Spells BEGOR




Begor in Pearl Burial at Sea

SHIPMATES DEATH NOTICES. We encourage submission of death notices, obituaries or eulogies on USS Begor shipmates. Each such item received will be placed on a special Feature of this page, the SHIPMATES MEMORIAL.

You are invited to submit a death notice and/or obituary and/or personal eulogy, for your family member, shipmate or friend who was a former USS Begor crewmember, or for the spouse of a former Begor crewmember, by sending them by email to ussbegor@yahoo.com

This page last updated on August 3, 2018


Don Allen       EM2, 1951-55, age 79, of Charlotte, NC, passed away at his home of congestive heart failure on 10/25/09. He was born 8/14/30 in Mecklenburg County, NC, son of the late Claude M. and Mary Estridge Allen. In addition to his parents he was preceded in death by his wife of 50 years, Elizabeth Wilson Allen. He is survived by his daughters Claudia Harrington and husband Matt of Warner Robins, GA, and Donna Leigh Allen-Sherrill and husband Charles of Charlotte; a brother William R. Allen of Charlotte, and four grandchildren. Mr. Allen was vice-president of C.M. Allen Construction Co., a graduate of Central High School class of 1948, and Lees-McRae College. He was a US Navy veteran, serving in the Korean War aboard the USS Begor. A military funeral service was held on Oct. 28. (Excerpted from the Charlotte Observer, 10/27/09, and information from his daughter, Donna.)
      Don was an active member of the Begor Assn., regularly attending our reunions until his health problems in recent years.

      RM3, 1950-52, passed away September 2, 2001 in Waterbury, CT as reported by his wife Emma.

      Julia Lopez, daughter of shipmate Tom Gideon, reported the death of shipmate Richard Andrews, BM3 (CTC USN, Ret) (1948-51), of Peachtree, Georgia on 12 June 2007.

      As reported by his widow, Edith, shipmate Ernest C. Arduini, SF2, 1945-46,passed away in Hamburg, New Jersey in May 2006.

Top of page


Fred Bakken       Fredrick D. Bakken, 76, passed away peacefully at home in Napa, California with his family, on June 3, 2004. Fred was born July 26, 1927 in Stanley, ND. From there he moved with his family to Portland, Oregon. Fred served in the U.S. Navy from 1945-1967, retiring as master chief petty officer. His Naval service included duty on USS Begor (APD-127) from June 1947 to May 1952 as a BM2. He participated in the December 1950 destruction of the Port of Hungnam in North Korea during the Korean War.
      After retirement from the Navy, Fred worked for the Mare Island Naval Shipyard in Vallejo, California from 1968 to 1985. He loved his country, family and friends.
      He is survived by his wife, Yoko Bakken; daughters Shirley Hammond, Mary Bakken, and Tina Ibanez; sons Kurt and Carl Bakken; sons-in-law Erik Hammond, and Mark Ibanez; daughter-in-law Andrea Bakken; three grandchildren, and two sisters. He will be greatly missed.
      A memorial Service was held at 1:00pm, June 8 at Treadway & Wigger Funeral Chapel in Napa. Pastor Jim Warnock officiated.

Helen Balmos       Helen M. Balmos, San Antonio TX, died April 3, 2016, as reported by her son, Fred. Helen was the widow of BEGOR Plankowner Robert C. Balmos, who passed away Nov. 30, 1998 and is now buried next to hime in Mission Burial Park South, San Antonio. Fred reports, "No one ever had better parents than I did."

      James K. (Jim) Barnett, RD2, 56-57, died Nov. 24, 2014 as reported by his daughter, Teresa Kerner. Jim had a long career as an electrician with Occidental Chemical Corp., then retired to his native home of Paris, TX. He is survived by three daughters, five grandchildren, ten great-grandchildren and a sister. He participated in the dedication of the BEGOR plaque at the Admiral Nimitz Museum.

Ray Bartel       Cecil Ray Bartel wanted to become a naval aviator during WWll, but the conflict ended before he could be trained as a pilot. After the war he became an aeronautical engineer in Texas, where he had a 42 year career designing military aircraft, missiles and rocket systems.
      Mr. Bartel 78, died Aug. 30 of a pulmonary embolism during surgery at a Wichita Falls hospital. Born in Balko, Okla., Mr. Bartel graduated from high school in Perryton, Texas, in 1945.
      Although he didn't become a pilot, he served in the Navy aboard the USS Begor APD-127, including the vessel's assignment during nuclear tests at Bikini Atoll in the Marshall Islands. He watched the atomic bomb go off, said his son, Dr. Danny Bartel of Wichita Falls.
      After serving in the Navy, Mr. Bartel received a degree from the Northrop Institute of Technology in Inglewood, Calif., now a part of California State University, Long Beach. In 1950, he moved to Grand Prairie, where he began a 42-year career as an aerospace engineer with Chance Vought, which later was known as LTV Corp.
      He designed Regulus, the first nuclear missile for submarines. He was also part of the design team of the F-8 Crusader and the A-7 attack bomber, and he was project manager for the Multiple Launch Rocket System.
      For 21 years, Mr. Bartel was a member of the First Baptist Church of Grand Prairie, where he was deacon and primary education coordinator. He later was a founder of the Grand Prairie Bible Church, where he was an elder. He was also a Gideon and served on the board of directors of the Music Evangelism Foundation.
      A community activist, Mr. Bartel was a member of the Grand Prairie Planning and Zoning Commission and past president of the Gopher Quarterback Club for Grand Prairie High School.
      He is survived by his wife, Helen Bartel of Grand Prairie, three sons and a daughter, 11 grandchildren, one great-grandchild and four brothers. Memorials may be made to a scholarship fund, the Cecil Bartel Memorial Foundation at Grand Prairie Bible Church, 1217 S. Carrier Parkway, Grand Prairie, Texas 75051.

Top of page

      EM1 1947-48 passed away in Kerman, CA in September 2001, as reported by his wife Zula May.

      IC3 1953 passed away in March 2005 in Council Bluffs, IW as reported by his daughter.

Benjamin Brooks       LCDR-CO 1945, passed away in 1999 as reported by Roger Turk. He was born in Bayside, NY on 16 June 1918 and was the first USS Begor commanding officer. He retired from the U.S. Naval Reserve, in 1960, as a Captain.

      As reported by his son-in-law, Tom Farley, shipmate Eugene (Gene) F. Brush, F1c (Plank owner) passed away on December 5th 2007. Gene was born in Woodhaven, New York and joined the Navy in 1943 after leaving high school early.
      He is survived by two sons and one daughter; five grandchildren and five great grandchildren. He was a plank owner onboard the USS Begor where he served until November 1945. He proudly proclaimed he was a member of the "black gang". Soon after the war ended, Gene returned home to raise a family and worked in professions that included decommissioning ships at the Brooklyn Navy Yard and as a licensed stationary engineer.


John Carlson       6M2, '51-'55, age 80, of Yuma, Al, passed away May 22, 2013. John was preceded in death by his wife, Lots, who passed away Sept. 25, 2012, as reported in the November 2012 Newsletter. John and Lois were both born in June of 1933, in Sentinel Bluff, ND, and were married in 1955. John was a master mechanic and for many years was a chief engineer for numerous dredging operations throughout the western United States. The couple's many years of travel extended into their retirement, and for some time they worked within the Grand Tetons Parks Dept. before making their permanent home in Yuma. John loved clock building, and numerous lucky Begor shipmates prize one of John's clocks given for their service to the Begor Assn. or received as a reunion door prize. John and Lois were regular Begor Reunion attendees until their deaths. They are survived by three sons and a daughter and spouses, five grandchildren and other family members. John was !?uried with f-1i1itaryHonors on July 21.at the Sentinel Butte -City Cemetery. (Thanks to son Jay Carlson and daughter Susan Renfro for the obituary from which this was excerpted. )

Bud Cherrey       Darrell (Bud) William Cherrey, HM2, 1948-'49, age 88, of Monroe, WI, passed away at home on June 8th, 2012, surrounded by his loving family. He worked at Civilian Conservation Camp prior to enlisting in the United States Navy in June 1943, as a Naval Corpsman. Bud was a WWII and Korean Conflict veteran. During WWII, he provided care to POW' in the Philippines. He deployed with the Marines to Inchon, Korea, providing medical care to Marines on the front lines. He served his country honorable and with distinction for twenty-three years. After retiring from active duty, Bud continued to serve in the Fleet Reserves until his death.
      Bud moved his family to Monroe in 1971. He continued his medical profession as a physician assistant at the Monroe Medical Center until his retirement in 1990. Bud had a strong spirit of volunteerism and donated countless hours as an ambulance driver and Emergency Medical Technician for St. Clare Hospital and the Veterans of Foreign Wars. He married the love of his life, Carol Kruser, on Sept. 6, 1953. He is survived by his wife, seven children, seventeen grandchildren, six great-grandchildren and numerous other relatives. A memorial mass was followed by military honors and a luncheon at the Moose Lodge on June 14, 2012.
      (Reported to John Camp by Mrs. Carol Cherrey. ) (Obituary excerpts from Newcomer Funeral Home.)

Frank Cindrich       Frank J. Cindrich, 55, of Kansas City, Kansas passed away on 15 May 1981. Frank was a Navy veteran of World War II and served onboard USS Begor during 1945-46.
      He was a lifelong resident of Kansas City and had been an auto mechanic instructor at the Kansas City Area Vocational Technical School and a member of the St. John the Baptist Catholic Church. Frank was a past commander of Strawberry Hill VFW Post 7026, and past president of the Slavic-American Club. He owned and operated F & M Auto Service for fifteen years prior to going to work at AVTS in 1965.
      Surviving are his wife, Mary Ellen, three sons, two daughters, three brothers and three sisters. Services were held at St. John the Baptist Catholic Church with burial at Mount Calvary.

Ray Combs       Raymond C. Combs, 68, of Mineralwells, WV, died Dec 27, 2001, at Camden-Clark Memorial Hospital in Parkersburg, WV.
      He was born April 30, 1933 in Parkersburg, a son of the late Daniel Floyd. and Louisa Raines Combs. He graduated from Parkersburg High School with the class of 1951. He entered the U.S. Navy in 1951 and following boot camp, served on the USS Begor APD-127. Raymond retired as a Chief Petty Officer (SKC) after 20 years of service.
      During his Naval career he was awarded the Presidential Unit Citation, Navy Unit Commendation, Armed Forces Expeditionary Medal, Vietnam Service Medal, Vietnam Campaign Medal, National Defense Service Medal and Good Conduct Award.
      Following his service to this country, he worked for the Walker-Parkersburg, O, Ames Co., and Environmental Research and Technology of Concord, Md. Raymond was a member of the Fraternal Order of Eagles, American Legion, Fleet Reserve Assn., a Life Member of the Disabled American Veterans, and Veterans of Foreign Wars.
      He is survived by two sons and two daughters, 10 grandchildren, one sister and one brother.
      Chief Combs was buried in Mt. Pleasant Cemetery with full military rites by the American Legion Post 15 of Parkersburg.

Del Cory       Delbert J. Cory - A resident of Oak Park Heights, Minnesota, Del passed away September 11, 2005. Born in Newcastle, Indiana, he was 71 when he died. In 1958 and 1959, Del served aboard USS Begor (APD-127) as a lieutenant (junior grade). A memorial service was conducted at the Fort Snelling Historic Memorial Chapel in Minneapolis on September 15. Interment was in the Fort Snelling National Cemetery.

The following obituary appeared in SHIPMATE, the U.S. Naval Academy magazine and was provided by Mim Cory, Del's wife:

      Delbert Jason Cory of Oak Park Heights, MN, died on 11 September 2005 of complications of diabetes. He was 71 years old.
      Del was born on 7 January 1934 in Newcastle, IN. He graduated from South Bend Central High School in 1951 and entered Purdue University. After a year at Purdue, he was appointed to the Naval Academy. He started in 11th Company and transferred to Fifth Company in his Second Class Year. While at the Academy, he was in the fencing club and played on the battalion football team.
      Upon graduation with the Class of 1956, he reported to USS Algol (AKA-54) in San Diego. He subsequently served in USS Begor (APD-127) and Bon Homme Richard (CVA-31). He resigned his commission in June 1960 and enrolled in Oberlin Graduate School of Theology. While in Seminary, he served as a chaplain in the Naval Reserve. Upon graduation, in June 1964, he reentered on active duty in the Chaplain Corps, serving at NAS Memphis; First Battalion/First Marines in Da Nang, Vietnam; Great Lakes Naval Training Station; ComPhibRon FOUR in Norfolk; and Parris Island Marine Recruit Depot, SC.
      Del was awarded the Navy Commendation Medal for meritorious service while serving as battalion chaplain, displaying exceptional initiative and devotion to duty. He spent the majority of his time in Vietnam in the field, with forward platoons, moving from unit to unit, through areas in which the Viet Cong were known to be active. He willingly shared the hazards and discomforts of the front line Marines.
      In June 1970, Del again left active duty, moved to Minnesota, and was employed as a labor investigator for the State Department of Labor and Industry. He retired in January 1999.
      Del is survived by his wife, Miriam; son, Stephen; daughters, Nadine, Cathy and Karen; three grandchildren; and two great-grandchildren. He is also survived by his mother, Ruth Kidder, one brother and three sisters.
      A funeral service was held on Thursday, 15 September 2005, at Fort Snelling Historic Memorial Chapel in Minneapolis, MN, followed by interment at Fort Snelling National Cemetery with full military honors.

Top of page


      EN2 1951-55 passed away in Canyon Country, CA on April 23, 2004 as reported by his wife, Patricia

      BT3, 1952-55 Passed away in September 2003 as reported by his brother and shipmate Donald Dart.

      MM1, 1952-55, passed away in Abilene, TX on September 30, 2000 as reported by his wife Helen.

      Jesse W. (Dave) Davis, Jr., of Havana FL, BT1, 52-55, died 8/1/2015 as reported by his daughter-in-law, Tonya Davis. Dave was a Master Electrician and a church Deacon. He is survived byhis wife, Doroty, 3 sons and 2 daughter, 6 grandchildren and 9 great-grandchildren.

      Shipmate and Association Secretary, Bob Sloan, was called by shipmate George Schaidt reporting the death on 7/20/13 of shipmate Robert D. Davis, FN, '46-'50 of Milford, UT. It is interesting that George and Bob served together on the BEGOR, they lived across the street from each other, they both had twins and they were hunting buddies.

      QM1, 1944-45.
      When U.S. specialty steelmakers needed to get their point across to the government and the media, they turned to Bert Delano for nearly 30 years. "He was always ahead of the curve. He anticipated the questions. He knew the answers, said Armco Chairman James F. Will. No matter what the problem was, Bert was always the guy who said, 'Never give up. Never give up.' "
      Hubert W. "Bert" Delano died on September 12, 1999 in Boston after suffering a series of strokes while he was on vacation in Nantucket. He was 78. He is survived by his Wife, June, four Sons and a Daughter.
      Bert was active in local and church affairs. He donated a children's reading room to Mt.Lebanon Library in honor of his wife, an educator and early childhood specialist.
      He was a plank-owner on board the USS Begor APD-127 in 1944, serving as a Quartermaster First Class.

      ENS, 1945, passed away in Spokane, WA as reported by shipmate Clifford Lewis.

      Shipmate Richard "Dick" H. Dimse, LTJG (1956-58) former Begor Operations Officer passed away on 22 July 2003 in Apple Valley, California.
      As reported by the U.S. Naval Academy on their website - "Dick was born in Vancouver, Washington, lived for several years in California and then up state New York. He entered the U. S. Naval Academy with a Fleet appointment after attending Electronics Technician school. Following his graduation from the Naval Academy he served on amphibious ships including the USS Begor (APD-127) and the USS Boston (CAG-1). Dick passed away after a brief illness on July 22, 2003 in Apple Valley, California where he had lived in retirement for the past several years."

Dave Downs       Our shipmate, David A. Downs, EM1 (1953-57) passed away December 23, 2008 following a long battle with cancer. He was preceded in death by his wife Delores in July 1993. Soon after her death, Dave moved from Omaha, Nebraska to sunny Arizona where he could pursue his love of golf. In addition to golf, Dave enjoyed dancing and playing cards. As told by his daughter, Laurie, "[Dave] was a very loving Father to me and my two brothers and a most loving husband to our Mother".
      Dave always looked forward to the USS Begor annual reunions. In addition to his intellectual contributions, he contributed financially in support of USS Begor (APD-127) Association functions. Dave was a great shipmate and gentleman. Although his health situation prevented him from attending our 2008 reunion in Pensacola, Dave contributed a substantial amount toward our hospitality room expenses.
      Dave was an electrician by trade and prior to his retirement he was head electrician at Ak-Sar-Ben (Nebraska spelled backwards) a large coliseum, ice rink and concert arena in Omaha. He began his trade when he reported onboard Begor as an EMFN in November 1953 and was detached as EM1 in February 1957. His rapid advancement spoke clearly of his talent and dedication to the trade. Dave was a longtime member of I.B.E.W. local 22 in Omaha
      He left behind two sons and a daughter: Dr. David A. Downs, Jr., Dan L. Downs, Laurie M. Downs of Omaha, and life friend Mary Wollen. David donated his body to Arizona State University for science.


      Walter Lyle Eggleston, Sr. passed away May 28, 2009 in Oregon.
      Walter was born in Bismark, North Dakota on June 22, 1932, the third of four children of Aloice and Thelma Eggleston. He joined the navy after turning 18 and served 2 years on the USS Begor. He met and married Jenny Gravely while working as a parking lot attendant for a couple of years after being released from active duty. They had four children. Walter became a Lane County, Oregon Sheriff in the 60's where he worked with his brother Ron Eggleston. After serving 11 years as a sheriff he moved to Alaska where he was a tow truck driver then a correctional officer both in Kenai and Kotzebue. He was a longtime resident of many towns in Alaska where he loved to fish and hunt.
      Preceding him in death were his mother and father, sister, and bothers, daughter Lisa, and nephew PFC Cody Eggleston.      
      He is survived by his daughter Dedi and her husband Steve, their daughter KC and son Jared Owen of Amsterdam; his son Rick and wife Marilyn, their daughter Courtney and sons Travis and Tanner Eggleston of Fairbanks AK; his son Walter, Jr. and wife Vicki and their daughters Amber and McKenzie of La Pine, Oregon.
      Walter was put to rest at Rest-Haven Memorial Park in Eugene, Oregon.

Harold Elson       It was with great sadness - on April 6, 2009 after inquiring about Harold was getting along - the Newsletter Editor learned from his daughter, Tina Agnew, that Harold had passed away on March 30, 2009. He had been recuperating from triple bypass heart surgery and a valve replacement operation at the beginning of January, 2009, but as Tina said, he could not overcome his condition.
      Harold served aboard Begor in 1950-53 as an ET1. He was, to the best of our knowledge, the last remaining "founding father" of the USS Begor Association. He will be missed particularly at our reunions, which he and his wife, Hanano, attended regularly. A very generous donation was made to the USS Begor Memorial fund.
      There has not been an official obituary written at this time, but he is survived by his wife, of Fremont, CA, two daughters and their families. You are urged to go online to http://HaroldWasAlwaysThereForUs.blogspot.com to see photos of him and his family. Be sure to click on the arrow under his baby photo to start the video.


      SO3 1950-51 passed away in November 2002 as reported by shipmate Paul Kelly.


      As reported by his cousin, Ronald Walburn, shipmate Daryl L. Garber, RD3 (1951-55) passed away in Tulsa, Oklahoma in November 2007.

      LCDR-CO 1961-62, passed away in 2003 as reported by his son. He was born on 2 February 1927 in Philadelphia, PA. His active service was from 1944 to 1977, retiring as a Captain. Captain Gurney was the thirteenth USS Begor commanding officer.

Top of page


George Hamilton       LCDR-CO 1952-54, passed away in August 1993, as reported by his son. A 1942 graduate of the U.S. Naval Academy, he was the eighth USS Begor commanding officer. He retired in June 1967 as a Captain, making his home in Hawaii.

Gerald Hammer       Our Newsletter Editor, Bill Meeker, received word of Gerald Hammer's passing from his Daughter, Melodie. His obituary can be seen on the obituary link. Melodie reports that the USS Begor was very important to him. Internment will be held on Aug 11th, 2014 in Denver at Fort Logan.

      As reported recently in a letter from his wife, Louise Hardin, Ben Hardin, BM3, 1945, Begor Plank Owner, passed away January 25, 2006 at the age of 83. The Hardins resided in Inman,SC.

      Jean Harman, wife of shipmate LCDR John Harman, reported his death on 20 May 2008 at his home in Menlo Park, California.
      John Harman was the first XO and the second CO of USS Begor (1945-46).
      Obituary - Commander John Ashmore Harman, USN Ret. passed away on 20 May 2008 at the age of 87. A resident of Menlo Park for 44 years, he was born in Rochester, New York, a graduate of Brown University and member of Phi Delta Theta fraternity. He served as an officer in the U.S. Navy from early 1941 until his retirement in 1964. He served as commanding officer of USS Begor (APD-127) during 1945-46. The majority of his Naval career was as a pilot on anti-submarine aircraft and helicopters. Following his Naval retirement he worked for Southern Pacific Railroad for 20 years.
      He was the quintessential "officer and a gentleman." Respected and admired by all who knew him, and beloved by his family and the multitude of foreign students for whom he was surrogate father during their stay at Stanford.
      He is survived by Jean, his wife of 62 years; his children Sheri Lee, Scott Harman, Marcy Crawford, Stuart Harman, and six grandchildren. There will be no formal service.

      Pat Harper, who had attended one our San Diego reunions with his wife, brought to our attention via email that his father, Dean Harper, MM3, 1945-46 was not on our Deceased Shipmates list. Extracts from Dean Harper's published obituary that Pat provided follows.
      Dean P. Harper died in Eureka, CA on October 21, 1985 at age 58. He was a native of Eau Claire, WI and a resident of Eureka.
      Mr. Harper lived in this area since his retirement in 1970. He served nearly 25 years of active duty in the US Navy and US Air Force, and was a member of the VFW, Post no. 1872 and the Eagles, Aerie No. 130. He is survived by his wife, 3 sons, 3 daughters, 3 brothers, 2 sisters, 13 grandchildren and numberous nieces and nephews.
      His memorial service was held at the Veterans Memorial Building in Eureka on October 27, 1985. A private inurnment was held at Ocean View Cemetary,i Eureka.

      Editor's note: Pat Harper provided a copy of his father's Notice of Separation. It show that Dean joined the Navy in 1944 and served aboard the USS LCI 815, USS Begor (APD-127), and USS PCS 1403. Our Assocation's Historian Emeritus, Gene Combs, notes that Dean served aboard Begor in 1945-46.

      As published in the San Diego Union-Tribune on December 30, 2009, CDR Lyle R. Hays (CO 1948-49), passed away in San Diego on December 5, 2009. CDR Hays served as BegorÂ’s 5th commanding officer.
      CDR Hays retired from the US Navy in 1968 after serving 27 years of active service. He is survived by Dolores, his wife of 68 years, from Rancho Bernardo, one son and a daughter, seven grandchildren and four great grandchildren.

Fred Hill       As reported by his wife, Rita, Fred Warren Hill, OSC (Ret.), passed away on February 18, 2007 at Sharp Hospital in Chula Vista, California, from pulmonary fibrosis.
      Fred was born in Craven County, North Carolina, November 15, 1930. In April 1948 he quit school and enlisted in the U.S. Navy. He did his basic training at the Naval Training Center in San Diego.
      During his Navy Career, when aboard ships, Fred's home port was San Diego, and shore duty was also in San Diego, with two exceptions. He served two years in Hawaii as an instructor, and two years with the Military Assistance Advisory Group (MAAG) at Tsoying Naval Base, Taiwan, Republic of China.
      He served aboard USS Begor (APD-127) 1948-51, USS Henrico (APA-45), USS Duncan (DDR-874), USS Mahan (DLG 10), USS King (DLG-11), USS Piedmont (AD-33), and the Nationalist Chinese Navy Ships DE-21 and PCEC. The US Navy ships he was on were involved in shore bombardment of North Korea, South Korea, and Vietnam.
      Fred, also known as "Smiley," finished his High School education while stationed in San Diego and when transferred to Fleet Reserve after serving 23 years in the Navy. He then attended college and earned a business degree. He began working as a Real Estate Salesman, later became a Real Estate Broker, Property Manager and Certified General Appraiser. In the late 1960s, he and a partner had a contract with the VA, to manage all of San Diego and Imperial Counties VA repossessed properties.

      SM3, 1945 passed away on 17 December 2005 in Indianapolis, Indiana, as reported to shipmate Clifford Lewis, by James' widow, Carolyn.

Victor Hubbard       BM1, '52-'55 (BMC, Ret), age 88, of Tuscaloosa, Alabama, passed away July 15, 2013, as reported by his wife, Elaine. Born in West Frankfort, IL and joining the Navy in 1942, Victor served in WWII, Korea and Vietnam, with 20 years of active duty service, and 10 years in the Navy Reserve. He also retired from the Druid City Regional Hospital in Tuscaloosa with 29 years of service. Having crossed the equator in 1943, he was proud to be a "Trusty Shellback" & always carried the card.

Stu Huntington       Huntington, Stuart, CAPT, USN Ret.: He served aboard Begor as ENS in 1958-59. His assignment with our USS Begor (APD-127) Association was Website Development Project Leader. Stu's published obituary follows:
      Stuart was born on March 8, 1936 in Staten Island, New York and passed away on May 23, 2014 in Murrieta, California, after a three year battle with metastatic prostate cancer. He is survived by his loving wife of 52 years, Paula Huntington; daughter, Meredith Stewart, and her husband, Ian; granddaughter, Samantha; older brother, Bob, and younger brother, Lee.
      Even though he moved many times as part of a military family, Stu considered Spring Valley, New York his childhood home, and graduated from high school there. He was part of the NROTC and received a BA in Government from Columbia College in 1958. He went on to achieve an MS in Computer Systems Management from the Naval Postgraduate School in 1971. Stu served in the US Navy for 26 years and retired as a Captain. His ship deployments included the USS Iowa, USS Begor and USS Jamestown. He was also stationed at Karamursel Air Station in Turkey, Edzell in Scotland, and Misawa AFB in Japan, as well as the Pentagon and the National Security Agency. He went on to work in the private sector for 18 years at General Electric, Martin Marietta and Lockheed Martin, retiring in 2002.
      Over the years, Stu's hobbies included photography, travel, enjoying movies, organizing reunions, collecting coins, drawing and creating web pages. He was a very detail-oriented person and his sense of humor will be greatly missed by his family and friends.
      A graveside service will be held on Tuesday, June 17th @ 11:30 a.m. at Riverside National Cemetery.
      In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Jennifer Smart Foundation in Stu's memory at JenniferSmart.com.

Bob Huston       SN, '52, age 79, of Henderson, NV, passed away on Memorial Day, May 27, 2013, as reported by his wife, Patricia. He had a Military Funeral Service, a Navy bugler played taps, and the folded flag was presented to Patricia, all of which she said would have really made Bob proud. Bob was a latecomer to the Begor Assn., but an enthusiastic member, and this year he had contributed several items of interest to your Newsletter Editor.



      SH2, 1955-56, passed away on March 9, 2010 as reported by his son David. Our David was a member of the USS Begor Championship basketball team. See the basketball team photo on our History page HERE.

      SO3 1952-54, passed away in Glendale, AZ on January 28, 2004 as reported by his wife, Clara.

Malcolm Johnson       Malcolm N. Johnson, Jr, BT1 61-62, BTCM (Ret), of Coookeville, TN died on Feb. 27, 2016, as reported by his wife, Beverly. Malcolm had an outstanding 20 year career in the US Navy, ranging from Fireman Apprentice on his first ship, USS Jason (ARH-1), to Master Chief Boilerman aboard USS Prarie, (AD15), and Recruiter-in-Charge duties at recruiting station in east TN. He was awarded the Navy Commendation Medal by Commander US Pacific Fleet for services rendered from 1970-1972.

Walter Johnson       From the Memphis, Tennessee The Commercial Appeal:
WALTER FAY JOHNSON, 79, passed away at his home in Millington, Saturday, October 24, 2009. Formerly of Tyronza, AR, he is a retired Boatswain’s Mate Petty Officer First Class, with 22 years of service in the Navy, retired owner of Jetway Cleaners, and retired businessman. His wife, Pham Hue Johnson; three daughters, Belinda Eve Henry and her husband, Adam, Patricia Faye Johnson, and Lori Diane Kearney and her husband, Clay; one sister, Shirley Rose Henry, and one grandson, Alexander D. Henry, survive him. Funeral services were held on October 31 at the Millington Civic Center. Burial followed the services at Northridge Woodhaven Cemetery.
      His daughter, Belinda Henry, who attended one reunion with him in San Diego in '93, reported his death to our website. Walter served aboard Begor as BM3, 1950-52 & 1957-59, and was Past Vice President of our association. He just turned 79 on 10/19/2009 and passed away at home surrounded by friends and loved ones after battling lung cancer for almost two years.

Richard Jones       E-Div" 1949-'50, age 85, of Greeley, CO, passed away on June 14, 2013, as reported by his wife of 62 years, Darlene. Employed by Northrop Corp., in Hawthorne, CA, from 1952-83/ he retired as an Executive of Manufacturing Engineering Operations with many accolades. Moving to Greeley, he established a Manufacturing Engineering consulting business, and became active in civic work. In his retirement, he wrote two books. He was a member of DAV and VFW.


      Edward J. Kelly of Stratford, CT 06497, passed away 9/25/06 after a long battle with Lou Gehrig's disease. Ed was an EM1 aboard Begor from 1951-1955. The Begor was the only ship he served on in the Navy.
      This information was provided by Ed's brother and Begor Assn. member, Richard T. Kelly, IC2 '50-'51, also of Stratford.

      CDR Klaus' son David reported that CDR Klaus passed away on September 22, 2001 at his home in Pompano Beach, FL. He was a USS Begor plank owner. See ENS Klaus in a picture of the plank owners on our Photo Gallery page.

Frank Kleber       USS Begor Shipmates, it saddens us to report the death of one of our most respected and admired commanding officers. At 1300 PST Tuesday, 22 February 2011, CDR Francis (Frank) Thomas Kleber, USN (ret) passed away in Chula Vista, California.
      Commander Kleber assumed command of the Gray Ghost on Friday 23 August 1958, while Begor was in the midst of qualification evaluations under the watchful eyes of the Fleet Training Center in San Diego. The following Monday, Begor got underway to demonstrate her ability to tow a larger ship. Things went wrong during that operation and Frank describes in Begor sea story # 18, details of the towing cable wrapping around the port screw. What a beginning for FrankÂ’s tour as commanding officer! Frank had a robust sense of humor, including the ability to laugh at his own mistakes and about the missteps bound to happen in complex military operations. He documented several other sea stories on our website, www.ussbegor.org .
      A 1944 graduate of the U.S. Naval Academy, he began is naval career on the USS West Virginia (BB-48), a survivor of the December 7th Japanese attack on Battleship Row in Pearl Harbor. He participated in 5 major amphibious assaults and one surface sea battle in the Philippines, Iwo Jima and Okinawa while onboard the “WeeVee.” He would subsequently command two ships, a division of four ships and a squadron of eight ships.
      During 1955-56 Frank served as XO of the USS Arnold J. Isbell (DD-869). The commanding officer at the time was Elmo “Bud” Zumwalt, the future Chief of Naval Operations. It was clear from Navy conversations with Frank throughout his life that Admiral ZÂ’s mentorship was a key factor in his own pride in and dedication to the Sea Service. Retiring from the Navy in late 1960Â’s Frank worked in various engineering positions in the nuclear and aerospace industry and ultimately worked at Fermi Labs in Chicago, site of the worldÂ’s largest particle-accelerator. He retired again in 1982 and returned to San Diego area. Frank and his wife Evelyn were active for several years in the USS Begor (APD-127) Association, attending many of the annual reunions.
      A memorial service will be held at Christ Church Unity, 3770 Altadena Drive, San Diego, California at 1000 Wednesday 16 March, followed by a military burial at Fort Rosecrans National Cemetery on Point Loma at 1500. Commander Kleber is survived by his widow Evelyn, four Sons and their families.

      LCDR-CO 1957-58, passed away in 2002 as reported by his widow, Pamela. He was the eleventh USS Begor commanding officer.

      LCDR-CO 1951-52, passed away in December 1980 in Sheboygan, WI. He was a graduate of the U.S. Naval Academy, class of 1939, and was the seventh USS Begor commanding officer. He retired from the U.S. Navy, in 1967, as a Captain.


      Eugene's son, Curt Lang, reported the following to our Newsletter Editor, Bill Meeker:
      I recently received the USS Begor Newsletter sent to my father, Eugene R. Lang. Unfortunately we lost dad on June 4, 2013. One of his most exciting, recent memories was the reunion he and his wife Deloris attended of the USS Begor. He was so proud of the work ALL of his fellow service men did while serving our great country.

      Wife of LTJG Robert Lawrence, Begor Operations Officer 1958-59, passed away in Placerville, CA on August 28, 1998 as reported by her husband.

      This report was received from Earl Logan's son, Brian:
      "I was looking up my fathers ship during WWII and found this site. He passed in 1992. He used to brag about the Begor being the first ship in Tokyo Bay doing mine sweeping duty for the surrender of Japan. He was the chief engineer at the time."

      Avery James (Jim) Lord, Jr., SO2, 50-52, of Summerville, SC, died Friday, Dec. 17, 2010, at Summerville Medical Center. Mr. Lord was a retired Sr. Chief Petty Officer in the US Navy serving in Korea. He was a crew member of the nuclear submarine USS John C. Calhoun (SSBM-630), the USS Begor, and the USS Darter (SS-576). While serving in the Navy, Jim was a Cryptologist and a Sonar Tech. He was a retired Fire Chief with the Summerville Fire Department and had the honor of having Fire Station #4 in Summerville named after him. He attended Summerville Baptist Church. Mr. Lord was a member of the Antique Auto Club of America and the Corvette Club. He served in the Masons and the Lion's Club. He was a life member of US Submarine Veterans, Inc. Jim also served as a Notary Public. He was a member of the SC Fire Chief's Association, Tri-County Fire Chief's Association, and the SC Firefighter's Association. Mr. Lord proudly served his country, the Town of Summerville, and his family.

LOONEY, JOHN, BM2, 52-53
      As reported by his widow, Billie, shipmate John Looney, BM2 (1952-53) passed away in Irving, Texas on 3 May 2009. John was received onboard 11-21-52 from USS TELFAIR (APA-210) and transferred to USS LST-1148 on 9 April 1953.

Norma Lowke       Associate Member Norma Ruth Lowke, Plano, TX passed away Nov. 18, 2015 as reported by her husband, Walter. She had 2 sons and 2 grandsons. She was the sister of Begor shipmate Lavern Winter, S1C, 45-46. She graduated from Emporia State University, and was employed by JC Penny in Frisco, KS. She had attended several Begor reunions. Walter says that Lavern still lives on the family farm in Virgil, KS and seems to be in good health.

Top of page


      LCDR-CO 1946-47, passed away in July 1999 as reported by his daughter-in-law Cindy Margetts. He was the third USS Begor commanding officer, and retired from the U.S. Navy as a Commander.

George Masterson Oct 12 1920 - Sept 1 2005
      George E. Masterson, Sr., a World War II Navy veteran and barbershop quartet singer, died Sept 1 in his New Port Richey, Florida home after a brief illness. He was 84.
      Born in Buffalo, he graduated from South Park High School.
      During World War ll, he was a signalman on the USS Begor, the first vessel to enter Tokyo Bay in August 1945, clearing the way for the signing of the treaty there to end the war, according to the USS Begor's historical web site and family members.
      Mr. Masterson was a 40-year employee of Joseph Davis & Co., Buffalo, and a member of Steamfitters Local 395.
      He enjoyed music and sang with a barbershop group known as the Buffalo Bills and later with Friends of Harmony. He also sang with a folk group and choir at St. Martin Catholic Church in Buffalo.
      In 1990, Mr. Masterson moved to Florida. He enjoyed traveling and playing pool.
      His wife of 50 years, Alice Roach Masterson, died in 1996.
      Survivors include his second wife, the former Alba Burlandi; four daughters, Mary O'Connor, Joan Bausch and Sheila Scanlon, all of West Seneca, and Margaret Monheim of Buffalo; three sons, James of Pleasanton, Calif., Michael of Gales Ferry, Conn., and William of Trumansburg; a sister, Ann Diggins of West Seneca; a brother, Matthew of Florida; 30 grandchildren; and five great-grandchildren.
      A Mass of Christian Burial was offered in St. Martin Church. Prayers were said in Curtin Funeral Home, West Seneca. Burial was in Mount Carmel Cemetery, Silver Creek.

      Shipmate William F. McBride, RM2 (1945-46) passed away on 14 January 2006, in Lexington, MA as reported by his widow.

      Ship's Historian, Gene Combs, has been informed by Don Pierce, former member of UDT-3, of the death of Honorary Shipmate and former UDT-21 member, Barry G. McCabe, LTJG, USNR. Barry provided us with information and photos of the destruction of Japanese military equipment around Tokyo Bay in August and September 1945, while embarked on USS Begor. This information is contained in Sea Story # 26.
      "Barry G. McCabe, 83, of Westport, CN passed away on 14 November. Barry was born in Detroit, Michigan and was a resident of Westport for the past forty-three years. As a member of UDT-21, embarked on USS Begor (APD-127), he participated in the destruction of Japanese war equipment around the Tokyo Bay area in August and September 1945.
      "A graduate of the University of Michigan, an amateur photographer, and a member of the Navy League, Barry was actively involved in a local program physically testing, mentoring and training young men who want to be Navy SEALs. In 2005, Mr. McCabe was honored to serve as the Grand Marshall of the Westport Memorial Day Parade.
      "Surviving are his widow, Kathryn, two daughters and one son. Barry's family and many friends were invited to celebrate his life on Monday November 19th at the Longshore Country Club. The event ended with military honors and celebratory remarks at 6PM."

Vincent McEntee       Vincent Edward McEntee - A 35-year resident of Inglewood, California, Vincent passed away March 2, 2005. Born in Portland, Oregon, he was 79 when he died. He served in the U.S. Navy during WWll and the Korean War. During the Korean War, Vincent served on the USS Begor (APD-127) as a BTG1 and participated in operations at Hungnam during December 1950.
      After leaving the Navy he was employed with California Sports Inc. and the Los Angeles Lakers organization. He is survived by his wife, Eleuteria, two daughters, three sisters and three brothers. Services will be Sunday, March 6 at 1:00pm with a gathering of friends and family until 8:00pm at McCormick Inglewood Mortuary. Rosary will be Sunday March 6 at 7:00pm.
      A funeral Mass was held Monday March 7 at 10:00am at Visitation Catholic Church in Westchester. Vincent was buried at Willamette National Cemetery, Portland, Oregon on Wednesday March 9 .

      EM3, 49-51. Richard passed away in Bellevue, WA on April 30, 2015 at age 87 from cancer. His death was reported by his oldest son Chuck. He is preceded in death by his wife Betty, son David and daughter, Carol. See his obituary at the Cascade Memorial website.

      CAPT, USN, RET former Begor XO 1946-48 passed away in June 2002 as reported by shipmate CDR Lyle Hayes.

      Seaman 1951-52, passed away in Carson City, NV on January 13, 1997, as reported by shipmate Roger Turk.

Top of page

      EMFN 1949-50 passed away in 2002 as reported by his wife, Billie Ruth.

      Samuel L. Miller, MMC USNR (Ret), 1944-'45, Begor Plank Owner, passed away on 9/13/2006 after several years illness. Sam's wife, Doris, recently reported this, and you may recall her letter to the Begor Assn., written before Sam's death, printed in the January 2007 Newsletter, expressing regrets at not being able to attend the Baltimore Reunion because of Sam's failing health. Sam retired from his civilian career with the US Postal Service as Superintendent of Maintenance for the USPS District covering Georgia and parts of SC and FL. Doris lives at their home of 52 years in Atlanta, GA. Sam and Doris had 3 children, seven grandchildren, and one great-granddaughter.

MITCHELL, LEO Leo Mitchell
      Leo Mitchell, 72, Elk River, Idaho, the light of our life. Leo W. Mitchell joined our Lord in Heaven on Dec. 16, 2005. Leo was and is our beloved husband, father, brother, uncle, grandfather, great-grandfather and friend. Leo was born on July 24, 1933, to Alvin and Ethel Waker Mitchell in Winona, Idaho.
      He married Mardell Taff on June 19, 1955 in Grangeville. Leo and Mardell had five children. They were divorced in 1976. In 1978, on July 21, he married the love of his life, Beverly, in Elk River. At this time he was blessed with four more children. He was also blessed with having two surviving sisters, 22 grandchildren and two great-grandchildren. He was preceded in death by his parents, four brothers and one sister.
      Leo served in the Navy from 1952 to 1957, [1953-56 in the USS Begor APD-127], and in the National Guard from 1957 to 1959. He was a life member of the American Legion Post in Grangeville and served on the Elk River School Board, Elk River City Council, and was a Deacon in the Elk River Community Church. He also served as a Clearwater Highway District Commissioner.
      Memorial services were held at the Elk River Community Church.
      [Beverly Mitchell]

      SO2, 1945-49, passed away in March 2003 as reported by his wife Patricia.

Zavin Mukhalian       Surrounded by family, Alton Boyd Morgan, IC2, '56-'59, 75, of Shiner, Texas, passed away on May 30 2011. Boyd was born in Center, and attended several schools since his father worked for the Southern PaCific Railroad. This interaction helped hone his gregarious and friendly personality. He attended Byrd High School in Shreveport, LA for three years and was active on the track team and the a capella choir. Boyd graduated in 1955 from New Caney High School, where he played football, ran track, and was selected as the "Most Popular Boy" by his classmates.
      Shortly after graduationr Boyd enlisted in the United States Navy. He traveled the world and was given an excellent education in electrical work and instrumentation. He would take these skills and turn them into a long and rewarding career in the field of instrumentation in industrial distribution. Boyd worked for several years at Ethyl Corporation on the Houston Ship Canal. He earned an associate's degree at San Jacinto College. Boyd and Joan Svoboda were married June 8, 1962, and were blessed with a son, Bruce, and two daughters, Jill and Cindy, and seven grandchildren, who survive him.
      Boyd was wheel chair bound in his later life. He wanted to come to the USS Begor Plaque dedication at the Nimitz Museum in Fredericksburq, TX, 6/27/2009, and his friend and shipmate Paul Beard from Payson, AZ was looking forward to their reunion there. However, Joan, who did the driving, was having eyesight trouble when the date came up, and she and Boyd could not make the trip.
      (Reported to Bill Meeker by Joan Morgan 9/25/2012)

Zavin Mukhalian       LCDR-CO 1954-56, passed away in February 1992 as reported by his family. He was born on 18 February 1919 in Bridgewater MA. He served in the Navy from 1942-1969 and was the ninth USS Begor commanding officer.

      Syble D. Murray, wife of shipmate George Murray (SK2 1945-49), passed away in Dallas, Texas on December 23, 2007. Survivors, in addition to her husband of 58 years, were a daughter and two sons, one sister and one brother, 5 grandchildren and 3 great-grandchildren. Syble was buried in Dallas-Fort Worth National Cemetery following funeral services on 27 December.


George Murray       Shipmate Murray's son, Richard, and son-in-law, Paul Barton, reported the death of shipmate George Murray, SK2, 45-4. They said "He proudly served his country in the US Navy from 1945 – 1949 on the USS Begor. He was buried at the National Cemetery at DFW with one of his prized possessionsÂ….his USS Begor hat."

Larry Myers       Larry Myers, RM3, 1952-54, passed away at St. Joseph Hospital in Orange, Ca. He was born 11-06-33 and passed on 2-11-12. He is survived by his wife Harriet, his daughter Julie Horn of Santa Ana, Ca. and his Sister Sandra Meyer of Mc Clure, Ohio. He was preceded in death by his brother Jack Myers also a Navy Man. Larry has three Grand Children and four Great Grand Children.
      The Funeral Service was held on 2-21-12 at the Saddleback Chapel in Santa Ana and the Committal Service at the El Toro Memorial Park in Lake Forest Ca. with full Military Honors. A reception was held at the Tustin Ranch Golf Club in Tustin Ca. in celebration of his life.
      (Reported to Bill Meeker by Larry's wife Harriet.)

Top of page


      As reported by his son, John, shipmate Ernie B. Nash, S1c, 1945, a plankowner, passed away in Concord, North Carolina in September 2005.

      The death of shipmate Richard Neblette on June 16, 2013 was reported by his grand daughter, Gabrielle McComas. She said "I was always fascinated by my grandfathers naval career and loved hearing all the stories that he had to tell us about. I was very moved by him and everything that he did in his life. He was a huge source of inspiration for me and still continues to be even in his absence."

      Wife of LT. Ken Nelson, Begor Operations Officer 1950-52 passed away in Belfair, WA on February 10, 2003 as reported by her husband.



      DKSN 1951-55 passed away at his home in Salisbury, NC on July 23, 2003 as reported by his wife, Connie

      John C. "Jack" Parling age 79 of Ithaca, Michigan died Sunday, October 22, 2006 at his home.
      Funeral Services were conducted Wednesday October 25, 2006 , at Smith Funeral Homes, Ithaca Chapel.
      Jack was born in Alma, Michigan on March 7, 1927, the son of Verne & Cordie Parling. He graduated from Ithaca High School with the class of 1944. On May 29, 1948 he married Evelyn May Kirby. He served his country in the U.S. Navy during WWII serving on the USS Begor (APD-127) and was a life member of the Ithaca VFW Post. He was a life member of the Alma Elks #1400 and was a past exultant ruler.
      Jack had worked as a car salesman for Davis Ford for 40 years. He and his wife also farmed for the past 30 years. He was a private pilot and enjoyed flying. He also liked to hunt and fish.

      Wife of CDR Roderick Perry Begor XO 1950-51 passed away in San Diego, CA on September 4, 2001 as reported by her husband.

Rod Perry       Shipmate Joe Roderick Perry, LT (Ret. CDR) XO 1950-51 passed away on 10 June 2009. Commander Perry was living in an assisted living facility in Chula Vista, California.
      A military funeral was held at Fort Rosecrans National Cemetery on Wednesday 17 June. Roderick leaves two daughters, five grandsons and six great grandchildren. He was predeceased by his wife of 61 years, El Mina, in 2001. Roderick would have celebrated his 93rd birthday on July 3
      He enlisted in the Navy in 1933 and served 34 years on active duty. He was a great shipmate and held the respect of fellow officers and enlisted sailors alike.

Gerald Post       Gerald Post of Owatonna, MN, died December 10, 2014. Gerald was born July 16, 1933 in Ocheydan, IA the son of Sam and Gertrde Post, He grew up on the family farm and graduated from high school in Harris, IA. Gerald served in the U.S.Navy from 1953 to 1957 aboard the USS Navarro (APA-215) and the USS Begor (APD-127). While aboard ship he worked in the boiler/mechanic room,learning his trade as a boiler engineer.
      On December 7, 1958, Gerald was united in marriage to Lorraine Lemke in Rushmore, MN. They were mariied for 36 years before Lorraine died in 1994. Throughout the years, Gerald worked as a boiler operator at Worthington Power Plant, Armour and Company, and Owatonna Canning Company retiring in 1988.



Joe Rael       Joe S. Rael, DC3, 1955, died March 25, 2016, in Trinidad, CO, as reported by shipmate Art Sanchez, MM3, 56-59. Joe served aboard BEGOR with his brother, Antonio, and his wife's cousin, Arthur Sanchez. He worked in the Allen and Golden Eagle mines nearby Trinidad and was a UMWA union official for many years, filling the Secretary and Safety Coordinator positions. He was an avid hunter and outdoorsman. On November 11, 1987, at the Governor's Mansion in Denver, Joe was awarded the prestigious Casimero Barela Award as "the citizen of America who has given exemplary service to the people of Colorado and to the Hispanic-American Community." Joe is survived gy his wife, Josephine, a dougher, two sons, a brother and sister and numerous grandchildren and great-grandchildren.

Jim Ralston       Dr. James S. Ralston, LTJG 1953-'56, CDR, USNR(R), of Kansas City, KS, passed away Nov. 7, 2012, as reported to Gene Combs by his widow, Susan
      Jim served in the Navy from 1952, following his graduation from U of Kansas with a Bachelor degree in Music, until 1956, and Susan reports he was very proud to have served on USS Begor. He remained in the Navy Reserve until retirement in 1974. He earned a Master's Degree in 1958 and a Ph.D in 1973, both in Music Education and both from the University of Kansas. He later joined the faculty of KU, became a full professor in 1978 and retired in 1994. His list of accomplishments during his tenure there is quite long, and in 1997, Jim was inducted into the Kansas Music Education Hall of Fame. He was the song leader of the Monday Rotary Club for forty-six years. Jim's extensive obituary can be seen here.
      Jim formed a vocal quartet, the Clefdwellers, on the Begor. Read all about this group on the Sea Stories Page, Sea Story 33.

      Samuel J. "Sam" Rhodes , Jr, SN1c, '46-'48, age 85, of Abbeville, GA, passed away March 12, 2013, as reported by his grandson, Richard Rhodes.
      "My grandfather has passed away recently (March) I tracked your newsletter down a year or so ago and paid for it for him. He sure did like getting this newsletter and always brought it to me to read when he was done, it was always tattered and torn from him reading it so much.
      He had a very sudden and unexpected death, he got to feeling bad for 2 days and we finally talked him into going to the Dr. where they thought it was his heart and sent him to a hospital with cardiac services and they later found that he had an esophageal tear that had been pooling blood in his chest cavity, he had massive infection throughout and there was little hope but he gave it a good fight."

      Ed Rosendahl Shipmate Bob Lawrence reports the passing of the Begor's 1958-59 Executive Office, LT Ed Rosendahl, on April 1, 2017. He was preceded in death four weeks earlier by his beloved wife Shirley. He had been in a nursing home in Santa Rosa, CA for several years due to a disabling stroke. Bob Lawrence, who lives about 2.5 hours away, visited Ed about once every 6 weeks or so and reports that except for the last couple of months he had the same vigourous and entertaining personality that those of us who were aboard with him remember. That is, he was full of sea stories.
      Ed grew up in North Dakota and told stories of hunting in his youth. He continued hunting all his life including being featured on the cover of the November/December 1988 issue of The Oregon Hunter. In 1945 he volunteered as a Naval Aviation Cadet and on active duty was experienced as a pilot of the F4U Corsair gull wing among others. Due to a bail out accident he was declared ineligble for further flying duties and came to the surface Navy. After the Begor he had a seried of active duty assignments including skipper of the USS Pluck (MSO-464), Commodore of a minsweeper squadron and various other sea and shore duty assignments.
      The top photo show Ed with Lieutenant's shoulder boards, familiar to us aboard the Begor in 58-59. The bottom has him in Dinner Dress Blues with Shirley at his side. Ed retired as Commander, USN.

      As reported by his niece, Patricia DeLong, shipmate Roderick A. Ross, MMC, 1945-47, passed away in March 2006 (on his 84th birthday). Patricia reported that shipmate Ross shared fond memories of his Begor days and enjoyed reading the USS Begor Association Newsletter.


      George Daulton Schaidt, 92, passed away on July 21, 2018 in Milford, Utah.
      George entered the Navy at the age of 17. He served on the USS North Carolina during WWII, where he served as a radioman, and on the USS Begor during the Korean conflict.
      He married Mary Ellen Steele in Pateros, WA on July 15, 1950. After leaving the military, he and his wife settled in Los Angeles, CA, where together they raised four daughters. His family was very important to him. George worked for the Union Pacific Railroad as a brakeman/conductor. In 1970 he transferred to Milford, UT, where he retired from the UPRR in May 1989.
      George belonged to the Masonic Lodge #38 in Caliente, NV. He loved to hunt, fish and anything that involved the outdoors. George loved people, and he never met a stranger. He will be greatly missed.

      Richard (Dick) H. Schroeder, passed away at his home in Sheboygan, Wisconsin on Thursday morning, December 13, 2007, as reported by his wife, Ruth. Dick was a veteran of eight years in the Navy, having served in USS Skagit and USS Ely in addition to his USS Begor service. He was married to Ruth Blok on Nov. 7, 1959 and they raised their children in the family homestead, once owned by Dick's grandfather. He enjoyed golfing, fishing and snowmobiling with family and friends and he will always be remembered for his happy nature, practical jokes, and unusual Christmas gifts.

      Chief Commissaryman 1950-53, passed away on November 20, 1991 as reported by shipmate Harold Elson

Raoul Sere'       Shipmate Raoul Pierre Seré passed away on November 26, 2010. Raoul served in the USS Begor as Supply Officer during 1952-53. He was 83 years of age. He was buried at Lake Lawn Metarie Cemetery in New Orleans on Monday 29 November.
      He is survived by his widow, Miriam Jane; daughters Jeannine, Andree, Suzanne and Renee and step son John de Ben. Raoul had 13 grandchildren.
      He was a graduate of St. Aloysius High School, Tulane University and Loyola Law School. He was an attorney for 50 years and publisher of Deedfax for 51 years. Raoul was active in the USS Begor (APD-127) Association for many years and had served as Secretary and Newsletter Editor.

Bud Sigmon       Coxswain 1945, passed away on November 3, 2005 in Lincolnton, NC, as reported to shipmate "Archie" Archer, by Bud's widow, Mary Edith. Bud was a Begor Plank-owner having joined the original crew in Bay City, Michigan in 1944. Shipmate Sigmon was interred in Forest Lawn Cemetery in Lincolnton following a service at the Warlick Funeral Home Chapel on Saturday November 5, 2005. He was 79.

Larry Smith       Lawrence W. Smith (Larry), MM2 55-59, died July 28, 2015 in Poway, CA as report by his daughter Susan Johnson. He is survived by 2 children, 3 grandchildren and 7 great-grandchildren.

      MM2 1945-46, passed away in Cincinnati, Ohio on April 3, 2005, as reported by his widow, Rita.

      John Spence, Master Chief Gunner's Mate, age 95, of Bend Oregon, on Nov. 10, 2013. Although not a USS Begor shipmate, his obituary is noted because of a Begor Association Newsletter article about UDT. John was the first member recruited and assigned as an underwater combat swimmer at the onset of WWII. His exploits are included in the book "The First Frogman", which mistakenly credited another early Frogman, actually an underwater swimming student of Spence, with that distinction. Google on "John Spence, UDT, obituary." You will find lots of material and photos of him. The Navy kept his exploits classified until the late 1980's.

Laurence Stephens       Laurence "Larry" Stephens was born February 10, 1939, in Charleston, to Delbert R. and Angela R. Stephens. A graduate of Nitro High School, he furthered his education at Duke University in North Carolina on a Naval scholarship. In May of 1960 he received his degree in mechanical engineering and was commissioned an ensign in the United States Navy. In 1963, following his Naval service, he was employed by E.I. DuPont as a plant engineer. Larry retired in 1997 as a plant environmental specialist in Nederland, Texas, with 38 years of service.

Ed Stoehr       Ed's stepson, William Graser, reports that Ed, who died on 3/22/17, was a proud WW2 veteran and wore his USS Begor cap often.

Walt Swain       Walton E. "Walt" Swain, BM2, Plank Owner, '45-'46, age 89, died on Sept 22, 2013, in Washington, NC, as reported by his wife of 63 years, Matilda (Tillie). Walt was born and lived nearly all of his life in Washington County, NC. He was the last Postmaster appomted by Walter B. Jones, and later became president of the North Carolina Chapter of the National Association of Postmasters (NAPUS). He was a 62 year member of American Legion Post 0015, member of VFW Post 6088, Washington Lions Club, First Christian Church, and Trinity Sunday School Class. Survivors in addition to Tillie are a son, Richard, and wife Anita, three brothers and their wives, and numerous other relatives.

Top of page


      As reported by his widow, Elizabeth, shipmate Jack W. Townsley, Motor Mach., 1949-50, passed away in Abilene, Texas on December 26, 2005.

      Paul Edward Tucker, SO1 (1953-56) passed away Thursday, April 16, 2009 at Franciscan Villa in Broken Arrow, Oklahoma. Paul was born January 12, 1934 in Albany, Illinois, the son of Carl and Kathryn (Miller) Tucker. He was 75 years of age.
      After serving in the United States Navy during the Korean War, Paul graduated from St. Mary's University in San Antonio, Texas where he met and married Joy Ludy in 1973. Paul loved to travel, taking 2 trips around the world. After moving from San Antonio to Peru, South America, Paul and Joy eventually settled in Broken Arrow, Oklahoma where he later retired from OXY Petroleum as a geophysicist.
      After retiring, Paul joined the staff at the Broken Arrow Senior Center where he worked in the office from 1993 to 2004 and was very active with the Senior Center. He enjoyed traveling and motorcycles.
      He is survived by daughters, Kirstin Hendrick and Amy Willey, both of Broken Arrow, OK; grandchildren, Tarah Bradbury, Sydney Hendrick, Michael Powell, Taylor Willey, Devon Willey and Ashlynn Willey; sisters Judy Froke and Kristin Cox, and one brother, Lynn Tucker.
      Graveside services were held on Tuesday April 21, 2009 at the National Cemetery in Fort Gibson, Oklahoma.

Roger Turk       Alan Roger Turk, 70, of Tucson, Arizona, formerly of Lindenhurst, New York, passed away on September 20, 2004. He was a licensed Professional Engineer, Civil and Structural, in Arizona and operated his own Consulting Engineering firm, since 1966.
      Roger, as he was known, was the son of the late Milton Turk, former Mayor of Lindenhurst. He enlisted in the Navy in January, 1952. After completing his boot training in San Diego and Radarman "A" school at Treasure Island he reported on board the USS Begor, APD-127. Three years later, he was released from active duty as a Radarman First Class and restarted his civilian education at the University of Arizona, majoring in Civil Engineering. Roger received his bachelor's degree in Civil Engineering in May, 1959 and immediately began graduate studies in Structural Engineering. He was a member of Tau Beta Pi, the Engineering Honor Society.
      He received a direct commission in the Naval Reserve in 1961. In the Naval Reserve, he served in a number of positions, including Executive Officer and Commanding Officer of a Naval Reserve Surface Division.
      Thirty years after first enlisting, Roger transferred to the Retired Reserve as a Commander.
      In addition to being a member of a number of national and international organizations, Roger was a Life Member of the Structural Engineers Association of Arizona and a Life Member of the American Society of Civil Engineers.
      Roger is survived by his brother and sister-in-law, Penrod and Barbara Turk, of Kansas City, Missouri.
      He requested no services and was buried at sea. (South Bay News October 6, 2004)

[Editor Note: Roger Turk is credited as being the driving force behind the USS Begor APD-127 Association while serving as Secretary for more than eight years. His shipmates acknowledge his contribution to our Association and give Roger their heartfelt thanks for a job well done]

Top of page



Dennis von Ting       Dennis von Ting, 77, of Eagle, ID passed away on Sunday April 5, 2015 at his home after a long battle with emphysema and prostate cancer.
      Dennis was born on July 18, 1937 in Glendale, CA to Gerald S. and Florence E. (Kincaid) von Ting. His childhood was spent in many locations until settling in Medford, OR. He attended Medford Senior High School, class of 1955, and then joined the Navy in that same year. After boot camp in San Diego, he was stationed in San Francisco, where he met and married Diane Adrian Doyle in 1957.
      Dennis was trained and worked in electronics and nuclear power. He served on the USS Keywadin (ATA-213), USS Bashaw (SS-241), USS Begor (APD-127), and USS Whetstone (LSD-25). After serving 9 years, he then went on to work at a private shipyard and finally at Mare Island, in Vallejo, CA until 1980.
      Dennis was a proud member of the Clan Kincaid of Scotland and The American Legion of Eagle and was also proud to have served his country in the US Navy.


William Walker       LCDR-CO 1949-51, passed away in February 1996 in San Francisco, California. He was a graduate of the U.S. Naval Academy, class of 1940, and was the sixth USS Begor commanding officer, retiring from the U.S. Navy, in 1970, as a Captain.

      LCDR-CO 1947-48, passed away (Date Unknown). He was the fourth USS Begor commanding officer and retired from the U.S. Navy as a Captain.

Carlos Watson       Dr. Carlos M. Watson, EdD, 88, of Terre Haute, IN, died at 0230 on November 24, 2001, in Davis Gardens Health Center. Early in his career he was a teacher and principal and most recently was a professor at Indiana State University for the School of Elementary Education.
      He was born September 29, 1913 in Sullivan County to William and Maude Mahan Watson. His first wife, Mary Watson, died in 1989. Survivors include his wife, Ruth Nees Watson; one son and one brother; three step-children and several nieces and nephews. He was preceded in death by his parents; one son, three brothers and one sister. He was a graduate of Indiana State University, where he earned his bachelor's degree and master's degree. Dr Watson earned his doctorate degree at Indiana University.
      He was a member of Centenary United Methodist Church, Terre Haute Elks Lodge 86, Terre Haute Exchange Club and Amateur Radio Association. He was a Navy veteran of WWll, having served as a Radioman on the USS Begor APD-127 as one of the original crew.
      He was buried at Roselawn Memorial Park. Memorial contributions may be made to the Alzheimer's Association or the American Cancer Society

Top of page

      QM3 1949-52 passed away in February 2001 as reported by shipmate Don Wilburn.

      Don “Duke” Gene Wilburn, 85, of Kailua, Oahu, died April 24, 2015, at Keaau. Born in West Virginia,he was a retired food processing and restaurant equipment sales company owner, a Navy veteran and member of the Mokulua Fishing Club and the Lanikai Community Association.

Joseph Wilde       FP3, 1955. Joseph was born January 6, 1932 in Rhineland, Texas to Charles and Annie Decker Wilde. He served in the United States Navy and was a member of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary Catholic church. He married Alice Jean Pennartz on June 21, 1958 in Decatur, Texas and was married 49 years at her death on October 28, 2007. He is also preceded in death by his sister, Charlene Thames and brother, Marvin Wilde.
      Additional details HERE.

Donald Wilkes       William Donald Wilkes, 71, retired employee of Monsanto, died Tuesday, Sept 20, 2005, at his residence in Culleoka, TN.
      Services were conducted at 11am, Saturday, September 24, 2005 at Oakes & Nichols Funeral Home with Dr. James Sampley and Bart Whatley officiating. Burial was in Friendship Cemetery with military honors provided by Herbert Griffin, American Legion Post 19. The family visited with friends from 4-8pm Friday at the funeral home.
      The Marshall County native was the son of the late Neal Grafton Wilkes and Jane Inman Wilkes. He was a graduate of Culleoka High School. In 1959 he married Dorothy Voss Wilkes of Culleoka who survives him. Mr. Wilkes served in the United States Navy aboard the USS Begor (APD-127) from 1952 to 1956. He was a member of Culleoka Community Church.
      Mr. Wilkes is survived, in addition to his wife, by one daughter and one son; three stepsons; one sister; eight grandchildren and five great grandchildren.

LCDR Edward A. Williams, 1956       Michael McDermott, Capt. Williams' son-in-law, reported the Captain's death on July 29, 2014. The Lompoc Record printed his full obituary online at lompocrecord.com. The following paragraphs are extracts from the obituary.
      Captain (USN Retired) Edward Albert Williams, 93, passed away on Friday, July 25, 2014 at the Comprehensive Care Center in Lompoc, California. Captain Williams served with distinction in the US Navy for 32 years. He was born in Coronado, California on October 1, 1920 to Albert Gale and Anna Held Williams. He joined the Navy as a sailor in 1940 but became a midshipman in 1943. The Captain saw three conflicts during his career - World War II, Korea and Viet Nam.
      He was the last surviving captain of the USS Begor (APD-127) and also commanded the USS Braine (DD-630).
      He graduated from San Diego State University with a degree in Economics and completed advanced training through the Navy and was an Anti Submarine Warfare Expert. His duty stations included the ASW school in San Diego as well as Hawaii more than once. His last duty was as Chief of Staff for the Anti Submarine Warfare Pacific Forces stationed at Ford Island in Honolulu. Captain Williams earned many citations and medals including the Legion of Merit Medal and the Navy Commendation Medal with Valor to name a few.
      Following his retirement from the service he worked as a Defense Contractor in Camarillo, California. After that, he and his wife Connie lived in Mesquite, Texas near family.

      Shipmate Valjean Williams, DC2 passed away in Milford, Utah on 22 September 2010. Shipmate Williams served in USS Begor (APD-127) during 1945-46. He is survived by his widow, Martha, 4 children, 13 grandchildren and 20 great grandchildren. He was preceded in death by 3 brothers, 1 sister and 1 granddaughter.
      Valjean was buried at Orem City Cemetery on 28 September 2010.

      Mailman, Begor plank-owner 1945. Our shipmate was buried with full military honors at Bower Cemetery in Longtown, Oklahoma on August 9, 2004. As reported by his Grandson, David Worthen.




      Mrs. Otto Zimmermann reported today,11/12/07, in a phone conversation with our USS Begor Historian, Gene Combs, that her husband, our shipmate and former Begor Executive Officer, Otto C. Zimmerman, Lieutenant 1951-52, passed away in November 2000 at the age of 80. He was living in Quincy, PA at the time of his death.

      MM3 1947-49 passed away in Jordan, Utah on November 9, 2002, at the age of 80, as reported by his wife, Loraine.

Marvin Zink       The death of Shipmate Marvin Zink, ENFN, 50-52, has been reported by his sister, Cheryl Spore. She provided several copies of papers from Marv's service record including Administrative Remarks by his Executive Office, LT J.R. Perry. Also, included was a copy of the Meritorius Captain's Mast by CO LCDR W. A. Walker. The Mast mentioned Marv's oustanding performance as the engineer of the LCPR used by the UDT detachment that blew up the Hungnam docks during the Korean War and his invaluable assistance to the detachment.

Top of page

Please report site problems or comments to    ussbegor@yahoo.com

Page Last Updated: 08/03/18