Gerald F. “Fish” Deconto
September 11, 2001
Captain Gerald Deconto was a graduate of U.S. Naval Academy, a career Naval Surface Warrior, Commanding Officer, and Major Command screener. In August 2001, he was assigned as Director of the Navy Command Center (NCC) at the Pentagon. Although it was not his duty day, upon the terrorist attack on the World Trade Center, Deconto proceeded to the NCC to direct the Navy response to the attacks. Twenty minutes before the attack on the Pentagon, he unceremoniously directed multiple senior DoD and DoN personnel back to their offices so that his watch team could perform their duties. Ten minutes after they were cleared, the Pentagon was attacked. Deconto and his NCC team were all killed in the attack.
“Fish” was an old school leader. When things went well, he gave the credit to his sailors. When things did not go well, he kept the heat off them and held himself accountable. The men and women under his command would follow him anywhere. He was proud of the Navy, the Class of ‘79, his hometown, and his family and friends.
Not everyone in the Navy knew who Gerry Deconto was, but everyone knew “The Fish”!