Harold W. Jesse – Commander, United States Navy

Retired U.S. Navy Commander Harold W. Jesse, 79, also of Jekyll Island, Georgia, a decorated naval officer, airborne electronics pioneer and entrepreneur, died September 27, 2005, at Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center, Lebanon, of heart failure.

He was born in 1926 in Hackensack, New Jersey, the son of Louis and Henriette Jesse.

Commander Jesse graduated from Hackensack High School in 1944. He was appointed to the U.S. Naval Academy in Annapolis, Maryland, class of 1948A. Jesse received flight training at the Naval Air Station, Pensacola, Florida, and became a naval aviator. He attended the Naval Postgraduate School in Monterey, California, receiving his master of science degree in electrical engineering.

A career naval officer, Jesse served in the Korean War. He was one of the pioneers of modern military airborne electronics.

Upon retirement, Jesse moved to Amherst, where he resided for the next 28 years, serving as selectman. He was a co-founder of TME, Inc. of Hudson.

Commander Jesse had a lifelong passion for contract bridge and cribbage, and, later in life, became an avid golfer. He was a member of the Nashua Country Club, Jekyll Island Golf Club, and Hooper Golf Club, Wal-pole.

Jesse was predeceased by his first wife of 49 years, Alice Smith Pool, in 1997.

Upon her death, he moved to Jekyll Island where they had often vacationed.

In 1999, he married Helen Daigle of Keene.

In addition to his wife, the family includes three sons, H. William Jesse, Jr. of San Francisco, Robert L. Jesse of Richmond, Virginia, Philip D. Jesse of Augusta, Georgia.; a daughter, Mary J. Petersen of Sterling, Virginia.; nine grandchildren; and a brother, Edwin Jesse of Toms River, N.J.. Calling hours are Sunday from 3 to 6 p.m. at Foley Funeral Home, 49 Court St., Keene.

He will be buried in Arlington National Cemetery with full military honors.

In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made to American Heart Association, Northeast Affiliate, Two Wall St., Manchester 03101.


  • DATE OF BIRTH: 06/11/1926
  • DATE OF DEATH: 09/27/2005

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