Leroy (Roy) Thomas Van Dyne

Published 9:30 pm Friday, March 18, 2016

Leroy (Roy) Thomas Van Dyne
April 13, 1937 – March 14, 2016



On March 14, 2016, Leroy (Roy) Thomas Van Dyne joined many of his former Submariner shipmates on ‘The Eternal Patrol’ when he lost his battle with neuroendocrine cancer.

Roy graduated with the Ithaca (New York) High School Class of 1955.  Soon afterward he enlisted in the United States Navy as a Seaman Recruit, retiring in 1979 as a Lieutenant Commander, Submarine Qualified.

He enjoyed a prestigious military career that spanned more than 24 years and included service as an enlisted sailor, a warrant officer and a commissioned officer.  He was assigned to the USS Hugh Purvis, the USS Chivo (DBF!), the USS Thomas Jefferson, the USS Howard W. Gilmore and the USS Theodore Roosevelt, in support of conventional and nuclear weapons systems. Roy was the first former “Mustang” (enlisted to officer w/o college degree) to be assigned as an officer aboard a nuclear submarine.

After retiring from the Navy, he completed his bachelor degree requirements from National-Louis University, Washington, DC, while supporting the US Navy Strategic Weapons Systems (SP-27) as an Engineering Consultant with Computer Sciences Corporation.

Following a second retirement, he and his beloved wife enjoyed full-time RV life for eight years while they saw the USA (the country he had defended), Canada and New Zealand. In addition, they enjoyed traveling in Europe and most recently in Asia. He was a Master Mason, a 32nd Degree Scottish Rite Mason and was very proud to be a Shriner in support of children’s hospitals. He volunteered for Eagle’s Wings and for Cancer Patient Transportation. He enjoyed woodcarving and both target shooting and sporting clays, winning numerous ribbons and awards.

Roy was born April 13, 1937 in Ithaca, New York. His parents were Robert J. and Olive Southby Van Dyne. He is survived by his wife and his very best friend of 20 years, the former Dorothy Sawyer, his son Kirk Van Dyne (Carol Ann) of Maryville, TN, his daughter Jody Van Dyne Buel (Steve) of Stafford, VA, and his sister Dawn Van Dyne Kirchgraber (Henry) of St. Petersburg, FL. In addition he is survived by his 5 favorite grandsons Josh, Chuck, Tyler, Lee and Sawyer and his 2 favorite great-grandchildren Jackson and Lillian.

Roy’s family appreciates the support of Vidant Health staff, Community Home Care and Hospice staff, the Ne’er-Do-Well Restaurant staff, and their loving friends of Somerset and beyond. Roy indeed felt loved during his final journey.

A celebration of life will be held at a later date, followed by interment in Arlington National Cemetery. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to his favorite charity:  Shriners Hospitals for Children (ATTN: Donations, 2900 Rocky Point Dr., Tampa, FL 33607).

Roy said, all in all, it was a wonderful ride.

Online condolences may be offered to the family by visiting www.paulfuneralhome.com.

Paul Funeral Home & Crematory of Washington is honored to serve the Van Dyne family.