William "Deke" Parsons, Rear Admiral (1901 - 1953)

William ‘Deke’ Parsons Photo

Willaim "Deke" Parsons was born in Evanston, Illinois. In March 1943, Capt. Parsons joined the Manhattan Project as leader of the Ordnance Division. Capt. Parsons was also the head of Project Alberta, which oversaw the various responsibilities necessary for the actual delivery of the bombs.

Capt. Parsons was a member of the crew of the Enola Gay, since the Little Boy bomb was armed in-flight due to its unstable design.

He continued to be involved with nuclear issues for the rest of his career. In 1946, he worked to organize Operation Crossroads, a series of nuclear tests in the Pacific. He eventually rose to the rank of Rear Admiral. On December 5, 1953, he died from a heart attack at Bethesda, Maryland.

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