USS Frank E. Evans DD-754
By Fran McVey

ultimately his wife and all his money. He, like many others on both crews, continue to suffer. Many have become alcoholics, failed to hold jobs, not been in meaningful relationships, etc. Classic PTSD symptoms.

    I still remember the discussion among my classmates at the time. We agreed that everyone of us had made junior officer, “nugget mistakes” but had gotten away with it, been able to make it right, learn from it, and move on. Here was a case where an inexperienced officer made a mistake with the most dire consequences possible - 74 shipmates killed and his ship lost.

    My greatest fear as a young officer was that I would make a mistake resulting in someone getting killed.

    Frank Edgar Evans (19 Nov 1876 – 25 Nov 1941) served as an infantryman in the Spanish–American War, and was commissioned in the US Marine Corps on 15 February 1900.

    He was born in Franklin, Pennsylvania on 19 November 1876. He served in the Philippines and in the United States prior to World War I, during which he won the Navy Cross and other awards for the distinction of his service in the Marine Brigade of the American Expeditionary Force in France. His postwar service

    Named for Brigadier General Frank Evans, commissioned 3 February 1945, USS Frank E. Evans arrived at Pearl Harbor on 18 May 1945 for her final training, and crossed to Eniwetok, Guam, Ulithi, and Okinawa on escort duty. Reaching action waters on 24 June, she was assigned to radar picket and local escort duty, often firing on enemy aircraft. At the close of hostilities, she patrolled the Yellow Sea and the Gulf of Chihli, embarked released Americans from prisoner of war camps near Dairen, Manchuria, covered occupation landings at Jinsen, Korea, and continued to operate in the Far East until 6 March 1946 when she sailed from Tsingtao for San Francisco. Immobilized there on 31 March, Evans was decommissioned and placed in reserve on 14 December 1949.

    Recommissioned on 15 September 1950 for duty in the Korean War. On 18 June 1951, she was struck by 30 shrapnel hits, which caused minor wounds to four crewmembers before the destroyer silenced the enemy battery. It was during this time that Frank E. Evans earned the nicknames “Lucky Evans”

included duty in Haiti, where from 1927 to 1930 he commanded the Constabulary Detachment and was Chief of the Gendarmerle d’Haiti. Brigadier General Evans also was District Marine Officer of several Naval Districts. Retired 1 December 1940, he made his home in Honolulu, Hawaii, where he died 25 November 1941.

Evans after the collision

Damage to HMAS Melbourne

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