PFC Frank H. Wiegand
34th Inf. 24th Div. Co. B
Killed in Action 9 May, 1945
near Bancal, Mindanao, in the Philippines
-- Father of: Dianne (Wiegand) Baczynski, Michael T. Wiegand, and Patrick F. Wiegand --
My dad was born December 17, 1910, in Appleton, Wisconsin. He was the only
boy in the family along with six sisters. The one remaining sister is my Aunt
Eunice, who is now 89 years young!! He married my mom in January 1936, that
union produced five children, in eight years!!.... My dad was 34 years old when
he was drafted into the army, older than most of the other comrades he fought
side by side with.... and was called "Papa" by them, because of the five
children he had waiting for him at home!! He had another nickname of "Gody"
that the family called him, but whether his buddies called him that, I don't
I have very few memories of my father, and this confuses me, as I was nine
years old when he died.....I had a packet of letters that he wrote me and I
remember him telling me in many of them to "take care of your mother." since I
was the oldest. I have, and I am....
When I was younger I would look for his face as I remembered from one of the few
pictures we have of him....could it be, I thought, that he didn't really die, and
was out there somewhere, in a crowd, on the street?
My Mom says he was very well liked by everyone, he had a great sense of humor
and was always willing to help someone in need. When I visited my Aunt, she told
me that a day never goes by that she doesn't think of him....I believe that is
so true with myself, too.
Father James Moran, the Infantry Chaplain wrote to us, "Frank was a good man, a good
catholic and faithful to his religion, and received communion on Easter Sunday."
1st Lt. Russell V. Pyle writes, "You have the deepest sympathy of the officers
and men of this company in your bereavement, as Frank was held in high regard by
all members of this organization, he was a splendid soldier and his many friends
feel his loss deeply."
PFC Bob Barron wrote, "Frank had many, many friends there, they held him in very
high esteem, they all loved him and were deeply saddened by their comrade's death."
(they collected money and sent it to my mom)
PFC Thomas Thompson wrote, "Frank was my best friend overseas."
When he left to be inducted in June of 1944, he went first to Fort Sheridan,
Illinois, from there to Basic Training at Ft. Wolters, Texas , in Co.D, 54th
Bn.Inf. Tng. He wasn't planning to go overseas, but after basic he felt he
wanted to do his share and volunteered! What a guy!! We think he probably
went overseas in the Fall of '44., from Camp Roberts, California.
We are not quite sure of his path from then until May of '45, but my mom
remembers sending him his birthday card and a little Filipino girl asked if
she could have the blue ribbon from his card, so he must have been there in
On May 9th, my dad was hauling ammunition and rations to his company area
about 1,000 yards North of the city of Bancal, Mindanao, when this barrage of
mortar fire was landing right in the vicinity of his jeep. He left the jeep,
along with his driver, to seek protection on the side of the road. It was
while he was running from the jeep to the road that he was shot in the back
several times by a Japanese sniper, and instantly killed.
My mom said in the personal things sent home of his, his wallet was missing, and
she regretted that, as she knew he carried pictures of us in it!
He was then buried in the U.S. Armed Forces Cemetery in the city of Taloma, Mindanao,
and today his final resting place is in the Manila American Cemetery, The Philippines.
My husband and I visited that resting place in 1970...the cemetery is beautifully
maintained by the Army so that was comforting to me. My brother Mike also got to visit
the cemetery while he was in the Marines in the 60's.
I will end this tribute to the "daddy" I never really knew, but always loved......
This saying has always been one of my favorites, and now I know why......
SOME PEOPLE COME
INTO OUR LIVES
AND QUICKLY GO...
SOME PEOPLE STAY
ON OUR HEARTS...
AND WE ARE NEVER,
EVER THE SAME .
The footprints are on my heart forever....