Chester John (Chet) Dumask
American Legion Post 480 Oldest Continuous Charter Member
- Seaman 1st Class
- World War II
Seaman 1st Class Dumask was 17 years old when he enlisted in the US Navy, called up at age 18 and was stationed at Naval Station Treasure Island, San Francisco, CA toward the end of World War II. He along with seven other Presque Isle men decided to “enlist for the duration of the war”, an agreement with the war department that they would have no further military obligations following the war. Following his discharge, he hitchhiked from San Francisco to Chicago on all known conveyances, including a hay rack. Chet stayed with the USN Reserve until July 2, 1962.
Chet is a lifelong resident of Presque Isle, Wisconsin, a well-known storyteller, and keen observer of man and beast. Owner of Chet’s Hardware for many years, he retired to continue his love for the outdoors and to hunt and trap. One of his many stories tells of when he purchased a “lucky bag” on the naval base. The bags contained items left behind by sailors from their deployments. Chet’s bag contained a Japanese paper money bill. He was very surprised to see his brother Lambert’s name autographed on the bill, along with the date when he served with the Pacific Fleet. He keeps the bill in his collection.