Friday, March 28, 2014

RIP, Rear Admiral Jeremiah Denton.

Another giant has passed from among us.

Jeremiah Denton, Vietnam POW and ex-senator, dies at 89

From his Wikipedia page:

Denton is best known for the 1966 televised press conference that he was forced into as an American POW by his North Vietnamese captors. He used the opportunity to communicate successfully and to confirm for the first time to the U.S. Office of Naval Intelligence and Americans that American POWs were being tortured in North Vietnam. He repeatedly blinked his eyes in Morse code during the interview, spelling out the word, "T-O-R-T-U-R-E". He was also questioned about his support for the U.S. war in Vietnam, to which he replied: "I don't know what is happening, but whatever the position of my government is, I support it fully. Whatever the position of my government, I believe in it, yes sir. I am a member of that government, and it is my job to support it, and I will as long as I live." While a prisoner, he was promoted to the rank of Captain. Denton was later awarded the Navy Cross and several other decorations, mostly for heroism while a prisoner of war.
Denton was put in the "Hanoi Hilton" and the "Zoo" prison and prison camp and "Little Vegas" and "Alcatraz" prisons. In "Alcatraz", he became part of a group of American POWs known as the "Alcatraz Gang". The group consisted of James Mulligan, George Thomas Coker, George McKnight, James Stockdale, Harry Jenkins, Sam Johnson, Howard Rutledge, Robert Shumaker, Ronald Storz, and Nels Tanner. They were put in "Alcatraz" and solitary confinement to separate them from other POWs because their strong resistance led other POWs in resisting their captors. "Alcatraz" was a special facility in a courtyard behind the North Vietnamese Ministry of National Defense, located about one mile away from Hoa Lo Prison. Each of the American POWs spent day and night in windowless 3-by-9-foot (0.91 m × 2.74 m) cells mostly in irons.

And his book:
When Hell was in Session

Like so many others in that place, he was tortured and maimed just for being an American, but he stood tall and never broke, and when he came back, he continued to stand tall for America. This country has precious few men like this, and this one will be missed, and spoken of with honor.


  1. Indeed. Again another book to read of men that should not be forgotten.

  2. An amazing man indeed. They don't make many like him that's for sure. I'm glad that he and others like him have served our country so well.

  3. Rest In Peace, Warrior!

  4. Anonymous12:47 PM

    R.I.P. Rear Admiral Jeremiah Denton