Skip to comments.Navy officer, Red Raider remembered as ‘great guy’ (CO of USS Harry S. Truman dies suddenly)
Posted on 11/11/2011 7:59:33 AM PST by ketelone
Capt. Tushar R. Tembe, commander of the USS Harry S. Truman died Tuesday in Norfolk, Va.
During the Texas Tech football game against Oklahoma State University on Saturday, there will be a moment where all the screaming and cheering will pause.
No fans in the stadium will make a sound. All conversations and instruments will remain quiet as a moment of silence will be conducted for a Tech alumnus who died Tuesday while serving as commanding officer of the nuclear-powered aircraft carrier Harry S. Truman at Norfolk Naval Shipyard in Norfolk, Va.
The Tech flag currently flies at half-staff above Memorial Circle in honor of Capt. Tushar R. Tembe, a Red Raider who died while serving his country.
Capt. Tembe was someone whose service we are extremely proud of, said Jerry E. Turner, chairman of the Tech Board of Regents. He is a representative of all the graduates who have had distinguished careers in service. As we celebrate his service, we are celebrating the service of other Tech alumni who have served in various sanctions of the military.
In a statement from the U.S. Navy, Tembe, a Tech petroleum engineering graduate, was taken to Bons Secours Maryview Medical Center and was later pronounced dead. The cause of his death is currently unknown.
Tembe was born in India and moved with his family to New York City as a child. He was 49 years old at the time of his death and is survived by his wife, Marianne, whom he married in 1992, and their two sons, Ian, 16, and Connor, 14.
We offer our sincere condolences to Capt. Tembes wife and children, his family and the Truman crew, said Rear Adm. Ted Branch, commander, Naval Air Force, U.S. Atlantic Fleet, in a news release the Navy issued Wednesday. They are in our thoughts and our prayers as we deal with this tragic loss. Capt. Tembe served the Navy and our nation honorably and with great distinction. We honor his outstanding contributions to our nation.
John Fleming, who knew Tembe for more than 20 years, first met him in 1989 when Fleming was the commanding officer of Striker Fighter Squadron (VFA-132). He and Tembe were privateers who deployed on the USS Forrestall aircraft carrier.
We called him Haaji, Fleming said. When we deployed on the Forrestall, we would take 80-100 aircrafts out on an aircraft carrier and go to the Mediterranean and participate in an event operation called Provide Comfort that actually helped protect people against Saddam Hussein.
Fleming said Tembe was a great junior officer at the time.
He was very well-respected in the squadron and successful in becoming qualified as a fighter pilot for the Navy, he said.
After he was in Flemings squadron, Tembe was selected to attend Empire Test Pilots School, which Fleming said is an honor.
Tembe went to England as an exchange student and was trained by the British military in becoming a test pilot. From there, he went to a tour in Maryland as a naval test pilot. He would perform carrier suitability tests, during which he would go out and make sure naval aircrafts were qualified to land onboard ships.
He was then selected for command and served as a commanding officer of the Strike Fighter Squadron (VFA-87), whose members are nicknamed the Golden Warriors.
Tembe was also selected to command the USS Dwight D. Eisenhower aircraft carrier (CVN-69) and the USS Nashville (LPD-13), the latter of which he took on a humanitarian mission to Africa where the crew went out and gave assistance to several African countries along the coast.
After that, Tembe was selected to command the USS Harry S. Truman (CVN-75), where he served as commanding officer for three months.
He was a great officer, a great leader and a great American, Fleming said. He was well-respected by the many he led.
Tembe was also very involved with his family. He was active in Norfolk Academy sports and local sports programs in Virginia Beach, Va., in which his sons participated in. While his sons played soccer, baseball and basketball, Tembe enjoyed playing golf.
He was a wonderful father, and an excellent golfer, Fleming said. He was very active in family sports.
Fleming said Tembe was a very honest person and an extraordinary leader.
He was well-liked by his Navy associates and also well-respected in the community, he said. He was also very smart. He went through a good engineering program and, with his test pilot background, he was a very logical thinker.
Fleming said he saw Tembe every year since 1989 and that Tembe smiled all the time.
We were very close personal friends and shipmates, Fleming said. He had a well-rounded personality and was just an overall great guy.
The cause of his death is currently unknown.
They can't even run a competent cover up any more.
Thank you for posting this. We need more uplifting stories of those who have worked hard and served others well.
May God be with him and his family. Ian and Conner sound like fine Irish names.
Texas Tech bump
Um no, dude. It says he moved to the US from India when he was a kid, served in a VFA, worked hard, got educated, served his nation, and was last posted as CO of the USS Truman. By all accounts, he was a good guy. Lets show some respect.
More likely from Johnny Quest...
So what IS his religion, since you know what it is not?
Hajii was his call sign as a fighter pilot. Remember the movie Top Gun ... you had Maverick, Ice Man, etc.
My son serves on the Truman, and quite frankly, your assumptions are vile. He was a well respected leader.
Ashlyn Tubbs has taken journalistic liberty in putting a period after the S in Harry’s name. How helpful!
So what is his religion?
True, even Harry did occasionally, but only because someone told him he should as a matter of style. But his middle name was "S". My middle name is John. I don't put a period after it.
Ummmm, you just did...
*nully ducking and running for cover*
Love that “Glock” humor eh.
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