JOBIT: Bennett, Walter Francis Vincent [MC1942 RIP] 1990-Jan-12


U.S.S. Little Rock
Commanding Officer Biography
Page last updated: 14 January, 2019
Walter F. V. Bennett
24 Apr 68 – 15 Nov 69

Captain Bennett


Walter Francis Vincent Bennett was born in New York, New York, on December 29, 1919. He attended Hastings High School, Hastings-on-Hudson, New York, and Manhattan College in New York City , from which he received the degree of Bachelor of Science in Physics and Mathematics in 1942. On October 4, 1940 he enlisted in the U. S. Naval Reserve and on June 16, 1941 was appointed Midshipman. He attended the U. S. Naval Reserve Midshipman School at Northwestern University, Chicago, Illinois, and on September 12, 1941 was commissioned Ensign in the U. S. Naval Reserve. Advancing progressively in rank, he attained that of Captain, to date from January 1, 1961, having transferred from the Naval Reserve to the U. S. Navy on November 5, 1946.

After receiving his commission in 1941, he attended a course in naval engineering at Cornell University, Ithaca, New York. During the period May to August 1942, he had duty with the Inshore Patrol at the U. S. Naval Section Base, Corpus Christi, Texas, after which he served as Engineering Officer and Executive Officer of the USS SC-655, assuming command of that submarine chaser in March 1943. “Under his command, SC-655 participated in operations in North Africa, the Sicilian occupation and the landings at Salerno. “For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity….in action against the enemy during the invasion of Italy in September 1943….” he was awarded the Silver Star Medal.

The citation reads:

The President of the United States of America takes pleasure in presenting the Silver Star to Lieutenant Commander [then Lieutenant, Junior Grade] Walter F. Bennett, United States Navy, for conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity as Commanding Officer of the U.S.S. SC-655 in action against the enemy during the invasion of Italy in September 1943. Operating with the Amphibious Force during this period, Lieutenant Commander Bennett with great courage and skill maneuvered his ship – at night through known enemy mine fields in the face of enemy air attacks and fire from shore batteries to anchor in an assigned position 3,000 yards off the assault beaches. From this exposed position which he accurately established and maintained for six hours during air attacks and shore battery fire, he turned his searchlight beam to seaward and by this means and by voice radio guided the assault boat waves to the proper beaching points and thereby contributed materially to the timely and successful landing of the invasion forces. By his exceptional courage, determination and outstanding devotion to duty throughout this hazardous operation, Lieutenant Commander Bennett contributed significantly to the success of the assault landing and upheld the highest traditions of the United States Naval Service.

Action Date: September 1943
Service: Navy
Rank: Lieutenant Commander
Company: Commanding Officer
Division: U.S.S. SC-655

In May 1944 he joined the USS WILLIAM C. COLE {DE-641) as Executive Officer and Navigator and in November 1945 assumed command of that destroyer escort. While on board that vessel, he saw action during the assault and occupation of Okinawa Gunto. In October 1946 he reported as Commanding Officer of the USS HERBERT C. JONES (DE-137), a unit of the Atlantic Reserve Fleet, and during the period January to October 1947 commanded the USS FOGG ( DER-57 ).

He became Officer in Charge of the Navy Recruiting Station, Louisville, Kentucky, in December 1947 and for the year, June 1948 to June 1949, was a student at the Postgraduate School, Annapolis, Maryland. He continued instruction as a Graduate Student at Ohio State University at Columbus, from which he received the degree of Master of Science in Physics in 1951. In June of that year he reported as Assistant Progress Officer at the Armed Forces Special Weapons project, Washington, D. C., and while there also had duty at the U. S. Army Chemical Center, Edgewood, Maryland. He remained there until April 1952, when he joined the USS ALBANY (CA-l23), to serve as Tactical Officer and Navigator until March 1954. He was next assigned to the Atomic Energy Division, Office of the Chief of Naval Operations, Navy Department, Washington, D. C. While there he was an Instructor in the School of Engineering at the University of Virginia in 1957 and 1958. In July 1958 he joined the USS FLOYD B. PARKS (DD-884) as Commanding Officer.

Returning to duty in the Atomic Energy Division, Office of the Chief of Naval Operations in September 1960, he headed the Nuclear Weapons Employment Branch. In that capacity, he coordinated all research and development requirements in nuclear weapons effects areas with the Defense Atomic Support Agency and the Navy Technical Bureaus. From March 1961 until July 1964 he was Military Assistant to the Assistant Secretary of Defense (Atomic Energy), Washington, D. C. While in Washington, he also was an Associate in the Mathematics Department at George Washington University in 1961 and from 1961 to 1963 was an Instructor in the Mathematics Department, School of’ Engineering at the University of Virginia. He was awarded the Joint Service Commendation Medal and cited as follows:

“Captain Walter F. V. Bennett, United states Navy, distinguished himself by meritorious achievement during the period from February 24, 1961 to June 29, 1964. Captain Bennett…..has contributed in a meritorious manner to the successful accomplishment of the mission of the Office of the Secretary of Defense (Atomic Energy) . That office was primarily and continuously concerned at the highest levels, within the United States Government, with the formulation of policies and programs pertaining to atomic energy matters within the Department of Defense. The new NATO Agreement for Cooperation, now in the final stages of approval and formalization, for which Captain Bennett was the principal Department of Defense staff coordinator and representative, is illustrative of his significant contributions….”

In July 1964 he assumed command of the USS SHENANDOAH (AD-26) and in August 1965 was detached from that command for instruction at the Industrial College of the Armed Forces, Washington, D. C. In September 1966 he reported as Head of the Mathematics Department at the U. S. Naval Academy, Annapolis, Maryland, and in April 1968 became commanding Officer of the USS LITTLE ROCK (CLG-4). In addition to the Silver Star Medal and the Joint Service Commendation Medal, Captain Bennett has the American Defense Service Medal; American Campaign Medal; European-African-Middle Eastern Campaign Medal with three stars; Asiatic-Pacific Campaign Medal with one star; World War II Victory Medal; Navy Occupation Service Medal; China Service Medal; and the National Defense Service Medal with bronze star.

He is married to the former Kathleen Eleanor Nestor of New Rochelle, New York, and they have two daughters, Betsy Ann and Kathleen Marie Bennett.

– The Washington Post – January 12, 1990

Walter F.V. Bennett, 70, a retired Navy captain and nuclear engineer, died of cancer Jan. 8 at a nursing home in Daytona Beach, FL.

Capt. Bennett, who had lived in Florida since 1985, was a native of New York and a graduate of Cornell University. He received a master’s degree in nuclear physics from Ohio State University and a master’s degree in business administration from George Washington University. He also graduated from the Industrial College of Armed Forces.

He was commissioned in the Navy during World War II, and served in the Mediterranean and the Pacific. Later assignments included tours in the office of the assistant secretary of defense for atomic energy, as commander of a guided missile cruiser and as head of the mathematics department at the U.S. Naval Academy in Annapolis. His last assignment was as a nuclear engineer in the Office of Naval Research.

Capt. Bennett retired from active duty in 1972 and settled in the Washington area. He then worked for Virginia Electric Power Co. in Richmond and later for the Bechtel Corp. before he retired a second time in 1977.

His decorations included the Silver Star and the Joint Service Commendation Medal.

Survivors include his wife, Kathleen Bennett of Falls Church; two daughters, Betsy Lurey of Atlanta and Kathleen Schweiker of Chantilly; a sister, Adrienne Erd of Blauvelt, N.Y.; and seven grandchildren.

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A note from Betsy Bennett Lurey

Received by the USS Little Rock Association
08 April 2008

Dear Men of the Little Rock,

My father loved you. His name was Captain Walter Bennett and he was the commanding officer of the Little Rock in Gaeta from April 1968 – November 1969. My Mother, Katie Bennett, loved you all as well.

Dad devoted over 30 years to the Navy and he died of cancer in 1990, too soon for many of his ten grandchildren to know him. My sister and I still miss him dearly.

I am compiling a book of memories about Dad. Would you help me? If you remember my Dad (for better or worse!) would you email me?

Would you be so kind to forward this message to all the fine men who served the Navy so well on this fine ship?

God bless you all.

Betsy Bennett Lurey

Crew Remembrances & Anecdotes

Betsy Bennett-Lurey

“My father, Walter F Bennett, Capt, USN, was Commanding Officer of the Little Rock in Gaeta, Italy, from April ’68 to November ’69. It would mean so much if you would share any memories of him with me. The Little Rock’s men meant the world to him. He and my Mother loved you all. Dad died in 1990 and we all miss him dearly. Mom (Katie Bennett) is now 85 and doing well in Northern Virginia. I can be reached at Many thanks.”

Mark Lehmann Lt(jg) 1966-1968

(This message was sent to Capt. Bennett’s daughter Betsy)

…..I was a Lt (jg) under your dad. He was a great CO and a great guy and he taught me a lot about the Navy, ship handling and life. I’ll write more directly to you in the next few days as I’m flying today and need to run.

Both my wife Gail and I have several nice stories about your dad that I’ll send directly to your email address. Glad you wrote in.

(Add yours….. Contact Art Tilley)


Bennett, Walter Francis Vincent [MC???? RIP]

Guestbook: None cited

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Colon, Philip J. (MC1962) added this request to his prayer circle.

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JFOUND: Lofaso, Vincent [MC????] “Political Uncertainty Will Plague Europe”


Political Uncertainty Will Plague Europe Throughout 2019
By Vincent Lofaso On Jan 14, 2019

*** begin quote ***

Vincent Lofaso

Vincent Lofaso is an independent researcher focusing on geopolitical issues in the Middle East and North Africa. He writes for a range of outlets like Eurasia Review, The Iranian, and The International Policy Digest. Vincent holds a bachelor’s degree in political science from Manhattan College.

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Lofaso, Vincent [MC????]

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Dear John,

I do not find any thing in my ‘stuff’ for Vincent.


McEneney, Mike (MC1953)

[JR: Thanks, Mike. Much appreciated.]

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JOBIT: Frawley, Thomas F. [MC1959 RIP] 2019-Jan-13


Thomas F. Frawley
1933 – 2019 Obituary 

Louisville – Thomas F. Frawley, 86, of Louisville, passed peacefully away in the early morning hours of January 13, 2019 with his family by his side.

Tom was born to the late John and Catherine Frawley in New York City on January 9, 1933. He graduated from LaSalle Academy and earned his Bachelor of Arts from Manhattan College in New York. He met his late wife, Caryl (nee Johnson) of 47 years, in Manhattan, eventually settling in Syracuse, where they lived for 34 years and raised two children.

Tom served in the United States Army and rose to the rank of Staff Sergeant while serving in the Korean War. He was thrilled to take an Honor Flight to Washington, DC, in June of 2015, with his son Matthew as a companion. He started his career in the early 1960’s serving as a Federal Investigator. One of his first assignments was traveling to Alabama to enforce African-American’s right to vote. He then worked as a Regional Director in the Office of Personnel Management (OPM) for the federal government, before retiring in 1995.

Tom was active in the community, serving on several boards, including the Central New York Rape Crisis Center (President), the Optimist Club’s basketball league (Commissioner), and the United Way, along with numerous other not-for-profit and government service organizations. Tom, a devout Catholic, was an original member of Pope John’s XXIII Roman Catholic Church (formerly St. John’s) in Liverpool, NY, and most recently a member of Epiphany Catholic Church in Anchorage, KY.

Tom is survived by his two children: Matthew, his wife Jill, and their three children Christopher, Andrew, and Elizabeth, of Pewee Valley; and Catherine, her husband Bill, and their two children, Billy and Cate, of Aurora, Colorado. He is also survived by a brother, Robert, and a host of nieces and nephews. His children and grandchildren lovingly knew him as Poppy.

Tom was fond of liverwurst, a good dry martini, and the Yankees. He was an early supporter of the women’s rights movement (married to Caryl, a successful politician, it was part of the deal). He supported her and nurtured his children as a loving husband and father. He enjoyed playing golf well into his old age – particularly after retiring and moving from snowy Syracuse to lovely Louisville. Tom had lasting friendships with several grammar school buddies and enjoyed visiting with them and recalling fond memories. He will be dearly missed by family and friends.

Visitation will be Tuesday evening from 4-8 PM, at Ratterman Funeral Home, 12900 Shelbyville Rd, East Louisville. A memorial mass in celebration of his life will be held at Epiphany Catholic Church, 914 Old Harrods Creek Road, Louisville, KY, 40223 on Wednesday, January 16 at 10 AM. The mass will be followed by a reception for family and friends.

Expressions of sympathy may be made in Tom’s memory to Hosparus Health ( or to The Michael J. Fox Foundation for Parkinson’s Research ( ).

Published in The Courier-Journal on Jan. 15, 2019


Frawley, Thomas F. [MC???? RIP]

Guestbook: Same link

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Dear John,

I believe that Thomas is a member of the Class of 1959.

May He Rest In Peace.


McEneney, Mike (MC1953)

[JR: Thanks, Mike. Much appreciated.]

Frawley, Thomas F. [MC1959 RIP]

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JFOUND: Maguire, Joseph [MC1968] Dir @ NCTC


Joseph Maguire

The Honorable Joseph Maguire was sworn in as the sixth director of
the National Counterterrorism Center (NCTC) Dec. 27, 2018. He previously
served as NCTC’s Deputy Director for Strategic Operational Planning
from 2007 to 2010, and represented the Center as a part of the National
Security Council’s Counterterrorism Study Group.

Prior to his confirmation, Maguire served as president and CEO of the
Special Operations Warrior Foundation, a non-profit organization that
provides college scholarships and educational counseling to the
surviving children of fallen special operations personnel, and immediate
financial grants to severely combat-wounded and hospitalized special
operations personnel and their families. Prior to leading the
foundation, he was a vice president with Booz Allen Hamilton.

Maguire retired from the United States Navy in 2010 as a vice
admiral, culminating a 36-year career as a naval special warfare
officer. He commanded at every level, including the Naval Special
Warfare Command.

He earned his bachelor’s degree from Manhattan College and master’s
in Scientific and Technical Intelligence from the Naval Postgraduate
School in Monterey, California. Maguire also served as a national
security fellow at Harvard University.

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Maguire, Joseph [MC????]

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Dear John,

I believe that Joseph is a member of the class of 1968.


McEneney, Mike (MC1953)

[JR: Thanks, Mike. Much appreciated.]

Maguire, Joseph [MC1968]

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JEMAIL: Scudo, Bob (MC1969) missed a week


Did you publish one last weekend? I didn’t see it.

Scudo, Bob (MC1969)

[JR: Yup every week like clockwork.]

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JEMAIL: O’Connell, Bill (MC1959) wants me to show my work?



I am interested in how you calculated your estimate that you would have to live to the ripe old age of 132 to “steal back” the Social Security money “stolen” from you. Seems much too long a payback period especially in that you are not adjusting for present value. Please provide your methodology. As to your terminology I think a better term would be “recovering” rather than stealing back. It seems to me impossible to steal something that is yours and I would hope that no one who benefitted from a Manhattan education would consider in engaging in any aspect of stealing, even as you call it, stealing back.

I always look forward to Sunday morning and an second cup of coffee while I enjoy Jasper Jottings. Thanks for your production efforts and please keep JJ coming each week.

Bill O’Connell, ’59

[JR: Unfortunately, I calculated a while ago and don’t have the details any more. “Recovering” rather than “stealing”?  Not sure of the real difference. Once the Gooferment “stole” it  from me, one has to use “self-help” to get what one can back. When the “revolution” starts, I’ll be down to the barricades. Glad you like the Jottings. ]

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POSITRACTION: “You are perfect” pencils


When Teacher Asks Students to Share Supplies, Boy Offers Up Pencils With Sweet, Personal Messages
By Good News Network-Nov 8, 2018


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As it turns out, the boy’s mother had written personal, individual
messages of love and encouragement on every single pencil, saying things
like “You are perfect” and “I am proud of you” and “This will be a
great year.”

“This probably took his mom a few minutes to do yet it lit up his
whole day at school,” says Cox. “He wasn’t embarrassed that his mom
wrote on his pencils. Thanks to his mom, he was reminded of his self
worth and wanted to share the same feeling with his classmates.”

Cox posted a photo of the pencils to Facebook where it was shared
thousands of times by adults praising the boy and his mother for their
compassion. Some have even taken it upon themselves to do something
similar for their own students – because, in Cox’s words, “imagine the
look on a child’s face when they are reminded that they are important,
talented, loved, knowledgeable and so much more … This is why I teach.”

*** end quote ***

Now I wonder how I can do something so simple, inexpensive, and life changing?

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