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Frank Edward Valesh

Military

Accident on 26 November 1943 unofficial slow-time flight in B-17 42-31035 'Hang the Expense'.
Landed at RAF Eastchurch, Kent with extensive flak damage to the tail upon the return from an operational mission on 24 Jan 1944 in B-17G 42-39867 'Hang the Expense II'. RTD.

Awards: DFC (2OLC), AM (4OLC), WWII Victory, EAME (3 battle stars).

The 100th BG web site had this to say:
FRANK VALESH, KNOWN TO MOST 100TH VETERANS AS 'BIG FRANK', IS A LARGER THAN LIFE FIGURE IN THE HISTORY OF THE 100TH.

UNIVERSALLY ADMIRED BY THE 100TH, HE WAS ACCORDING TO CAPT BILL CARLETON, 351ST ENGINEER OFFICER AND FRIEND OF VALESH, 'A MAN WHO LIVED EVERY SECOND OF LIFE TO THE FULLEST EXTENT'. OFTEN CALLED THE 100TH'S MOST EXHILARATING PILOT HIS DEATH IN 1984 IS DEEPLY MOURNED BY THE 100TH VETERANS, RECALLING HIM BRINGS WARM MEMORIES.

Service

People

  • Louis Black

    Military | Staff Sergeant | Ball Turret Gunner | 100th Bomb Group
    Assigned to 351BS, 100BG, 8AF USAAF. Frank Valesh crew on B-17 'Hang the Expense'. ETD Awards: DFC, AM (3OLC), WWII Victory, EAME.

  • John Booth

    Military | First Lieutenant | Co-pilot | 100th Bomb Group
    Assigned to 351BS, 100BG, 8AF USAAF. Frank Valesh crew. After mission on 24-Jan-44 in B-17G 42-39867 'Hang the Expense'; landed at RAF Eastchurch, Kent with extensive flak damage to the tail. RTD. Awards: DFC, AM, WWII Victory, EAME

  • Herschel Broyles

    Military | Staff Sergeant | Right Waist Gunner | 100th Bomb Group
    Assigned to 351BS, 100BG, 8AF USAAF. Frank Valesh crew. After mission on 24-Jan-44 in B-17G 42-39867 'Hang the Expense'; landed at RAF Eastchurch, Kent with extensive flak damage to the tail. RTD. Awards: DFC, AM, WWII Victory, EAME.

  • Andrew Campion

    Military | Major | Navigator | 100th Bomb Group
    Assigned to 351BS, 100BG, 8AF USAAF. Frank Valesh crew. Accident on 26-Nov-43 unofficial slow-time flight in B17 42-31035 "Hang the Expense" along with Lt Andrew Campion and Big Frank Valesh. RTD ...

  • Paul Carbone

    Military | Staff Sergeant | Left Waist Gunner | 100th Bomb Group
    Assigned to 351BS, 100BG, 8AF USAAF. After mission on 24-Jan-44 in B-17G 42-39867 'Hang the Expense'; landed at RAF Eastchurch, Kent with extensive flak damage to the tail. RTD. Awards: DFC, AM, WWII Victory, EAME.

  • Russell Flack

    Military | First Lieutenant | Co-Pilot | 100th Bomb Group
    Assigned to 351BS, 100BG, 8AF USAAF. Accident on 26-Nov-43 unofficial slow-time flight in B17 42-31035 "Hang the Expense" along with Lt Andrew Campion and Big Frank Valesh. RTD Awards: DFC, AM, WWII Victory, EAME.

  • John Johnson

    Military | Captain | Navigator | 100th Bomb Group
    Assigned to 351BS, 100BG, 8AF USAAF. Frank Valesh crew. After mission on 24-Jan-44 in B-17G 42-39867 'Hang the Expense'; landed at RAF Eastchurch, Kent with extensive flak damage to the tail. RTD. ...

  • Ernest Jordan

    Military | Staff Sergeant | Radio Operator Gunner | 100th Bomb Group
    Assigned to 351BS, 100BG, 8AF USAAF. Valesh crew on B-17 'Hang The Expense'. ETD Awards: DFC, AM, WWII Victory, EAME.

  • John Mytko

    Military | Technical Sergeant | Top Turret Gunner; Engineer | 100th Bomb Group
    Assigned to 351BS, 100BG, 8AF USAAF. Valesh crew on 'Hang the Expense'. Awards: DFC, AM, WWII Victory, EAME.

  • Roy Urich

    Military | Staff Sergeant | Tail Gunner | 100th Bomb Group
    Assigned to 351BS, 100BG, 8AF USAAF. Failed to Return (FTR) Frankfurt in B-17 42-39867 'Hang the Expense II'; blown out of A/C and seriously injured when 88mm flak explosion damaged the tail. 24-Jan-44. Prisoner of War (POW). ...

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Units served with

  • 8th Air Force

    8th Air Force


    Eighth Air Force Bomber Command became the Eighth Air Force on February 1944, it oversaw bombardment of strategic targets in Europe until 1945. ...

  • 100th Bomb Group

    100th Bomb Group

    Group
    "The Bloody Hundredth", so-called because of a reputation for losing a high number aircraft and crews, flew B-17s from Thorpe Abbotts, Norfolk. Their losses were not the highest of any Eighth Air Force Group but on several occasions the Group lost many...

  • 351st Bomb Squadron

Aircraft

  • 42-31035 Hang The Expense

    B-17 Flying Fortress
    Delivered Dallas 7/9/43; Scott 5/10/43; Assigned 351BS/100BG [EP-E] Thorpe Abbotts 8/10/43; unofficial test flight 26//11/43 with Frank E. Valesh, Co-pilot: Russell J. Flack, Navigator: Andrew H. Campion and two American Red Cross nurses, Mary J. Cooke...

  • 42-39867 'Hang the Expense II', ' Boeing Belle'

    B-17 Flying Fortress
    B-17G #42-39867 'Hang the Expense II' aka 'Boeing Belle'. ...

  • 42-97560 Hang The Expense IV

    B-17 Flying Fortress
    "Delivered Denver 21/12/43; Lincoln 18/1/44; Mitchell 31/1/44; Assigned 100BG Thorpe Abbotts 3/2/44; transferred (H2X) 413BS/96BG [MZ-H] Snetterton 4/2/44; landing accident with Frank E. Valesh (100BG); Salvaged 19/5/55. HANG THE EXPENSE IV." ...

Associated Place

  • Thorpe Abbotts

    Military site : airfield
    Home of the 'Bloody Hundredth’, a Bomb Group with a reputation for high casualty rates, Thorpe Abbotts was under USAAF control from June 1943 to the end of the war. Some of the airfield survives today, and the control tower houses the 100th Bomb Group...

Events

Event Location Date
Born Graceville, MN 15 April 1920

Son of Frank Morgan and Alice Valesh.

Enlisted Minneapolis, MN 25 March 1942

Minneapolis, Minnesota

Based Thorpe Abbotts 1943 – 1944

Assigned to 351BS, 100BG, 8AF USAAF.

Discharged USAAF 10 November 1945

Honourable discharge.

Died Star Prairie, WI 21 May 1984
Buried Fort Snelling National Cemetery, Minneapolis, MN 24 May 1984

Fort Snelling National Cemetery
Minneapolis, Hennepin County, Minnesota

Revisions

Date Contributor Update
27 May 2020 20:41:57 Al_Skiff Changes to middlename, service number, highest rank, biography, awards, events, person associations and unit associations
Sources

https://www.fold3.com/image/616913134
https://www.fold3.com/image/215636713
https://www.fold3.com/record/63506058-frank-valesh
https://www.fold3.com/record/84602694-frank-e-valesh
https://www.fold3.com/record/528154460-frank-valesh-1920
https://www.findagrave.com/memorial/3512130/frank-e-valesh

Date Contributor Update
22 January 2020 05:36:58 jmoore43 Changes to nickname
Sources

Added the nickname mentioned in his Summary biography.

Date Contributor Update
22 January 2020 05:32:17 jmoore43 Changes to biography
Sources

Added spaces to the "Summary biography" for clarity.

Date Contributor Update
28 November 2017 13:30:53 Lucy May Changes to biography and place associations
Sources

Drawn from the records of the National Museum of the Mighty Eighth Air Force, Savannah, Georgia / Losses of 8th & 9th AFs Vol I by Bishop & Hey pp. 388

Date Contributor Update
27 September 2014 18:10:00 AAM AAM ingest
Sources

AccidentReports.com, Losses of the 8th & 9th Air Forces / Drawn from the records of the National Museum of the Mighty Eighth Air Force, Savannah, Georgia

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