In Memoriam: Eugene J. Mysona


The Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution announces with great sorrow the death March 8, 1995 of retired Chief Mate and Master Eugene J. Mysona of Woods Hole at Falmouth Hospital after a brief illness. He was 78.

Gene Mysona was born in New Bedford, MA in 1916 and attended schools there, graduating from New Bedford High School in 1933. He began employment at the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution in 1936, working for several months as an ordinary seaman aboard Research Vessel Atlantis in 1936-1937 and again for a brief period during 1939-1940 between positions as a clerk, cook and fisherman. He joined the U.S. Navy in 1941 and served as Chief Quartermaster from 1941 to 1945, most of that time aboard the destroyer U.S.S. Flusser. He received the Purple Heart for wounds received during the Battle of Leyte Gulf.

Following military service in World War II Gene Mysona returned to WHOI and was named cook aboard Research Vessel Reliance. He was promoted to Mate aboard Balanus a few months later, and in 1947 was named Master of that vessel. In 1950 he transferred to Seal to serve as Master, and in 1951 to Albatross III. In 1952 Gene was named Master of the Bear, and except for a few months as Master of Atlantis in 1959, he served as Master of Bear until 1962. He worked ashore in Purchasing for a brief period that same year before returning to marine operations as Chief Mate aboard Research Vessel Chain, where he remained until the ship’s retirement from the WHOI fleet in 1975. During this time he sailed relief on several other WHOI vessels, including positions as Second Mate and Chief Mate aboard the Institution’s new Research Vessel Atlantis II in 1963, as operator of Asterias in 1966, and as Acting Master of Chain in 1974. Gene transferred to Research Vessel Oceanus, which had just joined the WHOI fleet, in 1976 and served aboard that ship as Chief Mate and Acting Master during the next few years before he retired from WHOI in 1978.

He was an avid collector of antiques and nautical items, including scrimshaw. He also loved Gilbert & Sullivan operas, and for many years was a season ticket holder of the College Light Opera Company of Falmouth.

Gene Mysona is survived by two sons, David M. Mysona of Hatchville, MA, and Steven J. Mysona of Woods Hole, MA; one sister, Albina Ward, of New Bedford, MA; a grandson, Finian Small, of Portland, OR; and a granddaughter, Lily Clair Mysona, of Falmouth, MA. He was also the father of Richard F. Mysona, who died in 1971.

Calling hours will be held Sunday, March 12, from 2 to 4 p.m. at the Chapman, Cole and Gleason Funeral Home on Route 28A in West Falmouth. A funeral mass will be held March 13 at 9 a.m. at St. Joseph’s Church on Millfield Street in Woods Hole, followed by burial at the Massachusetts National Cemetery in Bourne. Donations in Gene Mysona’s memory may be made to the charity of one’s choice.


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