Parsons, Charles Thomas, CDR

 Service Photo   Service Details
41 kb
View Time Line
Last Rank
Primary Unit
1943-1945, Commander South Pacific Area and South Pacific Force (COMSOPAC)
Service Years
1932 - 1948
Foreign Language(s)

 Last Photo   Personal Details 

Home State
Year of Birth
This Military Service Page was created/owned by Kent Weekly (SS/DSV) (DBF), EMCS to remember Parsons, Charles Thomas (Philippine Guerilla), CDR.

If you knew or served with this Sailor and have additional information or photos to support this Page, please leave a message for the Page Administrator(s) HERE.
Contact Info
Home Town
Shelbyville, TN
Last Address

Date of Passing
May 12, 1988
Location of Interment
Not Specified
Wall/Plot Coordinates
Not Specified

 Official Badges 

 Unofficial Badges 

 Military Association Memberships
American Ex-POW Association
  0, American Ex-POW Association [Verified] - Assoc. Page

 Additional Information
Last Known Activity

The American-born Parsons had lived in the Philippines since 1902. He was a successful businessman who was fluent in several native dialects and knew the Islands and their people like a book. In 1932, Parsons joined the U. S. Navy Reserves. In December 1941, he was called to active duty in Manila as a lieutenant in Naval Intelligence. In his successful business career, he served as Honorary Panamanian Consul in Manila. The Japanese did not discover his Naval Intelligence connection. After a period of internment at Santo Tomas, they permitted him to leave with his family in June 1942 because of his Panamanian diplomatic status. After a journey from Manila to Takao to Shanghai to Mozambique to Africa, the Parsons reached New York City on August 12, 1942. In short order, Parsons reported to the Navy Department Headquarters in Washington, D.C., where his presence came as a surprise because he had been listed as "missing in action." He presented a lengthy written report to officials there covering in great detail Japanese activities in the Islands since their fall. It is during this period that General MacArthur's request appeared for Parsons's presence at Brisbane. Naval Intelligence, Army Intelligence, and the FBI were loath to let this valuable source of information go, but after some negotiations, the General got his way.

Parsons reported to Brisbane in early January 1943 and was assigned to the Allied Intelligence Bureau (AIB). He was put in charge of a project to establish teleradio units in guerrilla forces across the Islands and to strengthen and unify guerrilla leadership so they met standards established by General MacArthur and became cohesive warfare units. To accomplish this project, Parsons would have to return clandestinely to the Islands, a requirement he welcomed. He would become MacArthur's "Man in Manila."

Other Comments:

Also awarded the Philippine Medal of Valor 
For conspicuously by gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of life above and beyond the call of duty."

This award is equivalent to the US Medal of Honor

Commander Parsons was the man that General Douglas MacArthur called "The bravest man he had ever known."
 Photo Album   (More...

 Ribbon Bar

 Unit Assignments/ Advancement Schools
Commander Navy Reserve Forces Command (COMNAVRESFORCOM)Office of Naval Intelligence (ONI)Prisoner of WarCNO - OPNAV
US Navy
  1932-1941, Commander Navy Reserve Forces Command (COMNAVRESFORCOM)
  1941-1942, Office of Naval Intelligence (ONI)
  1942-1942, Prisoner of War
  1942-1942, CNO - OPNAV
  1942-1943, CNO - OPNAV
  1943-1945, Commander South Pacific Area and South Pacific Force (COMSOPAC)
 Combat and Non-Combat Operations
  1941-1942 Philippine Islands Campaign (1941-42)/Battle of the Philippines
  1943-1943 USS Narwhal (SS-167)
  1944-1944 USS Narwhal (SS-167)
  1944-1944 World War II/Asiatic-Pacific Theater/Leyte Campaign (1944)
  1944-1945 World War II/Asiatic-Pacific Theater/Luzon Campaign (1944-45)
  1944-1945 World War II/Asiatic-Pacific Theater/Luzon Campaign (1944-45)
  1944-1945 World War II/Asiatic-Pacific Theater/Luzon Campaign (1944-45)
  1945-1945 Luzon Campaign (1944-45)/Invasion of Lingayen Gulf
  1945-1945 Luzon Campaign (1944-45)/Battle of Corregidor
Copyright Inc 2003-2011