Former navy officer from Kerala who served during World War II dies at 97

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Kerala-born retired navy officer Vice Admiral John Thomas Goslin Pereira died in Mumbai on Monday after a brief illness, family sources said. He was 97 years old and one of the last surviving naval officers to have served during the Second World War. He had retired as Indian Navy's former Chief of Materials.

Vice Adm Pereira, who settled at Uran in adjoining Raigad district after his retirement in 1979, died at the naval hospital INSH Asvini in the wee hours, said his former colleague, Vice Adm I C Rao (retd). They worked together on board warship INS Delhi in 1958.

 

 

“JTG" as he was known in Navy circles, was the Chief Staff Officer (Tech) of the Western Naval Command during the 1971 war. He was awarded the Param Vishisht Seva Medal (PVSM) for distinguished service during the war.

"It was the painstaking preparation of the fleet and missile boats under the leadership of JTG which won us laurels during the 1971 war," Vice Adm Rao said.

Born in February 1923 at Kannur in Kerala, JTG was commissioned in the Royal Navy on May 1, 1944. He had joined the Royal Naval College Dartmouth, UK as a cadet in 1939 and graduated from the Royal Naval Engineering College Plymouth in Mechanical and Marine Engineering.

He completed his post-graduation from Royal Naval College Greenwich, UK, in Advanced Engineering and Design Propulsion Systems. He was among the 15 selected from India for an Industrial Management Course conducted by France in Paris.

During his four decade-long career in the Navy, he held with distinction many important appointments both ashore and at sea. He had also directed the R&D work for the Navy.

JTG served in the Mumbai's Naval Dockyard, first as the Industrial Manager and later as the Admiral Superintendent, and was instrumental in creating the shipyards Production Planning and Control Department.

He is survived by son Michael Pereira (71) and daughter Jennifer (67), Vice Adm Rao said.

(With PTI input)