FT. MEADE, Md., –
2019 NSA/CSS Cryptologic Memorial Wall Observance Honors
Staff Sergeant Donald D. Daugherty, USA
On 28 May 2019, GEN Paul Nakasone, USA, Commander, U.S. Cyber Command and Director, NSA/ Chief, CSS hosted the NSA/CSS Cryptologic Memorial Wall
Observance in honor of SSG Donald D. Daugherty, USA (20 February 1937 to 13 April 1966), who lost his life in South Vietnam.
The ceremony commenced with the Presentation of Colors, followed by the National Anthem, sung by Technical Sergeant Jessica D. Cain, USAF. Colonel Chaplain James D. Tims, USAF, then delivered the invocation prior to MGySgt Scott H. Stalker’s (USMC, USCYBERCOM and NSA/CSS Command Senior Enlisted Leader) welcoming remarks and GEN Nakasone’s keynote address.
During GEN Nakasone’s keynote address, he welcomed SSG Daugherty’s family members, including niece Maureen Roll, nephew Matthew Brents, wife Cathi and their daughters Ariana and Addison. GEN Nakasone spoke of the significance of the NSA/CSS Cryptologic Memorial Wall and the importance of the inscription, “They Served in Silence.” He explained the Wall “serves as a constant reminder of the seriousness of our mission.” And, like the 177 men and women currently inscribed on the Wall, remembering SSG Daugherty’s own story of heroism is reflective of the courage, patriotism, and dedication our military, civilian, and intelligence professionals have demonstrated throughout history. At the conclusion of his speech, he stated, “Every day our workforce passes by the wall and we are humbled. It serves as a reminder of our commitment which we embrace every day as a citizen of our Nation and employee of the National Security Agency.”
Following GEN Nakasone’s keynote address, MGySgt Stalker shared SSG Donald D. Daugherty’s, USA, heroic story, explaining the California native was one of three service members killed in action by a surprise Viet Cong mortar and sapper attack at Tan Son Nhut airfield in South Vietnam on 13 April 1966. Daugherty was attempting to get to a nearby arms room for weapons to defend against the attack when a mortar shell struck the sidewalk directly in front of him.
The ceremony concluded with GEN Nakasone and MGySgt Stalker placing the traditional wreath on the NSA/CSS Cryptologic Memorial Wall.
Daugherty’s niece Maureen Roll shared the impact that “Uncle Don’s” death had on her family in 1966 and over the years. She described him as a very thoughtful man, who always sent her family gifts from wherever he was serving. She still wears a sapphire ring he sent her and spoke of the trinkets her family received over the years. She recalled him being a woodworker in his spare time, when he built a picnic table and stool. He was also a risk taker hanging off their home’s balcony and “rough-housing.” Roll speculated that “Uncle Don” would have thought today’s ceremony was “a very special experience.”