Ford file photo [2588]

Gerald Ford

Given NameGerald
Born14 Jul 1913
Died26 Dec 2006
CountryUnited States


ww2dbaseFormer US President, Vice-President, and Congressman, Gerald Ford served in the Navy from 1942-46. A standout football player at the University of Michigan (and MVP of the 1934 squad), Ford served on the USS Monterey as "the ship's athletic officer and one of the ship's gunnery officers."

ww2dbaseWhile on board the Monterey, Ford saw "action in the Pacific Theater... in the Battle of Makin. The ship also [took] part in attacks against Kwajalein and Eniwetok, New Guinea, Saipan, Guam, and Taiwan. He also survive[d] a typhoon in the Pacific that batter[ed] the Monterey on December 18, 1944."

ww2dbaseBy 1945, Ford was "promoted to Lieutenant Commander and assigned to Glenview, Illinois, to train new naval officers for sea duty," and by February 1946, he was honorably discharged from the Navy. According to the Ford Presidential Web site, he was "awarded the Asiatic-Pacific Campaign medal with one silver star and four bronze stars, the Philippine Liberation Ribbon with two bronze stars, the American Campaign Medal, and the World War II Victory Medal."

ww2dbaseAfter his discharge from the service, Ford began his steady rise as a lawyer in Michigan and public servant, serving thirteen terms in the House of Representatives. Ford is perhaps best remembered as the successor to President Richard Nixon in 1974. "Our long, national nightmare is over," he said at his swearing in ceremony, hoping to move the nation beyond the Watergate scandal, Nixon's resignation, and restore the trust of its citizens.

ww2dbaseSource: The Gerald R. Ford Presidential Library and Museum.

Last Major Revision: Dec 2006

Gerald Ford Interactive Map


Gerald Ford on the football field at the University of Michigan, 1933Ford aboard Monterey, seated second from the right in the front row, 24 Oct 1943Navigation officer Gerald R. Ford taking a sextant reading aboard USS Monterey, 1944Men of USS Monterey playing basketball in the carrier
See all 9 photographs of Gerald Ford

Gerald Ford Timeline

14 Jul 1913 Gerald Ford was born.
13 Apr 1942 Gerald Ford, the future 38th President of the United States, was commissioned as an ensign in the US Navy.
26 Dec 2006 Gerald Ford passed away.

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Visitor Submitted Comments

1. Anonymous says:
31 Oct 2008 07:00:20 AM

2. Edward ONeal says:
17 Feb 2011 05:08:53 PM

Recently I read a story how Mr. Ford saved his ship by leading a fire party to extinguish a massive fire on the hangar deck of the USS Monterrey. Apparently he never received a medal for this highly courageous act. He should receive, posthumously, the Navy and Marine Corps Medal.

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More on Gerald Ford
Event(s) Participated:
» Typhoon Cobra

Ship(s) Served:
» Monterey

Gerald Ford Photo Gallery
Gerald Ford on the football field at the University of Michigan, 1933
See all 9 photographs of Gerald Ford

Famous WW2 Quote
"All that silly talk about the advance of science and such leaves me cold. Give me peace and a retarded science."

Thomas Dodd, late 1945

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