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Adapted from "Lieutenant Charles E. Bauch, United States Navy, Deceased" [biography, dated 6 February 1959] in Modern Biographical Files collection, Navy Department Library.

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  • nhhc-topics:maintenance-repairs
  • nhhc-topics:aviation
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  • nhhc-document-types:Biography
Wars & Conflicts
  • nhhc-wars-conflicts:world-war-i
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  • nhhc-location-of-archival-materials:NHHC-Library

Charles Everett Bauch

26 May 1897-31 March 1931

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Charles Everett Bauch was born in Dorchester, Massachusetts, on May 26, 1897, son of Charles A. and Margaret Bauch.  He attended the Huntington School and Tufts College in Boston, Massachusetts, and on April 20, 1917, enrolled in the US Naval Reserve Force as a Motor Machinist.  He was commissioned Ensign USNRF on June 4, 1918, and was promoted to Lieutenant (jg) on September 16, 1919.  On November 8, 1921, he was honorably discharged to accept appointment as Ensign in the US Navy, and subsequently advance to Lieutenant (junior grade) (permanent) on June 4, 1923, and to Lieutenant (permanent) on June 4, 1926.

After his enlistment in the Naval Reserve Force, he was graduated from Aviation Ground School, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and on June 20, 1919, he was designated Naval Aviator (Dirigible), having qualified as a Free Balloon and Airship Pilot with the Naval Aviation Detachment at Akron, Ohio, and also held the designation Naval Aviator (Airship).

From June 1918 until September of that year he was attached to the Naval Air Station, Rockaway, Long Island, New York, then reported to the Navy Department, Washington, DC, where he was assigned to the Bureau of Construction and Repair.  From August 31, 1921 until March 9, 1923, he served in the newly established Bureau of Aeronautics, Navy Department, leaving there for an assignment at the Naval Air Station, Lakehurst, New Jersey.  He was the pilot of the Navy’s first semi-rigid airship, and also was on the initial flight of the C-7, the first airship to be inflated with helium.

During the construction of the dirigible Shenandoah, he was serving as Assistant to the Manager of Construction, at the Naval Air Station, Lakehurst, and was a member of the trial crew of the Shenandoah and a member of her regular complement until her destruction near Ava, Ohio, in September 1925.  Landing in the after-section of the dirigible, he directed the efforts of the survivors in that portion of the ship to save themselves.  He had made the transcontinental flight of the USS Shenandoah in 1924, and subsequently made flights in the USS Los Angeles as a member of her crew during the period November 1926 until July 1930.  He had also made the flight to Friedrichshafen, Germany, in 1928, and had additional duty there for a short while.

On February 12, 1931, he was ordered to Akron for duty in connection with fitting out the Navy’s new rigid airship, the ZRS-4, and on board when commissioned.  He reported on March 18, 1931, having been the first officer ordered to the ZRS-4, the trials of which were to be held in July.  On March 31, 1931, returning from a dinner, where he was Guest of Honor he was killed when the car which he was driving (Lieutenant, now Vice Admiral, Thomas G.W. Settle was a passenger in the car) was wrecked near Akron.  He was buried in Arlington National Cemetery early in April 1931.

Lieutenant Bauch had the Victory Medal, Aviation Clasp, for service in World War I.

END

Published: Mon Mar 08 08:20:49 EST 2021