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Francis  J.  Peck

 

Personal Legacy
FRANCIS J. PECK
World War II
Memories and Biography

(Taken from a letter to Will Lundy)

21 September 1988

2620 S. Lamonte St.
Spokane, WA 99203

Dear Editor (Will):

During my tour of duty in England, the following experience might be considered combat time.

While flying my missions, I made contact with a close buddy from my hometown (Stevens Point, WI), who was also stationed in England. After finishing my missions, we made arrangements to meet in London while on pass. I went to a Red Cross Club for quarters. In the morning, I was shockingly awakened, finding myself on the floor, being knocked out on the floor. After the cobwebs left my head, I dressed and went to the main desk. In inquired of a volunteer what happened and she replied, a V2 bomb landed in a park a block away. I walked to the park to investigate and observed a very large crater. It scared the hell out of me enough to take the first train back to Norwich. Needless to say, I didn't meet my buddy.

I wasn't about to hang around London and get killed by one of those bombs after finishing my missions unscathed.

Francis J. Peck

(Newton E. Condray's radio operator)





FRANCIS PECK
World War II
Memories and Biography

(Taken from a letter to Will Lundy)

December 22, 2002

Dear Will:

I received your letter in answer to mine, advising you about George Fraga [gunner/engineer].

You said you were a bit befuddled how I knew George. Our crew engineer Sylvester Cole and me were in a training group stationed at Clovis AB, New Mexico. George joined us in the summer of 1944. He had just returned from a tour in the CBI theater. We got to be friendly and I enjoyed listening to his experiences of his tour in the Far East. There were about a half dozen each of us engineers and radio operators. Instructors were replaced by crewmembers returning from their tours. I was an R.O. instructor. We were placed on crews that had no engineers or R.O. Cole and I were lucky to be placed with an experienced pilot, Newton Cowdray. Fraga volunteered to join a crew. I told him he was crazy.

Our crew joined the 44th, 67th squadron, a short time after d-Day. Fraga and his crew went to the 68th. We continued our friendship during our tour, went on pass together at times, etc. At that time Cameron was C.O. of our squadron, Lehnhousen C.O. of the 68th.

While in the states, I flew in both B-17s and B24s. At Grenier AB in New Hampshire, the crews picked up brand new 24s.

One night while there, there was a rather big contingent of 17 crews plus 24 crews, quartered in our barracks. A big flight with fisticuffs encrypted, about which was the better aircraft. I just laid in my bunk and took it all in. The M.P.s were called to break it up.
;
After discharge, George and I kept in touch by phone and letters, all those years. Hid D.O.B. is 6/25/0. I lost a very good friend.

Sincerely,

Francis Peck
 
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