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Chauncey Renaldo Frank
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Birth: Oct. 9, 1893
San Francisco
San Francisco County
California, USA
Death: Oct. 4, 1918, France

Company C, 363rd Infantry Regiment
91st Division, A.E.F., WWI

San Francisco Examiner, November 17, 1918

"Don't Worry, Mother," Wrote Soldier Slain

Corporal Chauncey R. Frank Sent Cheerful Letter Before He Fell in Argonne

"Don't worry about me, mother, I am always in the best of spirits and the best of health. Never worry about me." So wrote Corporal Chauncey Rinaldo [sic] Frank, only son of Mr. and Mrs. A.G. Frank of 1416 Clay Street, just before he died, fighting with the 363d Infantry, of the famous 91st Division, at Argonne Forest on October 4.

The first news of the death of Corporal Frank came in a letter from his comrade, Corporal Philip Katz, who wrote to his mother, Mrs. Virginia Katz, 71 Parker Avenue, under the date of October 6: "You may already have heard of the death of Chauncey Frank, but I thought it would comfort his mother and friends to know that he was always in the front, where the fighting was thickest. He is buried on a little knoll here, overlooking the ground he fought so hard to gain and hold.

Frank was prominent in athletics during his student days at Wilmerding and Lowell high schools, where he was a member of the Theta Chi fraternity. He was later with the John D. Spreckels & Brothers Company and in the circulation department of "The Examiner." In September, 1916, he sailed as a cadet aboard the American ship William P. Frye, the first American vessel to be sunk by German submarines.

Upon his return he was selected in the first draft contingent from San Francisco, consisting of 196 men, who were feted by the city and presented with service buttons by Mayor Rolph September 4, 1917, going to Camp Lewis the following day. He was with the 91st Division on its tour through Canada last June, just before sailing for France.

In all his recent letters Corporal Frank predicted an early end to the war, saying he would surely be home soon and would eat his Christmas dinner in his native city, San Francisco.

He was engaged to Miss Muriel E. Cosgrove, a school-day sweetheart, whom he was to have married at the close of the war.

Oakland Tribune, November 3, 1921

Honor Is Paid To War Mother of S.F.

Mrs. Cynthia Shaw, 2405 Larkin Street, has been officially accredited by the War Department and will have a seat among the honored war mothers on Armistice Day in the Arlington National Amphitheater during the ceremony of burying the unidentified American soldier. She is in receipt of a letter from the War Department stating that the body of her son Chauncey R. Frank, killed in action in France, was never recovered. According to official records she is the only California mother the body of whose soldier son was never found.

Oakland Tribune, November 3, 1921

S.F. Mother to Attend Funeral of Unknown Hero

Mrs. Cynthia Shaw, whose son, Chauncey R. Frank, was killed in the Argonne while fighting with the American forces, and whose body was never recovered, is to leave Saturday for Washington to occupy a place of honor in the Arlington Cemetery ceremonies at the interment there of America's unknown warrior, on Armistice Day, it was announced here today.

Mrs. Shaw will be a guest of the War Department. Frank was killed by shell fire and although a thorough search was made for his body, it was never located. Before going into the the army he was a member of the crew of the William D. Frye, one of the American ships torpedoed by the Germans.

Oakland Tribune, December 1, 1921

Treatment of War Mothers Criticized

Gold Star War Mothers in attendance upon the burial ceremonies for the unknown her in Arlington Cemetery were heartbroken at the lack of courtesy with which they were treated, according to Mrs. Cynthia M. Shaw, Gold Star mother from California, speaking at a luncheon given yesterday in her honor by the San Francisco War Mothers in Native Sons Hall.

According to Mrs. Shaw, the War Department made no provision for the entertainment or comfort of the Gold Star Mothers, and the entire delegation except herself and Mrs. McCudden, English Gold Star Mother, was forced to walk the five miles to the cemetery, arriving too late to enter. They were kept waiting outside until the ceremonies were over.

Through the courtesy of Congressman Charles Curry, Mrs. Shaw declared she was properly looked out for and given a cared to the disarmament conference. She had an audience with President Harding and Mrs. Harding.

Oakland Tribune June 14, 1925

Corporal to Have Military Funeral

With full military honors, the body of Corporal Chauncey Renaldo Frank, son of Mrs. Cynthia Shaw, 8300 Laguna Street, will be buried at the Presidio next Sunday. The remains arrived yesterday on the transport Chateau Thierry. Frank was a member of the 363d infantry.

Oakland Tribune, June 22, 1925


A military cortege stopped beneath a low cypress tree. An Army chaplain dropped rose leaves into a freshly dug grave and spoke: "Since the sould of comrade has departed this life, we therefore commit his body to the ground." A mother, white handkerchief to her eyes and contrasting with her dress of black, stood near. A group of overseas former service men stood with bared and bowed heads. A color guard of two overseas sergeants held aloft the Stars and Striped and the colors of the 30th infantry with the riband of the Croix de Guerre. A former A.E.F. lieutenant spoke, a brief sermon was preached. A salute, taps.


Thus was buried in the Presidio San Francisco, yesterday the body of the last American soldier to be returned from France. It is also the last which will be returned; the rest will remain in the country where they died.

The soldier to whose memory honor was paid was Corporal Chauncey Renaldo Frank, a high school boy in this city before he enlisted and went overseas for service with the 91st Division. His mother, Mrs. Cynthia Shaw, during seven long years had about given up hope of the body of her son being found. He was killed in action in the Argonne, October 4, 1918, and his body was recently discovered. She had journeyed to Arlington when the Unknown Soldier was brought back for burial. "It might be my son," she said. The father, A.G. Frank, was also in attendance at the funeral.

Episcopal rites for the dead were read during the conventional service in the little vine-covered chapel in the Presidio, the beautiful green and hilly military reservation overlooking Golden Gate, before the flag-covered casket was transported on a black caisson to the burial ground, which is becoming the Arlington Cemetery of the West Coast. The real funeral service was held in the open, where more of the boy's buddies could attend.


Twenty of these comrades were there, together with a platoon of fresh recruits as a guard of honor, members of the American Legion and a squad of Boy Scouts, clad in khaki and carrying the flag and banner of the Argonne school.

An overseas chaplain preached the sermon over the grave and a life-long friend of the boy spoke briefly before the final salute was fired.

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Family links: 
  Augustus G Frank (1867 - 1933)
  Cynthia M Butts Shaw (1870 - 1933)
Note: Co. C 363rd Infantry, 91st Division
San Francisco National Cemetery
San Francisco
San Francisco County
California, USA
Plot: WS, 221-A
Maintained by: Wild West Division
Originally Created by: US Veterans Affairs Offi...
Record added: Mar 04, 2000
Find A Grave Memorial# 3527081
Chauncey Renaldo Frank
Added by: Wild West Division
Chauncey Renaldo Frank
Added by: Carol
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Remembering and Honoring another brave soul lost to us almost a century ago, now, in the "Great One". Rest, at Peace, with your Loved Ones in Heaven. With respect from Oregon,
- Kathie L. Webb Blair
 Added: May. 30, 2016
Rest well in Paradise, where there are no Wars and your Soul can be at Peace for Eternity. Thank you for serving our nation during "The Great One", the "War to End All Wars"; how I wish that could have been true. With Respect from Oregon,
- Kathie L. Webb Blair
 Added: Dec. 14, 2015

- Wild West Division
 Added: Dec. 6, 2015
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