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ex-HMS Burges (BDE-16)

USS Edgar G. Chase (DE 16)

Flag Hoist / Radio Call Sign:
N - Q - A - C
Awards, Citations and Campaign Ribbons

Precedence of awards is from top to bottom, left to right
American Campaign Medal - European-Africa-Middle East Campaign Medal - WWII Victory Medal

Class: Evarts
Type: GMT (diesel-electric tandem motor drive, short hull, 3" guns)
Displacement: 1,140 tons (light), 1,430 tons (full)
Length: 283' 6" (wl), 289' 5" (oa)
Beam: 35' 0" (extreme)
Draft: 11' 0" (draft limit)
Propulsion: 4 GM Model 16-278A diesel engines with electric drive, 6000 shp, 2 screws
Speed: 19 kts
Range: 4,150 nm @ 12 knots
Armament: 3 - 3"/50 Mk22 (1x3), 1 - 1.1"/75 cal. Mk2 quad AA (4x1), 9 x 20mm Mk 4 AA, 1 Hedgehog Projector Mk10 (144 rounds), 8 Mk6 depth charge projectors, 2 Mk9 depth charge tracks
Complement: 15 / 183
Edgar G. Chase (DE 16) Building and Operational Data:
  • 14 March 1942: Keel laid as BDE-16 by the Mare Island Navy Yard, Vallejo, Cal.
  • 26 September 1942: Launched as Burges (BDE-16) and christened, sponsored for the British lend lease by Mrs. Ernest D. Wichels
  • 19 February 1943: Retained by the U.S. Navy and assigned the name Edgar G. Chase
  • 20 March 1943: Commissioned by Captain A. D. Denny, Captain of the Mare Island Navy Yard, Lcdr. J. J. Morony, USNR, in command
  • 16 October 1945: Decommissioned at Charleston, S.C. after 2 years and 7 months of service
  • 01 November 1945: Struck from the NVR
  • 18 March 1947: Sold to Edward Goodman, of Harris Structural Steel of New Jersey, subsequently broken up for scrap
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    Edgar G. Chase

    Edgar G. Chase


    Edgar Griffith Chase was born 12 September 1910 in Washington, D.C., and graduated from the Naval Academy in 1932. Assigned to the battleship USS Texas (BB 35), he served in her until January of 1935 when he was transferred, placing USS Worden (DD 352) in commission. Promoted to Lieutenant Junior Grade aboard Worden he was transferred to the 16th Naval District in April 1936 and then to USS Stewart (DD 224) that July. In January of 1939 he was transferred to USS Constitution (IX 21) at Boston, Mass., and one year later in January of 1939 he moved on to the U.S. Naval Academy. He left the Academy in June of 1940 for USS Shaw (DD 373), where he was promoted to Lieutenant in November of 1940.

    In April of 1941 he was transferred to USS Meredith (DD 434) as her engineering officer and was soon serving as her executive officer. During the Battle for Guadalcanal, Meredith was attacked on 15 October 1942 and sunk by Japanese dive-bombers off the island of San Cristobal. Lt. Chase was lost on 17 October 1942, two days after Meredith was sunk. He and dozens of other survivors had not been rescued and he "had become increasingly disoriented, the result of the concussion he had sustained from a bomb explosion on the ship. Early on the second day, he stood up in the raft and said, "I think I'll get some cigarettes." Before he could be restrained, he dove off, swam away, and was never seen again." Lieutenant Edgar G. Chase is memorialized on the Tablets of the Missing - U.S. Navy, in the Manila American Cemetery and Memorial, the Philippine Islands.

    USS Edgar G. Chase (DE 16) (1943-1945) was the first ship named in his honor.

    (Kimberly's grandfather, Edgar Griffith Chase, pictured here.)
    Kimberley B. Chase-Carter
    Edgar G. Chase
    366k 26 September 1942: Vallejo, Cal. - The future HMS Burges (BDE 16) slides down the building way at Mare Island Navy Yard.

    (U.S. Navy Photo)
    Darryl Baker
    PNCM, USNR (ret.)

    Vallejo Naval & Historical Museum
    Edgar G. Chase
    227k 26 September 1942: Vallejo, Cal. - Burges (BDE 16) rests in the center of the channel after her launching at Mare Island Navy Yard.

    (U.S. Navy Photo )
    Edgar G. Chase
    186k News clipping of the christening of the future HMS Burges (DE 16) at Mare Island Navy Yard on 26 September 1942. Caption on the article reads: Capt. Frederick Crisp, left and Radm W. L. Friedell, right, look on as Mrs. Ernest Wichels, center smashes bottle of champagne against bow of HMS Burges, British escort vessel launched yesterday afternoon at Mare Island Navy Yard. Mrs. Clarence Knott, matron of honor, looks on at extreme left.
    Edgar G. Chase
    119k Actual photo used in above newspaper article.
    Edgar G. Chase
    220k 20 March 1943: The commissioning crew of USS Edgar G. Chase (DE 16) taken at Mare Island. Lcdr J. J. Morony, CO, and Mrs. Ernest H. Wichels, Sponsor, are seen in the middle of the second row.

    (U.S. Navy Photo #DE-16-1900-43)
    Edgar G. Chase
    130k 20 March 1943: The ships' officer and civilian guests salute at the commissioning ceremonies aboard USS Edgar G. Chase (DE 16) at Mare Island. I can only identify Mr. & Mrs. Ernest H. Wichels, right foreground in the photo. Mrs. Wichels was ship's sponsor.

    (U.S. Navy Photo #DE-16-1907-43)

    (Note from Cmdr. William H. Roberts, USN (ret.): There’s a lieutenant and two ensigns in the front row. The ensign in the middle of the row is my father, William Henry Roberts, then Ensign, USNR. He later served in USS Trumpeter (DE 180).
    Edgar G. Chase
    157k 20 March 1943: The flag is raised for the first time aboard Edgar G. Chase during her commissioning ceremonies at Mare Island. Shipyard records indicate that Edward C. Daly (DE17), inboard (only mast visible), and Gilmore (DE 18), outboard (without mast) are forward of the Chase.

    (U.S. Navy Photo #DE-16-1903-43)
    Edgar G. Chase
    77k 20 March 1943: Photo of the commissioning ceremonies aboard Edgar G. Chase at Mare Island.

    (U.S. Navy Photo #DE-16-1902-43)
    Edgar G. Chase
    74k 02 April 1943: Degaussing Range, San Francisco Bay William H. Roberts, M.D.
    Commissioning crew
    First Lieutenant / USNR
    Edgar G. Chase
    382k 1943: San Francisco Bay - Undated overhead photo of USS Edgar G. Chase underway, shortly after her commissioning. The time of the photo is evidenced by her one color non-graded paint scheme and the fact that her hull identification number is complete, (DE 16).

    (U.S. Navy Photo #80-G-238903 from the United States National Archives)
    Mike Green
    Port Angeles, Wash.
    Edgar G. Chase
    161k 1943: San Francisco Bay - The destroyer escort USS Edgar G. Chase (DE 16) in San Francisco Bay. Yerba Buena Island and the San Francisco-Oakland Bay Bridge are in the background.

    (U.S. Navy photo #NH 54339 from the collections of the U.S. Naval History and Heritage Command)
    Bob Hurst
    Worksop, Nottinghamshire,
    England, United Kingdom
    Edgar G. Chase
    196k circa July 1944: at sea, the Pacific Ocean - The crew of Edgar G. Chase conducts 40mm gunnery practice with the Bofors mount trained on the beam to starboard. Note the helmets stored in racks welded onto the supporting structure for the gun director (R) and some of the observers with cotton in their ears. The presence of the sailor with the letters 'YORK' stenciled on the back hof is chambray shirt is somewhat of a mystery. The ship's muster rolls for the period show no one on board at that time, with that name, either listed as a passenger or on the ship's company with this name. 
    (Navsource Note: York, Philip Ray, SN 621-00-85, S2c, was a plankowner. He was inducted into the Navy on 05 September 1942 in Des Moines, Iowa and reported aboard Chase on 20 March 1943.)

    (U.S. Navy Photo #80-G-238903 from the United States National Archives)
    Mike Green
    Port Angeles, Wash.
    Edgar G. Chase
    194k circa 1944: no location - A sailor stands watch in Edgar G. Chase's after motor room monitoring the gauges at the propulsion control board.

    (U.S. Navy Photo #80-G-238886 from the United States National Archives)

    Edgar G. Chase History
    View the USS Edgar G. Chase (DE 16) DANFS history entry located on the Naval History and Heritage Command web site.
    View a short article on the design and development of the Evarts Class DE submitted by Bob Sables.

    Edgar G. Chase's Commanding Officers
    Thanks to Wolfgang Hechler & Ron Reeves
    Dates of Command Commanding Officers
    1.) 20 Mar. 1943 - 18 Aug. 1943Lcdr. John Joseph Morony, USNR (Comm. CO) (Mt. Pleasant, Iowa)
    2.) 18 Aug. 1943 - 30 Jun. 1944Lcdr. Frank William Auld, USNR (New Sewickley, Pa.)
    3.) 30 Jun. 1944 - 16 Oct. 1945Lcdr. Russ Victor Bradley, USNR (Decomm. CO) (Montclair, N.J.)

    Crew Contact And Reunion Information

    Note About Contacts

    Contact information is compiled from various sources over a period of time and may, or may not, be correct. Every effort has been
    made to list the newest contact. However, our entry is only as good as the latest information that's been sent to us. We list only
    a contact for the ship if one has been sent to us. We do NOT have crew lists, rosters, or deck logs available. Please see the
    Frequently Asked Questions section on NavSource's Main Page for that information.

    Additional Resources

    Tin Can Sailors
    The U.S. Navy Memorial
    Destroyer Escort Sailors Association
    The Destroyer Escort Historical Museum
    The Destroyer History Foundation
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    This Page Created And Maintained By Mike Smolinski
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    by Paul R. Yarnall, All Rights Reserved.
    Page Last Updated: 29 December 2021