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117th Infantry Regiment

1st Battalion

"Curlew"

Commanding Officer

General Robert E. Frankland, 2-Star General, early 60's just before retirement.

I was fortunate enough to be contacted by Leila Frankland, grand daughter of the 30th's commander:

I hope you don't mind me bragging, but my granddad retired has a highly decorated Major General. He was up for his third star but retired. He has been written up in two books that I know of about  W.W.II. He had 2 Bronze & 2 Silver stars, the Infantry Combat pin, and several others that I don't know the name of. He was a very humble man and didn't want to talk about the war much. We would find out facts about him from other people or soldiers that were under him. Our family knew two of his aides and they would tell us the most amazing stories. One was about two soldiers being captured by the Germans and were walking through the streets of St. Barthelemy. My grandfather saw them from his post and killed the Germans. The Americans got away safely. Another story  they were marching to some town in the snow & cold and their was a young soldier getting really tired. My granddad went back of the line sat him down and they talked (and I'm sure it was a pep talk) for a while and they journeyed on. I could go on & on.
 
One on my fondest family memories is when my grandparents would take all nine of the grandchildren to the beach for two weeks. They would rent a condo and every morning before breakfast we had inspection of our rooms. Our beds had to be perfectly made, our flip-flops lined just right, and we had to stand attention at our beds. (6 boys & 3 girls) He would flip a quarter on our beds to see if the sheets were tight enough!! Then we could play the rest of the day. The second week my dad came down and granddad had to go back to run the family business. When "The General" was flying back he almost missed his flight and they held the plane getting ready to go down the runway. He flashed all his credentials and a maintenance truck took him to the plane. I would have loved to have been at the airport seeing that!!
 
My granddad was only 5'7" (his father was 5'5") small, but a gentle giant & tough. He was a community leader and was well loved and respected in our town. Everyone called him the "General". About ten years ago they named our Armory for him. His picture has always hung in the lobby of the building.

Leila Frankland

After Action Reports about the Mortain action of the 1st Battalion, 117th....Adobe PDF file.

Sketch of battle area from after action report...left click to enlarge. 

From Mark Reardon's "Victory at Mortain".

1:50,000  1943 map of area.  Left click on all maps to enlarge.