2nd Lt. David A. Beach
National Geographic Article - October 1953
Beach is listed as the Navigator
David Alexander Beach was born January 2, 1922, at Harrah, OK to John W. Beach and Cora D. (Anderson) Beach. He passed away August 9, 2008, at Wenatchee, WA.
His younger years were spent in Oklahoma and Texas, before moving to Washington with his family in the early 1930's. Following his graduation from Wenatchee High School in 1940, he worked as an optician for Doctor Thomas, a local optometrist. His interests included motorcycles, hiking and outdoor activities.
In 1942, he joined the Army Air Force. He became a navigator and served on B-24s in Italy during World War II. A week before his deployment to Italy, he married his hometown sweetheart, Dorothy Pedersen, June 8, 1944, at Boise, ID, where he was stationed. While stationed at Newfoundland, he received special recognition when he was chosen to be the navigator for the first flight over the North Pole. The flight took place in May 1953. It was commissioned by The National Geographic Society and an article and pictures were in the October 1953 magazine. David continued his service in the USAF until he retired as a Lt. Colonel in 1965.
Following his retirement, David and Dottie moved to Leavenworth, where they built their dream home in a beautiful forest setting. He enjoyed hiking the mountains around the valley. In 1994, they moved to Wenatchee, residing there until his death.
He is survived by his beloved wife of 64 years, Dorothy Beach; daughter, Sharon (Scott) Olson in Alaska; son, David Michael Beach in Florida; grandchildren, Jackie Hilton and Jeffrey (Heather) Mullin; and great-grandchildren, Alexa and Andrea Mullin. Also surviving are his brother, Jack (Lynn) Boushay; and sister, Wanda (Richard) Wertz of Omak. He was preceded in death by his parents; sister, Gladys Beach Brook; and brother, Johnny L. Beach. At David's request, there will be no Funeral Service.
Link To Crew Information
Information courtesy of Jim Smallwood, son of Fred Smallwood, 723rd Squadron