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USS Lansdale & The Lee Brothers

Clarence Herbert (C.H.) & Frank Lee, sons of Frank Herbert & Mardell (Beamer) Lee, both joined the Navy just in time for World War II.

After finding many references to their military careers in the Mansfield News (Ohio), I was curious what ship they served on together….

I discovered that it was the USS Lansdale. C.H. had been a crew member of the Lansdale since the date of commissioning, as according to many muster roll lists on I found a later muster list showing them both aboard the USS Lansdale on 31 December 1941:

Clarence H. & Frank R. Lee crewmen of the USS Lansdale 31 Dec 1941

Later I found a reference to them both still aboard the USS Lansdale, by the nature of their muster rolls found at, in a clipping from the Mansfield News Journal for the marriage of C.H. Lee, 7 August 1942 :)

USS Lansdale, DD-426 (as pictured below) :

USS Lansdale (DD-426) off the New York Navy Yard, 22 October 1943. Official U.S. Navy Photograph, from the collections of the Naval History and Heritage Command. Photo #: NH 107272.

Photo of USS Lansdale found in C.H.'s stuff

As according the many cited sources & papers, the USS Lansdale was indeed in yard for a period of time between escorts in 1943 in which Mr. Burkett went to New York to visit her son, C.H. Lee who remained still aboard the USS Lansdale…

(NOTE: the informant wasn’t correct on “his” assumption of last names due to Mrs. Burkett’s second marriage… but other clippings clarify it is indeed the correct connection based on her residence location.) 

There was a brief time when they were both enlisted in which they could still serve together, before the loss of the Sullivan brothers… 5 brothers aboard the same vessel that was sunk in 1942. The loss of all five brothers on one ship moved the Navy from allowing brothers to serve on the same vessel again. Due to these new rules, Frank & C.H. were split up. Since C.H. was a “plank owner”, he remained with the USS Lansdale while Frank was reassigned.

Which explains why “Mrs. Carl Burkett” only went to see one son in 1943 & not both when the USS Lansdale was pulled into New York’s port.

C.H. remained aboard the USS Lansdale until late 1943, just before it was sank in 1944 by German planes. One family story holds a drunk night in a bar where he swears he was on it when it sank,… who knows. His muster rolls found on show him reassigned to the USS Anteaus in August 1943, & then the USS DeLong in late 1943 and 1944, and the USS Kline in 1944-1946.


About Genesis 1:29

I am just one woman trying to praise God, raise a family, and help others. If I help anyone, if I reach anyone through Him, then I have fulfilled my purpose.

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