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					   Frank Beto and the USS Chase




 Frank Beto
   and the
Mighty Chase


               2003-4




             USS Chase
DE 158 - APD 54 (Fast Attack Transport)
Frank Beto and the USS Chase


      Contents
                                 Frank Beto and the USS Chase

                            Frank Beto and “The Mighty Chase”
                                Compiled in the year 2003
                                 by Richard Beto, his son

About Frank Beto
       Frank Edward Beto was born on December 22, 1907, at Rosebud, Harrison County, West
Virginia. He was the son of Joe Betonti and Catherine Scalise. He had one sister.
       After graduating from Harrison County high schools, Frank attended Salem College from
1931 to 1936. He earned an A.B. in 1936 and was issued a high school certificate first class
enabling him to teach industrial arts and special studies in West Virginia high schools from July
1, 1936 to July 1, 1941.
       At the age of 34, on January 29, 1942, Frank enlisted in the U.S. Navy. He served for
almost four years and was honorably discharged October 23, 1945. He was commended for
courage during the kamikaze attack on his ship, the U.S.S. Chase, May 20, 1945.
       Back in civilian life, Frank married a fellow teacher from Roosevelt-Wilson High School,
Charity Wheeler White, who later became a physical education professor at WVU. They were
married in Winchester, Kentucky, on August 30, 1948.
       A WVU transcript signed by registrar J. Everatt Long, October 15, 1952, indicates that
Navy veteran Frank Beto earned college credits 1948-50 at Clarksburg Extension, attended WVU
1950-52 and withdrew from college July 15, 1952.
       Frank and Charity produced one son, Richard, who was born October 28, 1954. They
were divorced in 1969. Frank died November 18, 1973 at the age of 65.

World War II and U.S.S. Chase
        During the years that Frank Beto was in the U.S. Navy, World War II was fought on land
and sea.
        Frank was at sea part of that time, on a destroyer referred to as the “Mighty Chase” by
those whose lives depended on the ship and the men who served her.
        On May 20, 1945, five miles north of Kerama Retto, Okinawa, the Chase was attacked by
a kamikaze plane and survived. Research was conducted in several areas to discover the facts
about this attack, including official military records and personal accounts.
        One web site explored was Destroyer Escort dot com, where three crew members from
Chase DE 158 were registered. They were Frank Masiello, Jack Moran, and Henry Rizzo. Photo-
graphs and information were obtained from Rizzo and Moran. After the attack Moran had man-
aged to slip a letter past the censors to his wife Madelyn, describing the incident. The letter,
“ship’s diary,” and transcripts of radio transmissions are shown in the following pages, along
with Frank Beto’s Commendation as a result of his courageous action after the attack.
             Frank Beto and the USS Chase



                         Frank Beto

                         Circa 1943
                         Home on leave

                         Broadway Avene
                         Clarksburg, WV




Frank Beto   Charity Wheeler
               White Beto
Frank Beto and the USS Chase




                            Front and back of a yellowed,
                            tattered war memento Frank kept.




  Frank’s naval identification card, shown below actual
  size, is in a plastic sleeve and two rusted grommets
  hold it together for the duration. On the back is
  Charity’s photograph (left).
                       Frank Beto and the USS Chase




USS Chase, DE 158 • Launched and Christened April 24, 1943 • Norfolk, Virginia
Frank Beto and the USS Chase
Frank Beto and the USS Chase
Frank Beto and the USS Chase
Frank Beto and the USS Chase
     Frank Beto and the USS Chase




          Profile of APD




USS Chase, APD 54, Pacific Ocean, 1945
        Frank Beto and the USS Chase




Chase
         Frank Beto and the USS Chase




Lt. George O. Knapp, Chase commander, cuts the
second battlestar cake. There are two candles, repre-
senting battles in which the ship was engaged.. Frank
Beto is at left in white t-shirt and Rizzo is in the
background.
Frank Beto and the USS Chase




                               Hank Rizzo, age 18
                              Frank Beto and the USS Chase




       Chase




Documentation on back of the above photo
                       Frank Beto and the USS Chase




Chase Ballroom Party
Boston, Mass.
                            Frank Beto and the USS Chase




 “Doc” and May Pearcy, and Frank Beto




Carpenter’s Mate
Second Class                                          Frank Beto and Charity White



                                                    Charles “Doc” Pearcy, Charity
                                                    White, and Frank Beto

                                                    These three were on the faculty at
                                                    Roosevelt-Wilson High School in
                                                    Clarksburg, W.Va. Their photos are
                                                    in the 1942 yearbook, Comecho.
                                                    The yearbook says: “Seniors lose
                                                    two friends and two classmates to
                                                    the army – Mr. Beto, Mr. Pearcy,
                                                    Winfred DeWeese, and Paul Queen.”
                                                    Frank Beto was 34 years old when
                                                    he enlisted in the Navy.
                                Frank Beto and the USS Chase




Frank Beto and Charles “Doc” Pearcy, rest and relaxation.




Frank and “Doc”
were teachers
before enlisting in
1942.




                           “Doc” and Frank.



                                                               Frank Beto hugging Charity
                                                               White and May Pearcy.

                                                               Frank was in the Navy
                                                               1/29/42 to 10/13/45. He
                                                               and Charity were married
                                                               Aug. 30, 1948 in
                                                               5Winchester, Kentucky.
                        Frank Beto and the USS Chase




                “Doc” and May Pearcy, Charity White and Frank Beto




                                                            “Doc” Pearcy
                                                            and
                                                            Frank Beto




Out on the Town...
Frank Beto, second
from right.
Frank Beto and the USS Chase
Frank Beto and the USS Chase
Frank Beto and the USS Chase
Frank Beto and the USS Chase
Frank Beto and the USS Chase
Frank Beto and the USS Chase
Frank Beto and the USS Chase
                   Frank Beto and the USS Chase



                        Appendix
               (pages are not numbered)

Destroyer Escort.com (one page)
E-mail messages
Chase dedication
(USS Chase (DE-158) built by Norfolk Navy Yard, Au-
thorized by Act of Congress, Feb. 6, 1942, Launched and
christened April 24, 1943, Commissioned July 18, 1943
Chase reunion 6/4/02
Chase Diary and History; origin of name
Ships of the US Navy, 1940-1945
Summary of operations (one page)
War diary for 3 days in May 1944 (3 pages)
Action Report April 11, 1945
SECRET 7/7/45 memo about action report
Okinawa map and info
Elegy in Okinawa, 7/20,2000, Washington Post
Chase info from internet
Chase certificate, received two battle stars
US Navy ship list
Ship’s log operation plan 20 April 1944
Amphibious Recon Battalion 1943-1945 records
Sources of photos & info
Immigrant list
SECRET files June 10, 1945

				
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