During the month of October, the 49th Lights for Peace flag to fly at the Fort Taber – Fort Rodman Military Museum honors the memory of George Samanica Furtado, from South Dartmouth, who passed away in 1959 at the age of 35. Furtado served in the United States Navy aboard the USS Vincennes during WWII.
Furtado was born on May 15,1924 and lived in South Dartmouth, MA for most of his life. While in school he studied welding and blacksmithing.
He was inducted into the United States Navy on August 30,1943 at the age of 19. Furtado attended Naval Training School in Newport, RI. He began his career as an Apprentice Seaman (AS) and was promoted to the rank of Seaman 2nd Class (S2c) and eventually Seaman 1st Clast (S1c).
Furtado served in the United States Navy from 1943 to 1945, much of his time served aboard the USS Vincennes. According to the historyofwar.org, the “USS Vincennes (CL-64) was a Cleveland class light cruiser which fought in the Pacific, taking part in the battle of the Philippine Sea, the invasion of the Philippines, the battle of Okinawa and the raids on the Japanese home islands. She was awarded six battle stars for her World War II service.”
S1c was honorably discharged from the United States Navy in December 1945 and received the following awards: The WWII Victory Medal, the American Campaign Medal, the Asiatic-Pacific Theatre Medal with 4 bronze stars. And the Philippine Liberation Medal with 2 bronze stars.
After completing his military service, Furtado worked as a Special Police Officer assigned to Jones Beach in Dartmouth, MA. He was a communicant of St. Mary’s Church and was a member of the Portuguese-American Social Club.
Tragically, George S. Furtado died on August 12, 1959, at the age of 35 from a heart condition. He left behind his wife, Mrs. Almorinda (Martin) Furtado and a son, Kenneth G. Furtado, who was seven years old at the time. Furtado is buried in the Veterans Section of St. John’s Cemetery in New Bedford.
The surviving relatives of George S. Furtado include his son, Lt. Kenneth Furtado, now a retired Police Office from UMASS Dartmouth, Kenneth’s wife, Brenda (Sylvia) Furtado and two nephews, Robert Furtado of So. Dartmouth and Antone Demello of No. Dartmouth.
Other relatives who have passed, include: his wife, his mother, the late Mrs. Rose Enos Furtado; four brothers: the late Manuel, Antone, Gilbert and Frank Furtado; three sisters: the late Mrs. Mary Mello, Mrs. Lena DeMello and Miss Gloria Furtado.
If you would like to contact Kenneth Furtado directly, with any questions regarding his father, he can be reached at email@example.com.
Linda Ferreira, of Empire Ford of New Bedford, researches the life histories of area residents. American flags are provided by Empire Ford of New Bedford. Flags are raised by the staff at Fort Taber – Fort Rodman Military Museum. Those who would like to honor a local veteran in the future can contact Ferreira at firstname.lastname@example.org.