Robert H. Weeks
Rear Admiral, United States Navy
Robert H. Weeks, 93, a retired Navy Rear Admiral who served on cryptology assignments during World War II and retired in 1971 as Vice Director of the Defense Communications Agency, died of pneumonia June 11, 2003, at the Arleigh Burke Pavilion in McLean.
He settled in Arlington in the 1950s and was living there when he moved to the McLean Navy retirement facility two years ago.
Admiral Weeks, a Massachusetts native, was a 1932 graduate of the U.S. Naval Academy at Annapolis. He later graduated from the Naval War College.
His early assignments included tours aboard cruisers and submarines. When the country entered World War II, he was serving on the cryptologic branch of the Navy operations staff in Washington.
During the war, he held Navy communications security posts in Washington. He also traveled to Britain, where he exchanged American information on Japanese codes for British information on German codes. He traveled with Franklin D. Roosevelt to Canada for the president's historic meeting with British Prime Minister Winston S. Churchill.
After the war, Admiral Weeks held destroyer and oiler commands. He commanded a destroyer squadron before his 1960 promotion to flag rank. After that, he commanded a cruiser-destroyer flotilla and held communications posts in the United States and Europe. He served as director of naval communications for three years before becoming the Defense Communications Agency's vice director in 1968.
In retirement, he did volunteer work in the Arlington public schools as an English as a Second Language tutor.
His wife, the former Reina Sigrid Alvord, whom he married in 1934, died in 1994.
Survivors included a son, John Alvord Weeks
of Silver Spring; a daughter, Sigrid Weeks Benson of Gulf Breeze, Fla.;
five grandchildren; and three great-grandchildren.
He earned an appointment to the Naval Academy in 1928 and graduated in 1932. In 1934 he married the late Reina Sigrid Alvord of Long meadow, Massachusetts.
After several years of serving on cruisers and submarines he was chosen to join a new special cryptologic branch in the Naval Operation staff in Washington, D.C.
In june 1941, well before Pearl Harbor, he and three other military officers traveled on the battleship HMS King George V to England. There they exchanged among other things, Japanese codes for information on the now famous German Enigma cryptologic machine. During World War II he was assigned to Navy communication security commands in Washington, which included his carrying codes aboard President Roosevelt's yacht on the Potomac.
In 1947 and 1948 he was Skipper of the USS James C. Owens (DD-776) when she supported the UN Palestine/Israel Mediation Force. He was skipper of the oiler USS Sabine (AO-25) 1953/54. As Commodore of Destroyer Squadron 10, 1958/59, aboard the USS Forrest Sherman (DD-931), he commanded an Atlantic Task Force through the Suez Canal to join Pacific forces protecting Formosa from communist China.
After selection for Rear Admiral in 1960 he was Commander of Cruiser/Destroyer Flotilla 10, 1961 and 1962. He was Deputy for Communications and Electronics, European command, based in Paris 1963 to 1965. He served as Director of Naval Communications (DNC) from 1965 to 1968 and finished his career as Vice Director of the Defense Communications Agency (DCA), retiring in 1971.
In retirement he tutored English as a second language to children in the Arlington school system.
He is survived by: daughter, Sigrid Weeks Benson of Gulf Breeze, Florida and son, John Alvord Weeks of Silver Spring, Maryland; Sigrid's two sons, Captain (Sel) Timothy Atkinson, USN and Dr. Tobias Atkinson, DVM; John's two sons, Gregor David Weeks and Andrew Robert Weeks and daughter, Renee Pauline Weeks; and three great-grandchildren, Joshua Leverett Atkinson, Sarah Mashburn Atkinson, and Zachary Weeks Atkinson.
A Memorial reception will be held at the ARLINGTON FUNERAL HOME, from 7 to 9 p.m. Wednesday, July 2, 2003. The funeral ceremony will be attended only by immediate family on July 8, 2003 at the Arlington National Cemetery. In lieu of flowers please make donations to the Navy League of the United States, 2300 Wilson Blvd., Arlington, VA 22201.
WEEKS, ROBERT H
Posted: 15 June 2003 Updated: 26 November 2005 Updated: 6 June 2010