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Capt Frank E. DeBottis

Capt Frank E. DeBottis

Death 12 Nov 1944 (aged 25)
Burial Arlington, Arlington County, Virginia, USA
Plot Section 34 Site 4922
Memorial ID 15086386 · View Source
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Frank's brother went to Italy after the war and found Frank's remains.

A native of Syracuse, Capt. DeBottis was an athletic star at North High School where he not only played football, but captained the baseball team. On account of this athletic prowess, he won a scholarship to Mt. Mary College in Maryland.

DEBOTTIS, FRANK E, O792233, AAF, CAPT, 11/12/1944
B-24 piloted by Capt. Frank E. DeBottis. Capt. DeBottis was not flying this mission with his regular crew as they were all on leave or in the hospital, with the exception of his Co-Pilot, 1st Lt. Donald G. Stubbs. Since Capt. DeBottis was assigned to fly "Group Lead" on this mission, his replacement crew was made up of experienced airmen as this was T/Sgt. Miles' 34th mission.

Just as the B-24 reached the bomb release point, it was struck with a direct burst of flank, shearing the tail section off of the aircraft. It was last seen in an inverted position diving to the ground. No one made it out of the aircraft. The story of this crew doesn't end with their deaths in November 1944. Twelve years later, Capt. DeBottis' brother traveled to Italy to search for his brother's body, which were never recovered, in May 1956. In digging near the crash site with the help of locals and the American Battle Monuments Commission, the cockpit of the plane was discovered along with the partial remains of 6 members of the crew who were not recovered by the Germans immediately after the crash. All were returned to the United States.

Above Bio by: Joe DeBottis

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Additions to the above story:

Frank was the husband of Florence F. DeBottis who resided in Syracuse, New York.

Captain Frank E. DeBottis was the mission commander of a bomber group on a mission from Lecce, Italy to bomb the Avisio Viaduct near Trento, Italy. As the mission commander he did not pilot the plane but commanded the entire group of B-24's on the mission from the cockpit.

This B-24 was piloted by Captain Theodore S. Lehmann shown below who was under the command of Captain DeBottis.

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Airmen who perished on B-24L #44-49041:

Cobb, Dana W ~ S/Sgt, Gunner, NH
Bubnovich, Nicholas L ~ 1st Lt, Bombardier, IN
DeBottis, Frank E ~ Capt, Mission Commander, NY
Harnish, Walter H ~ 1st Lt, Mission Navigator, NY
Hennessey, Raymond C ~ T/Sgt, Engineer, NY
Lehmann, Theodore S ~ Capt, Pilot, MD
Miles, Alan D ~ T/Sgt, Radio Operator, MI
Mulhollen, Donald N ~ 1st Lt, Mission Bombardier, PA
Robinson, John A ~ 1st Lt, Navigator, PA
Roosa, Robert D ~ S/Sgt, Gunner, OH
Stubbs, Donald G ~ 1st Lt, Co-Pilot, IA
Young, Wayne A ~ S/Sgt, Gunner, MI

Bio Additions & Crew Report by:
Russell S. "Russ" Pickett

Special thanks to:
Hope for submitting this record for bio updates!


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  • Maintained by: Russ Pickett
  • Originally Created by: Hope
  • Added: 30 Jul 2006
  • Find A Grave Memorial 15086386
  • Find A Grave, database and images ( : accessed ), memorial page for Capt Frank E. DeBottis (17 Mar 1919–12 Nov 1944), Find A Grave Memorial no. 15086386, citing Arlington National Cemetery, Arlington, Arlington County, Virginia, USA ; Maintained by Russ Pickett (contributor 46575736) .