Thomas Wright Rudderow was born at Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, on 8 August 1885. He attended the Pennsylvania Nautical School and served as navigator and watch officer in SS Adams and SS Mexico prior to assuming duties as Port Captain, Port of Philadelphia, in 1914.Commissioned Ensign in the Naval Militia of Pennsylvania on 14 July 1916, he was mustered into Federal service 7 April 1917, and assigned in May to the interned Prinz Eitel Friedrich, later renamed DeKalb. On 1 July 1918, he transferred to the U.S. Naval Reserve Force.
Philadelphia, sometimes known colloquially as Philly, is the largest city in the U.S. state and Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, and the sixth-most populous U.S. city, with a 2017 census-estimated population of 1,580,863. Since 1854, the city has been coterminous with Philadelphia County, the most populous county in Pennsylvania and the urban core of the eighth-largest U.S. metropolitan statistical area, with over 6 million residents as of 2017. Philadelphia is also the economic and cultural anchor of the greater Delaware Valley, located along the lower Delaware and Schuylkill Rivers, within the Northeast megalopolis. The Delaware Valley's population of 7.2 million ranks it as the eighth-largest combined statistical area in the United States.
Pennsylvania, officially the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, is a state located in the northeastern and Mid-Atlantic regions of the United States. The Appalachian Mountains run through its middle. The Commonwealth is bordered by Delaware to the southeast, Maryland to the south, West Virginia to the southwest, Ohio to the west, Lake Erie and the Canadian province of Ontario to the northwest, New York to the north, and New Jersey to the east.
Pennsylvania Nautical School existed in Pennsylvania, United States, from 1889–1947.
In September, he reported for duty with Destroyer Forces at Queenstown, Ireland. He served in USS Allen (DD-66) during November 1918; in USS McCall (DD-28) from December 1918 to March 1919; and under Commander, Flotilla B, Destroyer Force, Atlantic, between March and June 1919. Relieved from active duty on 25 June 1919, he remained in the Naval Reserve until transferred to the Honorary Retired List on 1 September 1939.
USS Allen (DD-66) was a Sampson-class destroyer of the United States Navy launched in 1916. She was the second Navy ship named for Lieutenant William Henry Allen (1784–1813), a naval officer during the War of 1812. She was the longest-serving destroyer on the Naval Vessel Register when she was sold in 1946 and was one of the few ships in the US Navy during World War II which was completed during World War I.
USS McCall (DD-28) was a Paulding-class destroyer in the United States Navy during World War I and later in the United States Coast Guard, designated CG-14. She was the first ship named for Edward McCall.
On 3 January 1942, shortly after World War II broke out, while Superintendent and Commanding Officer of the Pennsylvania Nautical School Ship Seneca , Lieutenant Commander Rudderow was recalled to active duty and assigned to the yacht Cythera (PY-26), another World War I veteran being fitted out for coastal patrol work. Assuming command of Cythera when she commissioned on 3 March, Lieutenant Commander Rudderow was killed when his ship was torpedoed by U-402 off the North Carolina coast on 2 May 1942. Only two of Cythera's crew survived. They were picked up by the German submarine, taken to Germany, and interned for the duration of the war.
World War II, also known as the Second World War, was a global war that lasted from 1939 to 1945. The vast majority of the world's countries—including all the great powers—eventually formed two opposing military alliances: the Allies and the Axis. A state of total war emerged, directly involving more than 100 million people from over 30 countries. The major participants threw their entire economic, industrial, and scientific capabilities behind the war effort, blurring the distinction between civilian and military resources. World War II was the deadliest conflict in human history, marked by 50 to 85 million fatalities, most of whom were civilians in the Soviet Union and China. It included massacres, the genocide of the Holocaust, strategic bombing, premeditated death from starvation and disease, and the only use of nuclear weapons in war.
USCGC Seneca or before 1915, USRC Seneca was a U.S. Coast Guard cutter built and commissioned as a "derelict destroyer" with the specific mission of locating and then destroying abandoned shipwrecks that were still afloat and were a menace to navigation. She was designed with excellent sea-keeping qualities, a long cruising range, good towing capabilities, and by necessity the capacity to store a large amount of munitions. She was one of five Coast Guard cutters serving with the U.S. Navy in European waters during World War I.
USS Cythera (SP-575/PY-26) was a US Navy patrol yacht, originally laid down as the civilian yacht Agawa for William L. Harkness, that saw service in the Atlantic during both World War I and World War II.
The Rudderow class destroyer escort Rudderow (DE-224), is named in his honor.
USS Rudderow (DE-224) was the lead ship of her class of destroyer escorts, in service with the United States Navy from 1944 to 1947. After spending decades in reserve, she was sold for scrap in 1970.
USS J. Fred Talbott (DD-156), named for Joshua Frederick Cockey Talbott (1843–1918), Representative from Maryland Second District from 1879 to 1885, from 1893 to 1895 and again from 1903 to 1918, was a Wickes-class destroyer.
USS Crane (DD-109) was a Wickes-class destroyer in the United States Navy. She is named for naval officer William M. Crane.
USS Sigourney (DD–81) was a Wickes-class destroyer in the United States Navy during World War I. She was the first ship named for James Butler Sigourney.
USS Taylor (DD-94) was a Wickes-class destroyer built in 1918 for the United States Navy, which saw service in World War I and the years following. She was named for Rear Admiral Henry Taylor.
USS Hull (DD-7) was a Hopkins-class destroyer, which was a sub-class of the Bainbridge-class destroyer, in the United States Navy, the second ship named for Commodore Isaac Hull.
USS Chew (DD-106) was a Wickes-class destroyer in the United States Navy during World War I and World War II. She was named in honor of Samuel Chew.
USS Elliot (DD-146) was a Wickes-class destroyer in the United States Navy during World War II, first reclassified as DMS-4, and later reclassified as AG-104. She was named for Lieutenant Commander Richard M. Elliot.
The second USS Blakeley (DD–150) was a Wickes-class destroyer in the United States Navy, named for Captain Johnston Blakeley.
The first USS Haraden (DD–183) was a Wickes-class destroyer in the United States Navy following World War I. She was later transferred to the Royal Canadian Navy as HMCS Columbia, as a Town-class destroyer.
The first USS Worden (DD-16) was a Truxtun-class destroyer in the United States Navy. She was named for Admiral John Lorimer Worden.
USS Preston (DD–19) was a Smith-class destroyer in the United States Navy during World War I. She was the third ship named for Samuel W. Preston.
USS R-9 (SS-86) was an R-class coastal and harbor defense submarine of the United States Navy. Her keel was laid down on 6 March 1918 by the Fore River Shipbuilding Company, Quincy, Massachusetts. She was launched on 24 May 1919 sponsored by Mrs. Irving E. Stowe, and commissioned on 30 July 1919 with Lieutenant Commander Thomas Shine in command.
USS Davis (DD-65) was a Sampson-class destroyer in the United States Navy during World War I. She was the second Navy ship named for Rear Admiral Charles Henry Davis (1807–1877). She served with the United States Coast Guard as (CG-21).
USS Satterlee (DD-190) was a Clemson-class destroyer in the United States Navy, entering service in 1919. After brief service until 1922, the ship was placed in reserve. The ship was reactivated for World War II before being transferred to the Royal Navy in 1940. Renamed HMS Belmont, the destroyer was used as a convoy escort in the Battle of the Atlantic where she was torpedoed and sunk on 31 January 1942.
USS Osmond Ingram (DD-255/AVD–9/APD-35) was a Clemson-class destroyer in the United States Navy during World War II. She was named for Osmond Ingram.
The second USS Aulick (DD-258) was a Clemson-class destroyer in the United States Navy and transferred to the Royal Navy where she served as HMS Burnham (H82) during World War II.
The second USS Ballard (DD-267/AVD-10) was a Clemson-class destroyer in the United States Navy during World War II. She was named for Edward J. Ballard.
Robert Carlisle Giffen was an admiral in the United States Navy.
USS Earl K. Olsen (DE-765) was a Cannon-class destroyer escort built for the United States Navy during World War II. She served in the Atlantic Ocean and the Pacific Ocean and provided escort service against submarine and air attack for Navy vessels and convoys. At war's end, she continued service as a training ship.
USS Hammann (DE-131) was an Edsall-class destroyer escort built for the U.S. Navy during World War II. She served in the Atlantic Ocean and provided destroyer escort protection against submarine and air attack for Navy vessels and convoys.