Francis E. Lewis

Picture of Frank Lewis FRANCIS E. (FRANK) LEWIS, born in Binghamton, N.Y., 29 June 1922 and joined the Army in 1942 for flight training in pursuits, graduating Class 44-B at Williams Field, Arizona. His ETO P-47 unit was the 406th Group, 514th Squadron, dive-bombing and strafing in support of Patton's Third Army. After 70 missions, he returned to the states on leave, but the war had just ended as he returned to Europe in May 1945. Not wishing to remain in the occupation force, he was assigned state-side duty at Kelly Field in 1946 and soon mustered out.

Four years of civilian life in San Antonio flying P-51 's with the Texas ANG and Lewis returned to active duty with the 36th FB Wing, 182nd FB Squadron, TANG, for Korean duty in 1950. Volunteering for combat duty early, he left that wing to join the 18th FB Wing at Pusan just in time for the big push to the Yalu River, flying Mustangs for a 100-mission tour.

He re-joined the 36th for a second tour in jet fighters, the F-84, and returned home after 35 more missions and one MIG-15 probable late in 1951. Assigned to strategic nuclear fighters in SAC, he flew F-84F's with the 12th Strat Fighter Wing at Bergstrom AFB for six years, marrying Merle Tooke, and fathering daughter, Kathy, before taking on an AFIT university program at the University of Texas.

A degree in executive management earned, he moved his new family to Westover AFB, there to fly the B-52 for six more years, with staff duty at 99th Bomb Wing and 57th Air Division as Director of Safety.

In 1965, the Lewis family, now augmented by son David, moved to Kirtland AFB, New Mexico, where his final assignment found Frank the Chief, Air Defense Branch of the Directorate of Nuclear Safety. Turning down an assignment to War College in favor of getting acquainted with and raising his kids, Lewis retired in 1967 with a Regular Air Force rank as Lieutenant Colonel, to take up civilian life in Austin.

Master's degrees earned by both Frank and Merle at The University of Texas took them to Maine, both to teach at the same high school while the children enjoyed the benefits of a low. pressure, small-town schooling. David graduating in 1981, the family will return to Austin for a second retirement, both parents to seek PhD's, Frank to research and write, and to manage their real estate in Texas and Maine, the family to divide their lives half and half between those two states.

List of all P47 Pilots:
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Pilot Name Biography Summary
John Abbotts P-47 transition followed at Pocatello, Idaho and Greenville, Texas after which he was assigned to the 56th Fighter Group in England. When the news of his arrival reached Berlin, Hitler retired to his bunker with his cyanide capsule and revolver. Eva found the news equally depressing.
Asa A. Adair He returned to the States in August of 1944 after participating in the invasion "D" Day. He flew P-63's, P-51's, F-80's, T-33's, F-84's, T-38's, P-47's in numerous assignments during the following twenty years in in, Japan, U.S.A. and Europe before retiring after twenty-six years of Active Duty.
Edward B. Addison The 507th Fighter Group, equipped with P-47N's, won the Presidential Unit Citation for destroying 32 Japanese aircraft in the air on one mission to Seoul, Korea. The average flying time for raids to Korea and Japan would be 7 to 9 hours flying time. In a total of 31 months, the 507th not only provided top cover for B-29's, but also dive-bombed, napalm-bombed and flew low-level on strafing missions.
Levon B. Agha-Zarian It is rumored that he, took his primary training on a flying rug. He flew Spits, briefly, in England, but as the, war moved to the East, he was sent to India as a Sgt. Pilot and first saw action from Ceylon, flying the Curtiss P.36, the Brewster Buffalo, and the Hurricane. At this point he might have opted for the rug! This was at the time of the fall of Singapore and the sinking of the Prince of Wales and the Repulse.
George N. Ahles Posted to A-20 light bomber squadron Barksdale Field, Louisiana. . Group moved to Hunter Air Base Savannah, Georgia. Qualified for Pilot training November 1940. Entered Aviation Cadets January 1942. Presented wings November 1942 class of 42-J. Married Mary Louise while in Advanced Pilot Training at Craig AFB, Selma, Alabama, September 1942.
Roy J. Aldritt Shortly after the group moved to France he ran into some unseen flak and was forced to make a nylon descent behind the lines; some evasion and a lot of luck had him back with his unit in 24 hours.
Eugene J. Amaral After graduation from Stonington High School he enlisted as an Aviation Cadet in December 1942 and was called to active duty in March, 1943. He received his wings and commission at Spence Field, Georgia as a member of the Class of 43-C.
Talmadge L. Ambrose Flew 84 missions thru VE Day, was downed by 22mm ground fire over Siefried Line. He destroyed 11 enemy aircraft, 9 known confirmed in air and on ground, including 4 FW 190-D's in one afternoon over Hanover, Germany, April 8, 1945. He was awarded the Distinguished Service Cross, Distinguished Flying Cross, Air Medal, 17 man, Oak Leaf Clusters, Good Conduct Medal, Pacific Theatre and European Theatre Meda1s with 5 Battle Stars and Unit Citation Medal.
John C. Anderson After P-47 transition he was assigned to the 406th Fighter Group, 512th Fighter Squadron. (E.T .0.) He flew 56 missions through January, 1945 destroying supply routes, bridges, and railroads; he also flew close support missions with the ground forces, with attacks on tanks, artillery and enemy positions.
William Anderson It was not always flak,two ME-109's beat the hell out of me one day. The central controller called me and said "Basher-Red Leader do you have contact Bandits," I replied, "I sure do, I'll bring them over the field in 3 minutes, they're chasing me home." Got all the usual medals including two Belgium and two French but one I'm most proud of is the Silver Star -it is the greatest.
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