View Full Version : Joe Basso "Navy Cross" WW2

07-12-07, 06:12 AM
Joe Basso, Decorated WW2 Marine Dies July 12, 2007

Joseph Basso, a World War II veteran who was awarded two Purple Hearts and the Navy Cross for rescuing
a wounded soldier from an attack, died Monday of kidney and liver complications. He was 85,

Family members described him as a devoted father with a youthful spirit who rarely missed one of his six sons' football games. "He was always a kid at heart," said son Steven Basso, 50, of Lake Ronkonkoma

From 1942 to 1945, Basso served as a Marine squad leader and demolition expert in four major campaigns in the Pacific theater, the son said. On July 24, 1944, Basso, then a private first class, was stationed at an outpost in Guam with a soldier when Japanese forces ambushed them. According to his Navy Cross citation, Basso was captured and taken to enemy territory. He escaped, then found his comrade and took him back to American lines, for which he earned the Navy Cross.

Basso also saw action in Iwo Jima, Guadalcanal and Papua New Guinea, receiving the Purple Hearts for injuries he suffered in battle. Family members said Basso was proud of his military service but hesitated to talk about wartime experiences until late in his life.

Joseph Guy Basso was born on June 9, 1922, in Manhattan and grew up in Williamsburg.

In 1946, one year after his return from the Pacific, Basso married Arline Hausler. The couple settled in Westbury in 1955, where they lived for 35 years.

Basso worked as an inspector and maintenance supervisor for Kollsman Co., a commercial and defense aircraft company based in Syosset, for more than two decades. In 1973, he took a job in Lake Success with Were Associates, a property management company. He worked there as a supervisor and manager until he retired in 1984.

In 1990, he and his wife moved to Vero Beach, Fla. They returned to Long Island in 2001 after Basso was diagnosed with colon cancer.

In addition to his wife, of Ronkonkoma, and son Steven, he is survived by sons Robert Basso, 60, of Patchogue; Thomas Basso, 57, of Seaford; Joseph Basso, 55, of Hicksville; Guy Basso, 52, of Carle Place; and Peter Basso, 48, of Hicksville; 12 grandchildren; and one great-granddaughter.

A funeral service will be held at 10 a.m. today at Donohue Cecere Funeral Directors, 290 Post Ave. in Westbury. Burial will be in Calverton National Cemetery in Calverton.

07-12-07, 06:25 AM


07-12-07, 07:27 AM
Private First Class, U.S. Marine Corps (Reserve)
Company B, 1st Battalion, 21st Marines, 3d Marine Division
Date of Action: July 24, 1944
The Navy Cross is presented to Joseph G. Basso, Private First Class, U.S. Marine Corps (Reserve), for extraordinary heroism while serving as a Fire Group Leader of Company B, First Battalion, Twenty-First Marines, Third Marine Division, during operations against enemy Japanese forces on Guam, Marianas Islands, 24 July 1944. Manning an outpost at night accompanied by only one comrade, Private First Class Basso was suddenly and ferociously attacked by numerous Japanese who delivered a heavy barrage of hand grenades and small-arms fire. Electing to engage the hostile force at his post, he emptied the magazine of his Browning Automatic Rifle into their fanatical assault. When overpowered by the onrushing enemy while changing magazines, and dragged three hundred yards into hostile territory, Private First Class Basso struggled fiercely and accomplished his escape. Searching for his wounded comrade, he located the casualty and brought him back into our own lines. When the position was retaken the following day, fifteen Japanese dead were counted near the outpost Private First Class Basso and his comrade had occupied. By his indomitable fighting spirit, courageous initiative and fortitude, Private First Class Basso was directly instrumental in bringing effective fire to bear on the enemy, thereby upholding the highest traditions of the United States Naval Service.