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First Name: Abraham

Last Name: DeSomer

Birthplace: Milwaukee, WI, USA

Gender: Male

Branch: Navy (present)


Home of Record: WI

Date of Birth: 29 December 1884

Date of Death: 31 August 1974

Rank or Rate: Lieutenant Commander

Years Served: 1907-1932, 1940-1942
Abraham DeSomer

•  Occupation of Veracruz (1914)


Abraham DeSomer

Lieutenant Commander, U.S. Navy

Medal of Honor Recipient

Occupation of Veracruz

Lieutenant Commander Abraham DeSomer (29 December 1884 - 31 August 1974) was a U.S. Navy officer who received the U.S. military's highest award for valor, the Medal of Honor, for his heroic actions during the Occupation of Veracruz.

Abraham DeSomer was born on 29 December 1884 in Milwaukee, WI. In the early 1900s, he enlisted in the U.S. Navy from that state. Following his initial sea duty on board the gunboat USS Yorktown, DeSomer transferred to the monitor USS Monadnock, which served on the Asiatic Station, and became a Gunner's Mate. From 1907 to 1911, he was assigned to the battleship USS Nebraska. DeSomer was promoted to Chief Petty Officer in 1910. A year later, he reported to the battleship USS Utah. While serving on that ship from 21-22 April 1914, during the intervention at Veracruz, Mexico, his heroism earned him the Medal of Honor.

Medal of Honor

Rank and organization: Lieutenant, U.S. Navy, USS Utah

Place and date: Veracruz, Mexico, 21 and 22 April 1914

Citation: On board the U.S.S. Utah, for extraordinary heroism in the line of his profession during the seizure of Vera Cruz, Mexico, 21 and 22 April 1914.

In February 1915 DeSomer was promoted to the warrant officer rank of Gunner. During the next four years he served on the transport USS Hancock, the armored cruiser USS Montana, and the battleship USS Minnesota. He was temporarily commissioned as an Ensign in August 1917 and attained the rank of Lieutenant in September 1918. In the spring of 1919, DeSomer transferred to Naval Training Center, Great Lakes, IL. He was made a permanent Lieutenant in August 1920 and, a year later, reported to the newly commissioned battleship USS California.

DeSomer began two more years of training duty at Great Lakes in the summer of 1925, then was assigned to the destroyer tender USS Dobbin and the aircraft carrier USS Lexington before transferring in November 1930 to Naval Air Station, Pearl Harbor, HI. Following more than thirty years of continuous service as an enlisted man and an officer, Lieutenant DeSomer retired in January 1932. He returned to active duty in the summer of 1940, after the fall of France prompted a massive expansion of America's defenses. Promoted to Lieutenant Commander on the retired list in February 1942, he remained on active status through the war years.

Death and Burial

Lieutenant Commander Abraham DeSomer died on 31 August 1974. He is buried at the San Francisco National Cemetery in San Francisco, CA.

Honoree ID: 1989   Created by: MHOH




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