Diego Hernandez Sanfeliz

Managing Real Estate Broker with Fathom Realty PB00068179

Diego Hernandez Sanfeliz was born in San Juan, Puerto Rico back in 1934.  After graduating from high school, he attended the Illinois Institute of Technology.  He received a Navy ROTC scholarship in 1955, earning a degree in Physics.  After graduation, he was commissioned as an Ensign, in 1956 he was designated as a Naval Aviator.

He saw action in Vietnam, he also served as Aide and Flag Lieutenant to Commander Carrier Division. By 1980 he was promoted to Captain taking command of the aircraft carrier USS John F. Kennedy.  In 1981, he was in charge of the Third Fleet which included 40 ships, 200 aircraft, and roughly 50,000 sailors, airmen and Marines from the United States, Japan, Australia and Canada. He retired in 1991.

What you may not know about Vice Admiral Hernandez is that he was the first Hispanic American to be named Vice Commander of the North American Aerospace Defense Command or (NORAD).

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Comments (20)

Barbara Todaro
RE/MAX Executive Realty - Happily Retired - Franklin, MA
Previously Affiliated with The Todaro Team

Good morning, James Dray 

here's Capt. Sanfeliz

Diego E. Hernández - Wikipedia


The USS John F Kennedy

Diego E. Hernández - Wikipedia

Jul 27, 2020 02:49 AM
Raymond E. Camp
Ontario, NY

Good morning James,

I bet he had his nose to the grindstone to get ahead.

Make yourself an interesting day.

Jul 27, 2020 04:10 AM
Wayne Martin
Wayne M Martin - Chicago, IL
Real Estate Broker - Retired

Good morning James. He knew only one way, forward! Enjoy your day.

Jul 27, 2020 04:30 AM
Nina Hollander, Broker
Coldwell Banker Realty - Charlotte, NC
Your Greater Charlotte Realtor

Good morning, James... as they say... "someone had to be first." And Vice Commander Sanfeliz certainly deserved that honor. I always have a special "feeling" for the JFK carrier, as one of its captains, Rear Admiral Julian Lake was the father of one of my college roommates and sorority sisters. He captained this ship from 1969-1970. When he was still a Captain he was doing graduate work at George Washington U where Julia and I were undergraduates and would often take us out to dinner. I can tell you when he was in his dress whites and walked into a room, everyone stopped and looked.

Jul 27, 2020 04:35 AM
Nina Hollander, Broker

Michael Jacobs thanks, Michael. Captain Lake (as I always thought of him as he didn't become an Admiral till after I was out of college) was movie-star handsome and absolute perfect in dress whites.

Jul 27, 2020 12:26 PM
Michael Jacobs

Nina Hollander - what a nice memory to share.  

Jul 27, 2020 06:22 AM
John Juarez

What a class act!

Aug 07, 2020 01:10 PM
Bob "RealMan" Timm
Ward County Notary Services - Minot, ND
Owner of Ward Co Notary Services retired RE Broker

Thank you for sharing another GREAT success story James Dray .I love how many great Americans served in out military services.

Jul 27, 2020 05:17 AM
Roy Kelley
Retired - Gaithersburg, MD

Thank you very much, James, for sharing this interesting story.

Take care, be safe and have a great day.

Jul 27, 2020 05:22 AM
Nick Vandekar, 610-203-4543
Long & Foster Real Estate Inc 610-225-7400 - Devon, PA
Selling the Main Line & Chester County

A man who showed that celings are not there to hold you back and can be broken through. An example to many of what can be acheived. He earned a lot of medals in his career.

Jul 27, 2020 05:56 AM
Donald Urschalitz
Lubeck Realty Group - Jupiter, FL
P.A. Realtor ABR RSPS North Palm Beach County

Talent knows no bounds.

Jul 27, 2020 06:06 AM
Grant Schneider
Performance Development Strategies - Armonk, NY
Your Coach Helping You Create Successful Outcomes

Good morning James Dray - he has had a remarkable career ans service. 

Jul 27, 2020 06:23 AM
Michael Jacobs
Pasadena, CA
Los Angeles Pasadena 818.516.4393

Hello James - thank you for sharing another story of our history. 

Jul 27, 2020 06:24 AM
Sheri Sperry - MCNE®
Coldwell Banker Realty - Sedona, AZ
(928) 274-7355 ~ YOUR Solutions REALTOR®

Hi James Dray - This is the kind of career my husband might have liked to entertain but then life got in the way and he met me!

Jul 27, 2020 07:25 AM
Brian England
Ambrose Realty Management LLC - Gilbert, AZ
MBA, GRI, REALTOR® Real Estate in East Valley AZ

You definitely are the history buff that I never was and I learn about new people each and every day from your posts.

Jul 27, 2020 07:30 AM
Jeffrey DiMuria 321.223.6253 Waves Realty
Waves Realty - Melbourne, FL
Florida Space Coast Homes

I love reading about the many people you post, especially the hero's who have been part of our military.

Jul 27, 2020 08:26 AM
Will Hamm
Hamm Homes - Aurora, CO
"Where There's a Will, There's a Way!"

Good Morning James Dray and once again a first for a great man that must of made it a point to work his way up and had big dreams.


Jul 27, 2020 08:30 AM
Kathy Streib
Cypress, TX
Home Stager/Redesign

Hi James- another first!!!!  Thank you for educating us. 

Jul 27, 2020 10:49 AM
Ron and Alexandra Seigel
Napa Consultants - Carpinteria, CA
Luxury Real Estate Branding, Marketing & Strategy


What a great story on one of the first, and the word NORAD is definitely something I remembered.  And I loved that Nina Hollander reminiscence of a father's friend.  A

Jul 27, 2020 12:23 PM
Bob Crane
Woodland Management Service / Woodland Real Estate, KW Diversified - Stevens Point, WI
Forestland Experts! 715-204-9671

Hi James,  Thank you for sharing another great story.  I really like learning of these "firsts".

Jul 27, 2020 05:30 PM
Endre Barath, Jr.
Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices California Properties - Beverly Hills, CA
Realtor - Los Angeles Home Sales 310.486.1002

Well how about that the Military was always an equal opportunity employer and promoter of those who deserved it...Endre

Jul 27, 2020 10:28 PM
Jeff Dowler, CRS
eXp Realty of California, Inc. - Carlsbad, CA
The Southern California Relocation Dude

Hi James:

Thank you for another interesting read - he certainly had an impressive military career and earned a well-deserved honor.

I enjoyed Nina’s comment in particular.


Aug 04, 2020 01:35 PM
John Juarez
The Medford Real Estate Team - Fremont, CA

Diego Hernandez Sanfeliz had a dedication to his career, his branch of service and to his Country that is very admirable.

Aug 07, 2020 01:09 PM