1901 - Born on October 19th in Boulder, Colorado. 1919 - Appointed to the U.S. Naval Academy. 1923 - 7 June: Graduating 70th in his class, he received his commission as Ensign, USN. That afternoon he married Roberta Gorsuch. 1928 - He was an officer in the battleship Arizona. 1929-1931 - Resuming his formal education in June, Lieutenant Burke received a Master's Degree from the University of Michigan two years later, then served in the heavy cruiser Chester. 1937 - He joined the destroyer Craven. 1939 - He took command of USS Mugford. 1940-1942 - Burke was assigned to the Naval Gun Factory as an ordnance inspector. 1944 - Burke became Chief of Staff to Vice Admiral Marc A. Mitscher, who led the Pacific Fleet's fast carrier task forces. 1946-1947 - With the temporary rank of Commodore, he served with Mitscher until nearly the end of the Pacific War, had a brief tour with the Bureau of Ordnance, and was again Mitscher's Chief of Staff. - Captain Burke was assigned to the Navy's General Board, commanded the light cruiser Huntington, and was active in the debate over Armed Forces' roles and missions while serving with the office of the Chief of Naval Operations (CNO). 1951 - He commanded a cruiser division and participated in the Korean War's vexing armistice negotiations, then returned to Washington to direct the CNO's Strategic Plans Division. 1954-1955 - Burke led a Sixth Fleet cruiser division and became Commander of the Atlantic Fleet's Destroyer Force. - Quickly promoted to the rank of Admiral, Burke took over as Chief of Naval Operations in mid-August. 1961 - He had an active business and civic life, as well as remaining closely involved with the Navy. 1977 - He was awarded the Medal of Freedom. 1991 - The U.S. Navy named an entire class of modern destroyers after him and the USS Arleigh Burke (DDG 51) was commissioned. 1996 - Died on January 1st in the Northern Virginia suburbs.
Page last updated: 10:04am, 15