Tuesday, February 27, 2024

Avenue of Heroes: Helen Tuttle Boulton Fargo

Prepared by: Keith Fargo (son)

Helen Tuttle Boulton Fargo was a Navy Nurse who admirably served overseas during World War II at Fleet Hospitals in the South Pacific. She was born in 1919 in the small farming town of Colusa, California. Graduating from high school in 1937, she matriculated to UC Berkeley where she was nicknamed ‘Tut,’ a name that stuck for life. Transferring to Stanford, she earned her Bachelor of Arts in Nursing in 1943. Following graduation, she joined the Navy and was commissioned as an Ensign in the Nurse Corps. She served at Fleet Hospital 105 in New Caledonia and Fleet Hospital 108 in Guadalcanal. At these posts, Tut compassionately treated service members involved in some of the most decisive battles in the South Pacific. After the war, she was assigned to Naval Hospital
Treasure Island, until leaving the Navy in 1946.

Before the Navy sent her overseas, she met Thomas Arthur Boulton, a 1943 United States Naval Academy graduate. Their relationship continued long distance and they married after the war in 1947. Once married, three children were added to the family – Thomas Arthur in 1948, Barbara Ann in 1949, and Keith Tuttle in 1952.

In 1957, Tom was tragically killed in an aircraft carrier landing accident. The accident left Helen with three small children to raise on her own. Remaining firm in the belief that ‘the kids’ needed a father, Tut stayed in Coronado. Two and a half years later, Tut’s close friend introduced her to Captain William (Bill) B. Fargo, a 1939 Naval Academy graduate. Helen and Bill were married on October 3, 1959.

Tut’s Naval lineage ran deep – she was the daughter of a World War I Naval Aviator, Ensign Darwin Tuttle; the wife to two Naval Officers, Commander Thomas Boulton and Captain Bill Fargo; and mother of two Naval Officers, Captain Keith Fargo and Admiral Tom Fargo. Helen Tut Fargo loved her life in Coronado where she enjoyed family and many close friends. Tut played golf and bridge and enjoyed gardening and traveling. She died in Coronado on October 14, 1997. Tut’s life story exemplified her dedication to her family, the Navy, and Coronado.

The Avenue of Heroes military service recognition program is sponsored by the City of Coronado. Introduced in 2014, the program has honored 246 hometown heroes to date. On November 4, 2023, another 16 were honored. City staff and volunteers from the Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 2422, the Coronado Historical Association and Third and Fourth Streets Neighborhood Association oversee its operation.
In 2011, the program was inspired spontaneously with the movement of two Navy SEALs to their final resting place. News spread quickly and the local Rotary Club passed out American flags. People lined Fourth Street to honor the fallen service members. As the procession approached the Coronado Bridge, a lone Navy SEAL stood at attention, saluting as he waited for the passage of his comrades. That moment made clear that Third and Fourth streets were already an Avenue of Heroes.
That spontaneous beginning launched the program in May 2015 with 18 banners. The Avenue of Heroes is a reminder that Coronado has a rich history and legacy of service to the country.

Managing Editor
Managing Editor
Originally from upstate New York, Dani Schwartz has lived in Coronado since 1996. She is happy to call Coronado home and to have raised her children here. In her free time she enjoys reading, exercising, trying new restaurants, and just walking her dog around the "island." Have news to share? Send tips or story ideas to: [email protected]

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