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Ken Frankish

 

Date and Place of Birth: Circa 1924 Mount Lawley, Western Australia
Date and Place of Death:    October 23, 1944 near Houghton Hall, Norfolk, England
Baseball Experience: Amateur
Position: Pitcher/Outfielder
Rank: Flight Sergeant
Military Unit: 460 Squadron Royal Australian Air Force
Area Served: European Theater of Operations

Kenneth T. "Ken" Frankish, son of Richard and Sylvia Frankish, was born at Mount Lawley, a suburb of Perth, Western Australia in 1924. He was educated at Mount Lawley and Perth Boys' Schools where he was outstanding in cricket and soccer, being selected for the Western Australia schoolboys' soccer team in 1938. Frankish, a left-hander, pitched and played the outfield for the Chevs Baseball Club, one of the first teams to be organized in Western Australia in the mid-1930s and comprising primarily of employees of Sydney Atkinson Motors,distributors of Chevrolet cars,hence the nickname. Pitching his first game for Chevs on June 1, 1941, Frankish shutout Mackays, 8-0, handing them their first defeat.

Frankish worked for the Lands Department before joining the Royal Australian Air Force at the age of 18, in 1942. Following training in Australia, he completed his training in England and served as an observer with an Avro Lancaster bomber crew of 460 Squadron. Flight Sergeant Frankish was flying his tenth mission over Essen, Germany, on October 23, 1944, when the Lancaster was hit by flak. Returning to England and flying at 20,000 feet, two engines seized on the bomber and it dropped out of the sky, struck a tree, near Houghton Hall, Norfolk, broke in two and exploded. Six of the seven crew members were killed instantly, including Ken Frankish.

Flight Sergeant Frankish is buried at Newmarket Road Cemetery in Cambridge, England.

Sources:
Perth Western Mail, May 30, 1940
Perth Daily News, June 2, 1941
Perth Daily News, June 4, 1941
Perth Daily News, July 16, 1941
Perth Western Mail, August 28, 1941
West Australian, October 31, 1944
Perth Daily News, December 20, 1944
Commonwealth War Graves Commission
Perth Baseball Club website
www.ozatwar.com

Date Added: June 23, 2013

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