funeral services will be held on July 18, 2001 at the Fort Myer Chapel, Arlington National Cemetery at 3 p.m. Interment will follow.