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Detector Awards and Campaign Medals

AE - Armed Forces Expeditionary Medal

13-OCT 1966 to 19-NOV-1966 Dominican Republic

NE - U.S. Navy Battle "E" Ribbon

01-OCT-1976 to 30-SEP-1977
01-OCT-1980 to 30-SEP-1981
01-OCT-1981 to 30-SEP-1982

In Memorium

Captain David Van Saun (USN RET)

USS Detector MSO 429
August 1977 - August 1979

     Captain David Van Saun, United States Navy Retired, passed away peacefully on November 17, 2012 surrounded by his loving family.

     David was born in Hackensack, NJ on November 17, 1945, raised in Long Beach, CA, and graduated from UCLA. He married the love of his life, Doris, on June 25, 1983 in San Diego, CA.

     David proudly served his country in the United States Navy (USN) from 1968-1998. He served as Commanding Officer for the USS Detector MSO-429 from August 1977 thru August 1979, He was a fondly remembered and respected Captain as acredited by his former crew members.

     David was a highly decorated career USN Surface Warfare officer who served in Vietnam as well as on many other naval ships and also Commanding Officer at the Mayport Naval Station.

     After retirement, Captain Van Saun served as Joint Cross-Service Team Leader for the 2005 Defense Base Closure and Realignment Commission. He also was a member of the Navy League; serving as president of the Mayport Chapter and National Director.

     David enjoyed hiking, was a Republican and a pro-life advocated.

     Family members include his wife of 30 years, Doris Carter Pace Van Saun; sons, Christopher A. Pace (Sarah), Brian S. Pace (Angelique) and Michael Van Saun; daughter, Deborah Van Saun; brother, Walter "Bud" Van Saun (Dores); special niece, Linda Van Smaalen; sister-in-law, Brenda Carter; and 8 grandchildren; 1 grandniece; and 6 grandnephews. Predeceased by his father, Walter Van Saun; mother, Harriett Elizabeth "Betty" Van Saun; and brother, Arthur "Art" Van Saun. His former crew members of the USS Detector MSO-429 stand at attention and render a right hand salute in his honor.

Fair Winds and Following Seas Captain

Captain Dennis I Parsons (USN RET)
Commanding Officer
USS Detector MSO-429
August 1979 - July 1981

     Captain Dennis Parsons, United States Navy Retired, passed away on March 8, 2011 in Charleston, S.C. at the age of 67. A private memorial service with military honors was held at the Stuhr Mount Pleasant Chapel on March 11. Dennis was born Oct. 1, 1943, in Sauk Centre to Freeman and Helen Parsons. Dennis grew up in Sauk Centre and graduated from Sauk Centre High School in 1961. He married Bonnie Durham of Sauk Centre on Aug. 14, 1965. He was a graduate of the University of Minnesota School of Pharmacy, receiving his pharmacy license in 1967. Dennis Parsons retired from the Navy after a 30-year career; retiring as a captain. He worked for the Veterans Administration as a pharmacist until his death. Dennis is survived by his wife of 45 years, Bonnie Parsons of Charleston; mother, Helen Parsons of Albany; mother-in-law, Mava (Durham) Barchenger of Sauk Centre. Dennis was preceded in death by his father, Freeman Parsons. Captain Parsons' crew while aboard the USS DETECTOR MSO-429 stand at attention and render a right hand salute in his honor.

We fondly remember you and we miss your leadership

Rest in Eternal Peace Captain

Photo donated by: Tony Flynn in Memory of his Father HMC Donald T. Flynn

Photo donated by: Tony Flynn in Memory of his Father HMC Donald T. Flynn

Where the Fleet Goes...We've Been...

"One Of The Dirty D's"

First Commanding Officer
LT.Commander J.E. Tingle
Last Commanding Officer
Commander John J. Felloney
Homeport: Pier 2 Newport, R.I.

     “I retired as an 0-6 and had five more commands after Detector, Including USS McClusky FFG 41, Desron 33 and USS Lake Champlain CG 57. I retired in 1999 and am still working for the Navy.

     I have many fond memories of the Detector and in particular the crew!

     All my commands that followed Detector were always judged based on the professionalism and dedication of the Detector crew. It was the baseline for Navy standards during my career!“

John J. Felloney, Captain, USN Retired
Commanding Officer USS DETECTOR MSO-429 1981-1982

One of the very first Ships Plaques

The Second Ships Plaque

Authentic Decom Plaque Given to me at the Decom Ceremonies

Authentic MinDiv 43 Pennant flown Aboard Detector. Passed down to me by IC2 George Cleveland


     USS DETECTOR (MSO-429) was an Ocean going Mine Sweeper of the USS DASH class. She was built by Astoria Marine Constuction Company in Astoria Oregon. Laid down 1 October 1951 Launched on December 5, 1952 and Commissioned USS Detector (AM-429), 26 January 1954; Reclassified (MSO-429), 7 February 1955; Commanded by LT.Commander J.E. Tingle. Sponsored by Mrs. W. Norblad.

Displacement 900 Tons
Length 173'
Beam 35'
Draft 12'
Speed 14 kts

     At the time of her Decommissioning: (ACTIVE COMPLEMENT)5 Officers, 45 Enlisted,(RESERVE COMPLEMENT) 3 Officers, 32 Enlisted; Armament, as built, one single 40mm gun mount, after     refurbish, two .50 cal machine guns, final configuration, bow gun replaced by one twin 20mm gun mount, two .50cal. machine guns remain; As For Propulsion and power, Keith Pantermoller, EMC Retired, served 1974-1975 States: She had (2) GM 8-278A diesels for propulsion - one on eachshaft, two controllable pitch propellers She had (1) GM 8-268 diesel powering a 250kw SS (ship service)generator and an GM 871 diesel powering a 100kw SS generator. She also had an 8-278 Magnetic and an 8-268 acoustic generator in the forward engine room. The (4) Dirty D's were the only ones with (1) engine on each shaft. All the rest had (2) on each shaft. This Propulsion configuration was also confirmed by Ex ENC Robin Roberts 1980-1983 Decom Crew.

     Detector sailed from San Diego on 18 October 1954 to join Mine Force Atlantic Fleet. Following a transit of the Panama Canal, she reported for duty as a unit under the U.S. Atlantic Fleet Mine Force, homeported in Charleston, South Carolina. Along with her operations in the local area and off Florida on mine exercises, she served tours of duty with the 6th Fleet in the Mediterranean in 1956-1959. She cruised to Northern Europe between 12 May and 30 September 1958 and through 1962 took part in
training and amphibious exercises.

     In 1959 Detector's Homeport was changed to Naval Amphibius Base, Little Creek, Virginia where she remained until 1969. From 1954 - 1969 the ship made numerous deployments to the Mediterranean, North Atlantic and Caribbean. In the Summer of 1964, While attached to MinDiv 43, Detector, Along with Dash, Direct and Dominant were assigned to the Carribean to Patrol the Windward Passage in search of Russian ships. Their mission was to locate and determine a particular ships mission.

     In 1970 following a one year homeport return to Charleston, S.C., Detector was assigned to the Naval Ships Research and Development Laboratory, Panama City, Florida during the months of February thru March. Then it was a return trip to Charleston SC which remained her Homeport until 1971 when she was assigned duties as a Naval Reserve training ship and moved to Portsmouth New Hampshire.

     Jack MacBrayne, Supply Officer From 1969 - 1971 offers the following account:
     “Detector was assigned to Mine Warfare Research in Panama City, but that was only for about two months around Feb & Mar 1970 And then we returned to Charleston. In June we left Charleston on a deployment to northern Europe and the Med. (All four of the Dirty D's went.) Ports of call that I remember: Campelltown, Scotland; near Glascow, Scotland; Edinburgh, Scotland (joint exercise with Royal Navy in Firth of Forth); Plymouth, England; Bremerhaven, Germany; Ostend, Belgium; Holland; LaRochelle, France; Rota, Spain; Naples, Italy; Palma, Mallorca; Augusta, Sicily (several times); Piraeus (Athens), Greece (joint exercise with Greeks - may have been NATO). We returned home to Charleston in December.“

     On July 1, 1975, Detector switched type commanders and became part of the Surface Force, U.S. Atlantic Fleet.

     Detector Moved to Newport, Rhode Island on August 12, 1977, which remained her homeport until her decommissioning in 1982. While transiting in the Atlantic on 09/27/78 The Detector suffered a fire in the main engine room ten miles south of New London, Connecticut, and was towed to Newport, Rhode Island. This fire has been authenticated by Crewmember Jerauld J. Dunn IC2 USS Detector as well as Tom Salley and Jim Bosecker, of the USS Newman K. Perry DD 883, which rendered assistance to Detector on that day.


     Upon completion of an extensive overhaul in 1980-81, Detector resumed fully operational status as a member of the U.S. Atlantic Fleet. Her underway operational committments during that time required extensive periods away from her Homeport and significant demands on both the ship as well as her regular Navy Crew as well as Reserve crews. Commencing in May 1980, Detector was a participant in Operation Solid Shield 1980; an annual Major amphibious exercise for the U.S. Atlantic Fleet. July saw the start of an intensive refresher training period with Fleet Training Group in Little Creek Virginia, Followed by a three month Operational Committment to the Naval Oceanographic Office for the conduct of an extensive environmental Survey.

     Upon completion of this assignment, Detector commenced preparations for examination by Mine Warfare Inspection Group, Charleston South Carolina. The Webmaster was Involved in this Inspection. The Highly Successful completion of this inspection brought with it Detector's final certification in Mine Warfare Readiness and set the stage for yet another successful involvement in the mine warfare phases of Operation Solid Shield '81. Again, during Excercise Solid shield '81, She was plagued with yet another Small engineroom fire which was quickly extinguished. She made her way to the nearest port under her own power.

     Detector had won many awards in her career which included the Coveted battle “E“ for fiscal years 1965 and 1977. She has won the communications “C“ ,The Combat information center “E“ and 3 consecutive Supply “E“s.

     In 1979, she was awarded the Captain Edward F. Ney Memorial award in the Small Mess Afloat category and was also runner up for the 1965 Atlantic Fleet Admiral Arleigh Burke Award given to the ship showing the greatest improvement in battle efficiency the previous year. More recently, in early 1982 as a testement to her pride, Detector won the Battle Efficiency, CIC green E, Communications green C, Engineering E, Damage control DC and Minesweeping M. Making Her Overall Best Minesweeper in Mine Squadron 12. A tremendous accomplishment for a NRF MSO.

     In the October 1982 Issue of Surface Warfare Magazine, Photos of Myself, The commanding officer and other shipmates were featured (also shown on the photo page) with the following Quote from Commanding Officer John Jack Fellony. “The efforts of every man who served on board Detector during the competitive cycle were superb. The Battle Efficiency Award marks Detector as one of the top minesweepers in the mine force today. This is a tremendous achievement for a Naval Reserve Force Minesweeper and clearly illustrates he importance of the combined Crew's teamwork and devotion to duty. Every Crew Member can take Pride in this exceptional accomplishment CDR J.J. Fellony Commanding Officer USS DETECTOR MSO-429

     From 1971 until her decommission in 1982, Detector served as a Naval Reserve Training ship during independent and combined WESTLANT operations, while continuing the training of it's small crew and meeting operational commitments when the reserve contingent was not aboard. These operations demanded regular Navy crewmembers to work port/starboard watches for the entire length of a cruise making the 1982 awards gained have a very special meaning for the Crew. Most of these same crew members sailed the Detector on her final voyage as well as were part of the final decomissioning crew who took this proud NAVAL VESSEL through to her final days in a salvage yard in Charleston S.C. her original homeport. Detector was Guest ship of honor at the Bristol Rhode Island Annual 4th of July Celebration in 1982. The crew also marched in the Parade. Detector participated in Operation Solid Shield 1982. The first time 4 Ocean Going Sweeps traveled without support in many years to GITMO to show Naval presence in it's Waters. Also in the Early months of 1982, Detector participated off of the coast of Florida with other sweeps and destroyers in Operation Ocean Venture '82.

From the Deck Logs of the USS Harold J. Ellison DD 864

     24-APR Underway from Charleston, S.C. with Commander, Mine Squadron Twelve embarked. USS IMPERVIOUS, USS DETECTOR AND USS FEARLESS transit with USS HAROLD J. ELLISON to anchorage thirty miles east of Mayport, Fl. Z-13-CC drill conducted while enroute.

     25-APR Anchored off Mayport, Fl.; commenced Ocean Venture '82 30-APR Underway for Mayport, Fl.; Arrived Mayport, Fl. 01-MAY Underway from Mayport, Fl.; returned to anchorage. Ocean Venture '82 continued. 05-MAY Underway, observed planned mine detonation to conclude Ocean Venture 1982.

06-MAY Arrived Mayport, Fl.

     During her final cruise in early 1982, Detector made port calls in Gitmo, San Juan and Port Antonio Jamaica.

     From the Beginning, USS DETECTOR was a part of the U.S. Navy Atlantic Fleet. The Atlantic Mineforce during the time of her decommissioning was made up of one Squadron (Mine Squadron 12), and four Divisions: 121, 123, 125 and 126. Detector was part of Division 125. The fact that Detector was a NRF Sweep meaning her Nucleous Regular Navy Crew Complement, unlike the rest of the commands in the Navy at the time, had to be efficient in several job areas throughout the ship. Each man had to be able to handle his specific job classification as well as a few others sometimes even in other departments. The cross training helped a great deal in the small regular crew handling the same workload as a full regular complement on other sweeps. Decommissioned 1 October 1982; Struck from the Naval Register 12-01-83; Final Disposition, sold for scrapping, 26 January 1984 to Wayne Hobbs, Huntington CA, for $22,229. The decommissioning ceremonies for Detector were very special for her crew. The Detector had become our safety and solitude and a large part of all of us. It was even harder to see the family we had become break apart and go seperate ways. After the Ceremonies on 1 OCT 82, I was re-assigned to Commander MineDiv 125 for temporary duty to continue on with teardown as a crew representitive in the yards of Charleston. It was difficult for us to witness the slow transformation to oblivion during teardown. Many crew members found it hard to watch as the items we were responsible for keeping squared away for so long, carelessly torn from her hull. A truly SAD time in our memories.

     The Uss Detector will always hold a very special place in my heart and soul. I Dedicate this website to Her and All of Her "Family" the Crews that were a part of Her Proud Service to Her Country. I will always be PROUD TO SAY "I am a member of the Brotherhood of "IRON MEN Who Sailed WOODEN SHIPS"

Joseph Marturano 3rd
Decommissioning crewmember
President Navy MSO Association (NMSOA)


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     The USS DETECTOR MSO 429 has long ago been scrapped. This website is my dedicated effort to remember her history, her crew members and her missions for future generations to see. I need each and every one of you whom served aboard her, to help me to gather as much of her memories, photos and memorabilia as possible. If you have some photos or a specific memory or two, PLEASE, send them to me to incorporate into this website. WE are the ONLY ones that can preserve her history and memories! Once we are gone, all our knowledge and experiences are gone with us, Unless we help to store it here....THANK YOU SHIPMATES!!!! Enjoy the pages I have put together...JM3 2012

This Website is Dedicated to the Lasting Memory of the USS Detector MSO-429 and Her Crews who Proudly served Our Country for over 27 Years~!......."Where the Fleet Goes....We've Been".....Iron Men......Wooden Ships........Thanks for Visiting My Website.....Pass the Word......Please take a Moment to Sign My Guestbook~!.......The Entire Crew Honors all Veterans who Proudly Served Our Country...All gave Some....Some Gave All....God Bless our Vets!

September 11th 2001 Never Forgotten...

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The Officers and Crew of the USS DETECTOR MSO-429 are Honored to Acknowledge CREW DETECTOR, who served aboard the now Decommissioned USS KINGFISHER MHC-56 Having taken the name of our Beloved MSO USS DETECTOR as their Crew Name in the Gulf War.


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