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Garret G. Ackerson, Jr
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Birth: May 13, 1904
Bergen County
New Jersey, USA
Death: Sep. 14, 1992
Essex County
Massachusetts, USA

Ackerson, Garret G., Jr. (1904-1992) of Hackensack, Bergen County, N.J.; Lexington, Middlesex County, Mass. Born in Hackensack, Bergen County, N.J., May 13, 1904. Married to Rhodita Ellen Edwards and Suzanne Addor. Foreign Service officer; U.S. Vice Consul in Cape Town, 1928-29; U.S. Consul in Havana, 1943. Died, from kidney failure and Parkinson's disease, in Lexington, Middlesex County, Mass., September 15, 1992

His obituary-

GARRET G. ACKERSON JR.: Garret G. Ackerson Jr., 88, a retired Foreign Service officer who headed U.S. legations and embassies behind the Iron Curtain during critical periods of the Cold War, died Sept. 14 at his home in Lexington, Mass. He had Parkinson's disease and suffered kidney failure.

Mr. Ackerson retired from the Foreign Service in 1961 after having served four years as U.S. charge d'affairs in Budapest. He assumed that post in 1957, months after the Soviet Union's crushing of the 1956 Hungarian uprising, and it was during his years as chief of the U.S. legation that Josef Cardinal Mindszenty, the Roman Catholic primate of Hungary, took refuge there. Mr. Ackerson also had served in Budapest in 1940. In this period he had used the diplomatic immunity of his home to hide refugees fleeing Poland after the outbreak of World War II.

Mr. Ackerson was born in Hackensack, N.J. He attended the University of Virginia and graduated from Harvard University. He joined the Foreign Service in 1928 and was assigned initially to Capetown, South Africa, as vice consul.

He served in Latin America and Denmark, and in a variety of capacities in Washington, including chief of the division of foreign personnel of the diplomatic service, and in 1949 as chief of the division of Southeast European affairs. He was removed from that job for refusing to fire several people whom Sen. Joseph R. McCarthy (R-Wisc.) had made targets for dismissal from the State Department.

Mr. Ackerson was counselor and charge d'affairs in Warsaw from 1950 to 1952, in Prague in 1953 and 1954, and he was minister in Buenos Aires from 1955 to 1957.

After his retirement from the Foreign Service, Mr. Ackerson became European director of the International Rescue Committee, a private relief agency. He was based in Geneva and oversaw resettlement of refugees from the Soviet Union, Eastern Europe, Africa and the Middle East. In 1968, he went to Vietnam to set up a refugee relief effort for people displaced by the Southeast Asian war.

He retired from the International Rescue Committee in 1987 and had lived since then in Lexington.

His first wife, Rhodita Ellen Edwards Ackerson, died in 1971. Survivors include his wife, Suzanne Addor Ackerson of Lexington; three children by his first marriage, Garret G. Ackerson III of Grand Rapids, Mich., Edmund E. Ackerson of Belmont, Mass., and Rhoda A. Wyer of New York; 12 grandchildren; and eight great-grandchildren. 
Created by: K
Record added: Aug 31, 2011
Find A Grave Memorial# 75742904


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