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Collin W Fritz Jr


Prisoner of War (POW) Shot down on 9/11/44 in B-17 Down And Go #4337541 at Oberatsteunach

Newton (IA) Daily News, Wednesday, November 10, 2004

PEORIA, Ariz. -- Collin W. Fritz, 83, died from complications of a stroke suffered two years ago.

Memorial services were held Oct. 31, 2004, at Sun City Congregational Church in Peoria, Ariz. Memorial contributions may be made to the Sun City Congregational Church.

Mr. Fritz was born in Des Moines and attended Hanawalt, Roosevelt Junior and Senior High, Grinnell College, Drake University Law School and the University of Wisconsin School of Banking. Joining the Jasper County Bank, he used his law experience serving as vice president and board member at the bank.

He was a member of Sun City Congregational Church in Peoria, Ariz., where he was an active member and a moderator, among other responsibilities. He chaired the Jasper County Republican Party and was moderator of the Newton Congregational Church. He was also appointed by Charles Hunter on a committee to plan the Hunter addition to Skiff Hospital. He was awarded the Kiwanis Club's Outstanding Young Businessman award and was president of the Newton Country Club. He served on Gov. Ray's committee for the revision of the uniform commercial code. He was Chamber of Commerce president, received the distinguished award and was also a member of the Industrial Development Committee and the Community Chest.

He accepted the appointment of superintendent of banking for the State of Iowa, and the family moved to Des Moines. He continued his banking career as president of Central National Bank in Des Moines. He later served through Rotary and as president of Wakonda Country Club. He formed C.W. Fritz Banking Consultant and Collin W. Fritz and Associates in Brainerd, Minn. The Fritzs moved to Arizona in 1991.

During his time in the service, Mr. Fritz flew 26 missions over Germany before being "shot down." As the plane lost power, the men prepared to bail out. They all made it safely except Mr. Fritz; he landed in a 25-foot tree in the Black Forest. He was free for almost a week before he was captured and finally taken to a prison on the Baltic Sea, where 10,000 flying officers were housed.

Surviving are his wife, Jeanne; children, Collin Martin Fritz of Honolulu, Hawaii, Mary Susan Ralph of San Marino, Calif., Anne Catherine Fritz of Tampa, Fla., and Margaret Elizabeth Evenson of Minneapolis, Minn.; and nine grandchildren.


Units served with

  • 447th Bomb Group

    447th Bomb Group

    The 447th Bomb Group flew B-17 Flying Fortresses on strategic bombardment missions out of Rattlesden, Suffolk. With their first mission coming on Christmas Eve, December 24, 1943, their main focus was hitting sites that would weaken enemy forces...

  • 710th Bomb Squadron


Event Location Date
Born Des Moines, Iowa


Date Contributor Update
08 November 2016 20:34:07 Yorkshireman Changes to biography

Hutchinson & Cortright

Date Contributor Update
27 September 2014 18:06:37 AAM AAM ingest

Drawn from the records of the National Museum of the Mighty Eighth Air Force, Savannah, Georgia / Unit History Roster as of 01 August 1945/MACR 8923