Cerro Gordo County

Duane H. Halsten

Darrell J. Halsten


Duane Halsten Is Missing
in Action on Submarine

War Department Sends Word to Parents
That Submarine Is Overdue

Mr. and Mrs. Jack Halsten, 2216 Delaware S. E., have received word from the war department that their son, Dwane (sic) Halsten, fireman 2nd class, was missing in action on submarine duty. The message stated that the submarine was overdue.

Fireman Halsten had his last leave here in Aug., 1942. He had not been heard from for 2 months. He entered the service in June, 1942, and took his boot training at Great Lakes [IL], later attending an electrical school at St. Louis, Mo. From there he went to New London, Conn., for submarine training and from there to Portsmouth, N. H.

Halsten, now 18, attended the Mason City schools. He has a brother, Darrell, seaman 2nd class, somewhere in the Pacific. His grandparents, Mr. and Mrs. Frank St. Peter, live at 40 21st S. E.

Source: The Globe Gazette, Mason City, Iowa, Tuesday, November 16, 1943, Page 11 (photo included)

Mother of Missing Sailor Seeks
Letter From His Girl, Charlotte

St. Louis, (AP) – A Mason City, Iowa, mother whose son is missing in action aboard a submarine, has issued a plea for a letter from “A girl named Charlotte” whose picture was in her boy’s scrapbook.

The mother is Mrs. Jack Halsten, 2216 Delaware avenue S. E., who was informed by the navy 2 weeks ago that her son, Dwane (sic) Halsten, electrician’s mate, was missing in action above the submarine on which he served.

Mrs. Halsten sent her letter and the girl’s photograph to the U. S. O. Catholic Service club in St. Louis.

The photograph, signed “to a swell guy, from Charlotte,” is of a pretty dark-haired girl. It was torn in its removal from the book. The picture and name are all Mrs. Halsten knows of Charlotte.

“I do not know who to write to, but 1 year ago, Nov. 29, 1942, I received a card which said Dwane was a guest at your club that day. So I’m writing to see if you can help me find any of Dwane’s friends.”

His letters written during 16 weeks of training here mentioned sailor friends only by nicknames or given names – “Jocky,” “Strings,” and “frisky Fitzgerald.”

“I’d like to hear from any of them, especially Charlotte.”

She sent along a picture of Dwane, too, and in her mother’s way put down a few facts about a son: “He is only 18. His birthday is Christmas eve, when he will be 19. He was called “Swede” or “Red.” His hair is red and he is tall.

“I have prayed and I hope good word will come soon.”

Source: The Globe Gazette, Mason City, Iowa, Wednesday, December 01, 1943, Page 11

Charlotte, Where Are You?

Pictured above is Charlotte, from whom Mrs. Jack Halsten, Mason City, mother of missing sailor, Dwane Halsten, seeks a letter. The photograph signed “to a swell guy from Charlotte,” was torn in its removal from Dwane’s scrap book.

The picture was sent by the Mason City woman to the USO Catholic Service club of St. Louis, where Dwane was a guest a year ago.

Mrs. Halsten was informed 2 weeks ago that her son, an electrician’s mate, was missing in action aboard a submarine.

Source: The Globe Gazette, Mason City, Iowa, Thursday, December 02, 1943, Page 17 (photo included of Charlotte)

“Charlotte” Has Been Found
But Married to Another Man

Picture of Girl in Missing Boy’s Scrap Book Helps Little

“Charlotte” has been found – and she is married to another man in the service.

That is the answer Mrs. Jack Halsten, 2216 Delaware S. E., received Monday in regard to an inquiry printed in newspapers shortly after Dwane Halsen was reported missing in action Nov. 16.

Dwane, son of Mrs. Halsten, was an electrician’s mate on a submarine now long overdue. When his mother received news that he was missing in action, she sought to contact a girl whose picture Dwane has pasted in his scrapbook.

“To a swell guy from Charlotte” the girl had signed the picture. Aside from this Mrs. Halsten had no other means of knowing who the girl was or when she had last heard from her son.

But “Charlotte’s” letter explained all Monday. She wrote that she could add nothing to the whereabouts of Dwane, but hoped that Mrs. Halsten would receive more definite information soon regarding her son.

“Charlotte” is now living in Illinois – and her husband is in the service. Other than this Mrs. Halsten learned little about her son. The picture she had put so much hope in had been torn from the scrapbook and given to newspapers in hope that something more could be learned. Monday that search was at a deadend.

“A letter that did me a lot of good,” said Mrs. Halsten, “came from a USO hostess in St. Louis.” Dwane had told her that his mother had done everything she could for him.

A stack of 53 letters was received by Mrs. Halsten after “Charlotte’s” picture had been published. They came from all over the country. Most of them were from mothers, many of whom had lost sons on submarines. All of these were letters of prayers for Dwane.

The last letter she received was from a 12 year old boy. One letter was in Swedish.A teacher of Dwane’s had seen the clipping and she wrote that “Dwane surely was a swell fellow.”  That’s the way they came in.

Dwane’s parents received his last letter written Sept. 11. A letter from his brother, Darrell, who is somewhere in the Pacific, was written in October. He knew nothing of Dwane being missing in action at that time.

Source: The Globe Gazette, Mason City, Iowa, Monday, December 06, 1943, Page 11

Gold Star for Dwane Halsten
to Be Placed on Church Flag

First Such Star on Flag with
Additional Stars in Sunday Service

The first gold star to go on the service flag at the Wesley Methodist church is to be placed there Sunday in the morning service in memory of Dwane Halsten, 19, fireman 2/c, son of Mr. and Mrs. Jack Halsten, 2216 Delaware S. E., lost on a submarine in the Pacific Nov. 16.

Though the Halstens have had no direct word from headquarters other than that heir son has been missing since Nov. 16, according to newspaper stories Tuesday, the navy department has announced the sinking of the submarine Cisco of which Halsten was one of 65 crew members lost.

Additional stars to the more than 100 already on the flag at the Wesley church for other servicemen will also be placed there during the morning service, said the Rev. Paul A. Peterson, pastor.

Source: The Globe Gazette, Mason City, Iowa, Wednesday, February 09, 1944, Page 8

Wesley Plans Special Events

Sunday and Monday will be busy days at Wesley church. At the morning service, 2 Boy Scout troops will be guests and will stand at attention when 10 service stars will be placed on the flag. In addition, the gold star of Duane Halsten will be attached. . . .

Source: The Globe Gazette, Mason City, Iowa, Friday, February 11, 1944, Page 11


Darrell J. Halsten, electrician’s mate 2/c, son of Mr. and Mrs. Jack Halsten, 2216 Delaware S. E., left for San Francisco following a leave from 33 months of overseas service. Mate Halsten had been with the navy since before Pearl Harbor, having been stationed at Pearl Harbor all of the summer before the attack in December, 1941. At the time of the attack he was home on leave, his last one until now.

After reporting to San Francisco, Mate Halsten will be sent to Syracuse, N. Y., to attend a turbo-electric school. On his trip home he came 8,000 miles by plane from New Hebrides to Hawaii, a 2 day trip, it was stated. From Hawaii he came to San Francisco.

Mate Halsten had served aboard a destroyer and repair ship, then was transferred to an island about a year ago. His is a brother of Duane Halsten, missing on the submarine U. S. S. Cisco since last November. (Lock photo)

Source: The Globe-Gazette, Mason City, Iowa, Friday, September 08, 1944, Page 8 (photo included)

Death of Duane Halsten
Confirmed by U. S. Navy

Has Been Carried on Official Records
as Missing Since 1943

The death of Duane H. Halsten, fireman 1/c, who has been carried on the official records of the navy department as missing in action since Nov. 6, 1943 when the submarine, USS Cisco, failed to return from patrol operations in the Pacific area, has been presumed by the navy department to have occurred as of Jan. 8, 1946.

Details in connection with the action of the Cisco on the mission in which it failed to return and confirming the death of Halsten were given in a letter personally signed by Secretary of the Navy James Forrestal received Thursday by Mr. and Mrs. H. C. (Jack) Halsten, 2216 Delaware S. E., parents of Duane. The letter follows:

“Your son, Duane Herman Halsten, fireman 1/c, U. S. navy, has been carried on the official records of the navy department in the status of missing in action as of Nov. 6, 1943. He was serving on board the USS Cisco when that submarine failed to return from patrol operations in the Pacific area.

“At 7:30 a. m. on Sept. 19, 1943, the Cisco departed from Port Darwin, Australia to patrol the northern part of the south China sea. Following that patrol she was scheduled to arrive at Fremantle, Australia on Nov. 6, 1943. The Cisco was unreported after leaving Port Darwin, and to date no other information has been received by the navy department concerning the fate of the vessel or her crew.

“In view of the length of time that has now elapsed since your son was reported to be missing and because there have been no official nor unconfirmed reports that any of the personnel of the vessel survived or were taken prisoners of war, I am reluctantly forced to the conclusion that your son is deceased. In compliance with section 5 of public law 470, 77th congress, as amended, the death of your son is, for the purposes of termination of pay and allowances, settlements of accounts and payment of death gratuities, presumed to have occurred as of Jan. 8, 1946.

“I extend my deepest sympathy to you in your sorrow. It is hoped that you may find comfort in the knowledge that your son gave his life for his country upholding the highest traditions of the navy.”

The Halsten’s other son, Darrell, who has served in the navy for 5 years, has just arrived in the states from Leyte. He wrote that he had been assigned to a new ship, the USS Posidon, ARL. 12.

Source: The Globe Gazette, Mason City, Iowa, Friday, January 18, 1946, Page 11

NOTE: Submarine USS Cisco (SS-290) embarked on her first war patrol from Darwin, Australia on September 20, 1943. She never returned. It is believed that she was bombed and subsequently sank on September 28, based on Japanese records stating that a submarine leaking oil was sighted on that date in the area where the Cisco was the only submarine operating in that vicinity, the Sulu Sea west of Mindanao, Philippine Islands. Sources:
en.wikipedia.org/wiki/USS_Cisco_(SS-290; oneternalpatrol.com/halsten-d-h.htm