Duerden, Robert F., 84, Retired U.S. Marine Corps Master Gunnery Sergeant, of Green Valley, AZ, passed away on January 16. He was a former resident of Abington and Boston, MA. He was predeceased by his loving wife of 44 years, Marie I. Duerden (Gearin). He is survived by a wonderful sister, Carole A. Lee of Millis, MA and many nieces and nephews. He was the son of the late Ralph E. and Mary J. (Long) Duerden. Born in 1936, Mr. Duerden grew up in the Jamaica Plain section of Boston. He attended public schools and graduated from Boston Trade High School in 1953. That same year he enlisted in the Marine Corps. After recruit and technical training, he was attached to Marine Fighter Squadron (VMF)-217 at the Naval Air Station, Squantum, MA, as an F-4U Corsair aircraft mechanic/plane captain. Following other various assignments, he remained in the active Marine Air Reserve. He was promoted to Master Gunnery Sergeant in 1976 and was assigned as Aircraft Maintenance Chief for Marine Attack Squadron (VMA)-322, Naval Air Station, South Weymouth, MA. VMA-322 was the last Marine jet squadron in New England. He retired from the Marine Corps in 1985 after 32 years of proud active and reserve service. He was also a serviceman for Boston Gas. Mr. Duerden received the 1979 Meritorious Service Award from the American Gas Association for rescuing four elderly women from a burning home in Abington. He eventually became the Chief Dispatcher for Emergency Services. He retired from Boston Gas in 1998. Soon after, he and his wife moved to Arizona where they built their dream home. Among many military organizations, he belonged to the Marine Corps League, the Marine Corps Aviation Association, the Tailhook Association, Skyhawk Association and the Top Three Association. In Lieu of flowers, donations may be made in Robert’s name to the Semper Fi Fund: www.Semperfifund.org. Services will be private.
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