If you received training at Corry Station in Pensacola FL. between 1980 and 2012, it is likely the fleet systems you were trained to operate or maintain, such as  MOD 40, TACINTEL, BGPHIS, OUTBOARD, CDF, COBLU, SSEE-Inc E and the Morse code training known as “RALPH” just to name a few, was actually maintained by Mr. Richard “Dick” Sutton. 

For more than 30 years, Dick Sutton ensured the cryptologic systems that our navy required to train on were reliable and available to cryptologic technicians.  The number of Sailors that benefited from his maintenance and troubleshooting skills are unknown but the number of Sailors is in the thousands!

In addition to his maintenance skills, Mr. Sutton is well known for his artistic abilities.  Many active duty and civilians stationed at Corry Station as staff received the famous Dick Sutton’s original drawing, each unique and tailored to as a form of application to their service.  Again, it is hard to calculate the number of drawings over the years.

A man with many talents and passions, Mr. Sutton instructed Japanese martial arts “Kiai” (open hand) at the New Orleans Lee Circle YMCA while stationed in New Orleans.  He was also a competitive fencer, Instructor at University of West Florida, long distance runner and fishing fanatic.  On weekends, Mr. Sutton spent much of his time reenacting Civil War battles throughout the south including several trips to Gettysburg. Leaving a lasting mark on Corry Station, Mr. Sutton is responsible for naming the Corry Station Enlisted Barracks, “Sailor’s Roost” and designing the sign.

After Mr. Sutton retired from Federal service in 2012, he continued to serve the people as a Red Cross Disaster Action Team Member volunteer.  As of this post, he has responded to over 640 disasters in the Escambia county and North Florida region and deployed for sheltering and Damage Assessment in Florida, Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, Missouri. Tennessee, Mississippi, Arkansas, Texas, West Virginia and Wisconsin with some areas multiple times.

Recently at 84 years young, Mr. Sutton decided to learn to play the drums.

Mr. Richard “Dick” Sutton biography:

Mr. Richard “Dick” Sutton

Born in 1938 to Wes and Gladys Sutton in Pennsylvania, raised in Buffalo, New York in his early years and Detroit, Michigan in his teen years, Mr. Sutton graduated from Farmington High School in 1956.  Shortly after graduating High School his uncle, Chuck, drove him to the recruiter’s office to enlist in the Navy.  Initially Mr. Sutton thought he was enlisting in the U.S. Marine Corps, but as fate would have it he enlisted in the Navy and was shipped off to Great Lakes for boot camp followed by his first technical training school as an Interior communications electrician (IC) rating.

Following this training, Mr. Sutton made several deployments to the Arctic on the Icebreaker USS Edisto (AGB-2), including Operation Deep Freeze IV.  The purpose of these deployments was to provide continued U.S. presence in Antarctica and to resupply U.S. Arctic bases on the DEW Line Defense during the Cold War. 

In 1960, Mr. Suttons separated from the Navy.  However, because of the Cuban missile crisis he was recalled and ordered to the USS Franklin D. Roosevelt (CV 42), homeported in Mayport, Florida. In response to the crisis, the USS Franklin D. Roosevelt deployed to the Eastern Mediterranean sea, as close as possible to the Soviet Union with every plane at the ready. During this time, some Navy ships had nuclear weapons and FDR was definitely one of them. 

In 1963, Mr. Sutton was sent to Great Lakes for IC “B” school.  Following this training he was ordered to USS Tortuga (LSD 26), homeported in San Diego where he made a WestPac deployment off the Coast of Vietnam with first Marine landing in the war. This would not be his only time in this area of operations. Mr. Sutton was rated as an IC2 during this time. 

During his tour on the Tortuga, Mr. Sutton was involved with the beginnings of “Operation Market Time” with River Patrol Boats in the Mekong Delta until 1968.  Following his time in Vietnam, Mr. Sutton separated from the Navy a second time and returned to Detroit where he worked as a “tunnel mucker”, digging subterranean tunnels under the city of Detroit for water and sewage pipes.  This was extremely dangerous as some of the men Mr. Sutton worked with were killed.  

In 1968, while working in Detroit, Mr. Sutton entered the Training and Administration of the Reserve (TAR) program and on the 89th day, the Navy offered him an opportunity to enlist as a USNR-R (TAR) and rate change offered to the Training Device Man (TD) rating.  Shortly after enlisting, he passed the Petty Officer-One Advancement-in-Rate exam and was rated a TD1. 

In 1969, Mr. Sutton was ordered to Naval Air Station (NAS) New Orleans, as a flight simulator technician.  While in New Orleans, he was sent to Anti-Submarine Warfare (ASW) Tactical School, NATTC NAS Willow Grove, PA. to specialize ASW simulator training (2F71) in support of the P2 (Neptune) ASW aircraft. 

In 1975, following his tour in New Orleans, Mr. Sutton was ordered to TD “B” school in Millington Tennessee for one year of training.  In 1976, following this training he was sent to NAS Whiting Field located in northern Pensacola to serve as the Leading Petty Officer and to run flight simulators in support of the T-28 aircraft and helicopters. During this time the enlisted Sailors would train officer pilot students the mechanics of flight via these simulators.

Mr. Sutton’s pictured in the center last day on the aviation community.

In 1980, following his Whiting Field tour, Mr. Sutton was ordered to NTTC Corry Station as the primary technician for the MCT-4 (RALPH) Morse code trainer.  It was at Corry Station Mr. Sutton advanced the Chief Petty Officer (TDC) and became the Matshop Chief of Matshop building 513. Here he reenlisted for the last time.  On April 30, 1985, after 26 years of faithful service, Mr. Sutton retired from the Navy.

Mr. Richard Sutton is authorized to wear the following medal and ribbons:

Combat Action Medal
Meritorious Unit Commendation
Good Conduct Medal (5)
National Defense Service Medal
Antarctica Service Medal
Armed Forces Expeditionary Medal
Vietnam Service Medal (4 Bronze Stars)
Vietnam Gallantry Cross (5 bronze Stars)
Republic of Vietnam Campaign Medal

After a couple of years as a contractor, repairing teletype MOD-40s, Mr. Sutton was hired as a Government Civilian and for the next 27 years of service, Mr. Sutton maintained and repaired the following System at Corry Station:

MOD 40
Aviation Electronic Warfare NFO trainer
Tactical Intelligence (TACINTEL)
Battle Group Passive Horizon Extension System (BGPHES)
Combat Direction Finding (CDF)
Cooperative Outboard Logistics Update (COBLU)
Direct Support (DiRSUP)
Joint Advanced Tactical Cryptologic Support (JATACS)
Joint Maritime Command Information System (JMCIS)
Global Command and Control System-Maritime (GCCS-M)
Ship System Exploitation Equipment Increment-E (SSEE-Inc E)

Although Mr. Sutton retired from government service in 2012, he continues to serve the American people as a Red Cross Disaster Volunteer and was selected as the 2022 Red Cross Disaster Volunteer of the year for North Florida!

Mr. Richard “Dick” Sutton, you are the definition of a national treasure! The United States Navy and hundreds of communities are better because you.  Thank you for your service sir! 

Very Respectfully,
Station HYPO

Mr. Sutton on the right
Famous Dick Sutton’s original drawing
Famous Dick Sutton’s original drawing