Chester C. Burns
Technical Sergeant
U. S. Army
WWII US Military
Dates of Service: 10/27/1940 - 10/14/1945
Telephone repairman/specialist., Signal Service Battalion

A midwife delivered Chester on the farm of his grandfather, Drew Matthews, in Sabine Parish. His parents were William Alfred Burns and Lenora Gladys Burns. Chester began helping on the farm when he was so young he had to reach up to hold the handles. Graduating from Pelican High School in 1939, he worked at a sawmill before enlisting in the U.S. Army in August of 1940. He was sent to San Antonio for basic training at Dodd Field where he was assigned to the 7th Signal Service Company and trained in signal and telephones. Chester operated a telephone switchboard at Fort Bliss in El Paso, and then took more training at a Bell Telephone facility in Chicago. He and two other men were sent to Trinidad, West Indies on June 19, 1942, where they installed a 1,400-line automatic telephone exchange for an army and air base. Meanwhile he married Ruby Richey. They had four children, six grandchildren, and two great-grandchildren. His next duty post was on St. Lucia where he worked on telephone equipment malfunctions. He was discharged at Camp Shelby near Hattiesburg, Mississippi, as a tech sergeant in the fall of 1945. Afterward he worked for the Bell Company for 37 years, retiring in 1983.