Obituary for Giulio V. Iafolla
Giulio V. Iafolla
Age 91 Longtime Resident of Voorhees, NJ
Passed away on November 9, 2016. Beloved husband of Margaret (nee Tarquinio) for 71 years. Loving father of Terri Karbach (Hank), Joseph Iafolla (Megan) and the late Dennis Iafolla. Devoted grandfather of Jennifer, Kristopher, Jessica, Nathaniel, Jared, Kathryne, Devon and Tyler. Great Grandfather of MacKenzie. Dear brother of Marie Morgan. He is also survived by many loving nieces, nephews and cousins.
At age 17, Mr. Iafolla joined the U.S. Navy as an apprentice seaman at Pittsburgh, PA on Sep. 28 1942 and went to Boot Training and Storekeeper school at the Naval Training Center, Newport, RI. He received orders to the USS Pastores (AF-16) which transported 4-way beef to units of the U.S. & British Army & Navy bases in the Caribbean. He transferred to and spent a year at the Section Base, Trinidad, B.W.I. supporting escort vessels assigned to duty guarding convoys enroute to Africa and South America. He requested combat duty and received immediate transfer to the Mediterranean Theatre of Operations. He then travelled via LST (Tank Landing Ship) from Little Creek, VA to Oran, Algeria. He traversed the Sahara Desert in a “40 & 8” boxcar from Oran to Biserte and was “baptized” by the German Air Force enroute. After that, he boarded another LST for transfer & Assignment to Naval Advanced Base, Palermo, Sicily.
Due to his linguistic abilities in Italian, he was assigned to the port area supervising the loading and unloading of ships in direct support of the Southern France invasion, U.S. warships bombarding the coast of Italy. Also, due to his linguistic abilities in Italian, he was sent on a classified mission to Naples Italy and eventually to Rome to mingle with the locals to gather intel on German troop movement, returning to Palermo via Naples. He celebrated VJ day in Rome, and was discharged October 16, 1945.
Giulio re-enlisted on December 24, 1945 and was assigned to the USS Ajax (AR-6) which spent six months in the Marshall Islands participating in the Bikini A-bomb tests (Able & Baker) and witnessed the destruction of the U.S., Japanese and German warships from a distance of only 8 miles. In the spring of 1948 he was assigned to recruiting duty in Philadelphia, PA and in the fall of 1949 was transferred to the Pentagon awaiting assignment to NATO. In February 1950, he was assigned to the American embassy in Rome as a member of the Military Assistance Advisory Group in support of rebuilding units of the Italian navy.
He returned to the United States in August 1952, having been promoted to Chief Storekeeper as a result of a Navy-wide exam and an outstanding service record. He was assigned to the Torpedo Test Range, Piney Point, Maryland. After being decommissioned, re-assigned to the Cheltenham, MD Naval Radio Receiver site near Washington, DC.
In September 1955, he was assigned to the USS Aucilla (AO-56), a gas tanker home ported in Barcelona Spain. They operated with the sixth fleet providing petroleum products to other ships and stations throughout the Mediterranean. In September 1957, he was reassigned to the USS Cadmus (AR-14) as the Supply Chief and returned to the sixth fleet in support of fleet operations.
In September 1958, he was assigned to the U.S. naval air station, Roosevelt Roads, Puerto Rico as an administrative assistant to the Supply Officer and Supply Chief. He was commissioned as an Ensign in the Supply Core on January 1, 1960 as a result of a competitive three day Navy-wide exam achieving a lineal number of six out of 4000 exam participants.
He unintentionally ended up in the Office Candidate School in Newport, R. I, in February 1960 and then underwent a six month intensive course of instruction at the Navy Supply Corps School, in Athens, Georgia. He received orders to the USS Observation Island (EAG-154) at Port Canaveral Florida. The “OI” was the only Navy ship fitted with Fleet Ballistic Missile type firing tubes to test different models of the Polaris missile. Due to worldwide concern, this project was assigned number one priority by the defense department.
He served as a Stores and Weapons Stores Officer traversing the Panama Canal east and west while conducting missile firing operations in the Central Pacific area and was promoted to Lieutenant (Junior Grade) then transferred to the Naval Oceanographic Office in Philadelphia, PA as officer in charge of many various classified documents. In October 1964, promoted to Lieutenant (Senior Grade),he transferred to the U.S. Naval Support Activity, Taipei, Taiwan, ROC as Contracting and Inventory Control Officer. He contracted for and bought fresh fruit and vegetables for 60,000 men of the seventh fleet operating off Vietnam and supported Barry Island clandestine operations in the Vietnam War. He supported the Taiwan Defense Command, Military Assistance Advisory Group ROC and administered school contracts for 3000 military dependent students in public and parochial schools.
He returned to the United States in June 1967 and was assigned as Assistant Contracting and Material Officer at the New York Shipbuilding Corp., Camden, NJ. completing the closing of that facility, and was re-assigned to the Naval Air Engineering Command, Naval Base, Phila, PA as Material Officer.
He supported marine helicopter operations in Vietnam and Research & Development in aircraft pilot ejection equipment.
He was meritoriously promoted to Lieutenant Commander in 1968, one year ahead of schedule, and retired on Oct. 1, 1970 with 28 years of service. In 1979, due to high security clearance, he joined Star Associates in Camden NJ under contract to the US Navy to refurbish various aspects of the USS Saratoga (CVA-60) at the Philadelphia shipyard and completed this employment as Security Officer. He went back to College and graduated with an Advanced Accounting Degree and an Associate’s Degree in Applied Science making the presidents list and graduating in the top 20 of the class, opened the first Naval Federal Credit Union in Philadelphia, established the medical warehouse for the West Jersey Hospital (Now Virtua), worked for H & R Block and even became a Real Estate Agent for a few years.
Relatives and friends are invited to the viewing 7-9pm on Monday, November 14, 2016 at the BRADLEY FUNERAL HOME, Rt. 73 & Evesham Rd., Marlton, NJ. There will also be a viewing 10-10:45am Tuesday, November 15, 2016 at Holy Eucharist Church, 344 Kresson Rd., Cherry Hill, NJ 08034, followed by a Funeral Mass at 11am. Burial will follow at Brigadier General Doyle Veterans Cemetery in Wrightstown, NJ. The family has requested that in lieu of flowers, donations be made to the Wounded Warrior Project, 301 Grant St., Suite 900, Pittsburgh, PA 15219.