Asoka de Silva (admiral)

Asoka de Silva

Vice Admiral Asoka de Silva
Born 1931
Died December 22, 2006 (aged 7475)
Allegiance Sri Lanka Sri Lanka
Service/branch Sri Lanka Navy
Years of service 1950–1986
Rank Vice Admiral
Commands held Commander of the Sri Lanka Navy
Other work Sri Lanka's Ambassador to Cuba

Vice Admiral A. H. Asoka de Silva, VSV, ndc, psc, SLN (1931– December 22, 2006) was the Commander of the Sri Lanka Navy from 1983 to 1986. He was a Sri Lankan Ambassador to Cuba.

Early life & education

Born to a renowned surgeon and one time superintendent of the De Soysa Maternity Hospital in Colombo, Dr. A.H.T de Silva and Mrs. Beatrice de Silva (née Rodrigo -daughter of Mudaliyar Thomas Rodrigo), Asoka was the third child of a family of eight members.

Educated at the Royal College, Colombo where he was the senior sergeant commanding the Royal College cadet contingent.

De Silva joined the then Royal Ceylon Navy as an Officer Cadet, soon after leaving school in 1950. After completing his assault-training course he was sent to Britannia Royal Naval College in Dartmouth for basic training. There he became a Midshipman and subsequently as an acting Sub Lieutenant. In later years he would receive specialized training in communication at HMS Mercury, thereafter attend the Royal Naval College, Greenwich and graduate from the Defence Services Staff College, Wellington and the National Defence College, New Delhi.

Naval career

In 1953 he was commissioned to the rank of Sub Lieutenant after completing basic training after which he was elevated to the rank of Lieutenant in 1955, Lieutenant Commander in and 1963. From 1969 to 1970 he was the defence attaché, at the Sri Lanka High Commission in London before being promoted to Commander in November 1970. After which he was the commanding officer HMCyS Gajabahu the flagship of the fleet and the Co-ordinating Officer of the Polonnaruwa District during the 1971 Insurrection. He was the Naval Officer-in Charge of Trincomalee when he was promoted to the rank of Captain in 1973 after which he was the Master of MV Lanka Kanthi of the Ceylon Shipping Corporation before becoming Chief Staff Officer (Operations). He went on to serve as the Co-ordinating Officer TAFII (East) and Director Naval Operations when on February 4, 1978 he was made Commodore. July 1, 1979 he assumed duties as the Chief of Staff at Naval Headquarters, SLNS Ranagala after which he was promoted to the rank of Rear Admiral. In June 1983 he was made Commander of the Navy, a post he would hold till his retirement at the age of 55, on 1 November 1986 at which point he became the first Sri Lankan Officer to be elevated to the rank of Vice Admiral in the Sri Lanka Navy. Simultaneously acting as the Commander -in-Chief of the joint Services Special Operations Command Headquarters established in Vavuniya.

During his long career in the Navy he received the Vishista Seva Vibhushanaya, the Ceylon Armed Services Long Service Medal and clasp, President's Inauguration Medal, the Purna Bhumi Padakkama and the Sri Lanka Navy 25th Anniversary Medal.

Vice Admiral Asoka de Silva was also the Chairman of the Sri Lanka Navy Sports Board and Chairman of the Defence Services Sports Board.

Later life

After retirement, he became Sri Lanka's Ambassador to Cuba.

See also

External links

Military offices
Preceded by
A.W.H. Perera
Commander of the Sri Lanka Navy
Succeeded by
H.A. Silva

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