North High School Wall of Honor
Thomas Walter Fries
Received diploma for June, 1945? graduation
Research done by Claradell Shedd, Class of 1953. PAGE IN PROGRESS
Thomas Walter Fries

Thomas enlisted (or was drafted?) in the US Navy in 1944. His service number was 3219052. Thomas's next of kin was listed as Mr. and Mrs. George L. Fries, 3619 5th Avenue, Des Moines, IA. The entries below will be substituted for the correct information, when received, for Thomas Walter Fries.

Thomas Walter Fries
Year   Rank   Status
bef 1944 North High School Left North High to enlist in US Navy. Received GED diploma for June, 1945 later.
January 3, 1944 x Enlisted in US Navy/Rank x Old Federal Building, Des Moines, IA
date x Boot camp x Naval Training Station, Camp Farragut, ID. Twelve weeks. Navy 311; Navy 24
date x Training x Where and when? Indianapolia Naval Trade School; Radioman.
1944 x Enroute x Where and when?
March 11,1944-
January 3, 1946
x Enroute x USS Bottineau (?) Hunters Point Shipyard (also known as Treasure Island), Sub Group One, RFC Station, San Francisco, CA
Pearl Harbor, Saipan, Okinawa
March 6, 1946-
March 8, 1947
x Enroute? x Where and when and aboard what vessel?
Sept.9, 1947? x US Navy/Rank x Discharged from US Navy
Sept.9, 1947? x US Navy Reserves x Joined US Navy Reserves in Des Moines, IA.?
May 2, 1949 US Navy Reserves Separation from US Navy Reserves
date x Schooling/employment x Schooling and/or employment? Where and when?
February 3, 1954
x Family x Married Mary Geraldine Fitzgerald at All Saints Catholic Church, Des Moines, IA
date x appropriate x appropriate
date x appropriate x appropriate
Present x Civilian x Des Moines, IA.
June 5, 2018 x Deceased x Iowa Veterans Home, Marshalltown, IA
June 13, 2018 x Deceased x Burial at Iowa Veterans Cemetery, Van Meter, IA
Enlisted at Old Federal Building, Des Moines Naval Training Station, Farragut, ID
USO Club; Farragut, ID Married to Mary Geraldine Fitzgerald
February 3, 1954; Des Moines, IA
Thomas Walter Fries Thomas Walter Fries
Correct photos of Thomas Walter Fries coming
USS Bottineau (APA-235)
Awards, Citations and Campaign Ribbons for USS Bottineau, APA-235
Precedence of awards is from top to bottom, left to right
Top Row - American Campaign Medal - Asiatic-Pacific Campaign Medal (1)
Bottom Row - World War II Victory Medal - Navy Occupation Service Medal (with Asia or Europe clasp) - National Defense Service Medal
USS Bottineau, APA-235, a Haskell-class attack transport
USS Bottineau (APA-235) was a Haskell-class attack transport that saw service with the US Navy in World War II.
Bottineau was named after Bottineau County, North Dakota. She was launched on 22 November 1944 by Kaiser Shipbuilding of Vancouver, Washington, under a Maritime Commission contract; transferred to the Navy 30 December, and commissioned the same day, Captain H. B. Edgar in command.

Reporting to the Pacific Fleet, Bottineau carried a cargo of ammunition to Pearl Harbor during March 1945. Departing Pearl Harbor 9 April she carried replacement troops to Saipan, Marianas Islands, and evacuated casualties from Okinawa before returning to the United States on 10 June 1945. She then carried replacement troops to the Philippines and returned to Pearl Harbor to prepare for the invasion of Japan.

Following the Japanese surrender she landed elements of the 98th Division at Wakayama, Honshu, Japan, 1 October 1945. Bottineau departed 6 October for Guam and returned to the United States with Pacific veterans, arriving at Seattle, Washington, 26 January 1946. Between February and May 1946 Bottineau operated between San Francisco and San Diego. Departing San Pedro, California, 25 May 1946, she arrived at Bikini Atoll 6 June 1946 where she acted as a transport for the target vessel boarding teams during Operation Crossroads, designed to test the effectiveness of atomic bombs on warships. Over 200 warships participated in the operation, 75 of them as targets.. Following theatomic bomb tests, she returned to San Francisco, arriving 21 August. She was placed out of commission in reserve there 8 March 1947.

Recommissioned 24 March 1951, Bottineau served with Amphibious Forces, Pacific Fleet, until August when she steamed to Norfolk, VA, arriving 4 September. Bottineau served with the Atlantic Fleet, taking part in amphibious training exercises and other routeine peacetime duties, until going out of commission at Philadelphia 31 August 1955. For her World War II service, Bottineau received on e battle star.
Thomas Walter Fries
Rank? Duty?
Navy Group
United States Navy

US Navy Seal

US Navy Insignia

Thomas Walter Fries

correct patches coming

3rd Class Radioman

2nd Class Radioman

American Campaign; Victory Medal; Navy Expeditionary Medal; United National Service Medal/Korea; Korean War Medal

Examples: American Campaign medal awarded ship in 1942;
Victory Medal; Navy Expeditionary Medal;
United Nations Service Medal/Korea; Korean War Medal
Update medals: Asian Pacific (1 star); American Area; Navy Reserve Medal;
Victory WWII Medal; Good Conduct Medal, Honorable Service Lapel Button
(1) Information was obtained from the Records on Military Personnel Who Died, were Missing in Action, or Prisoners of War as a result of the Vietnam War. This document can be found online at the National Archives and Records Administration at

(2) The comprehensive list of names from North High's 1893-2019 graduation classes are from Claradell Shedd's North Des Moines High School website. The names of North High School graduates can be found online at: Thomas Walter Fries's 1945 class page is:
2014: Living in Des Moines, IA. Died 06/05/18.
Music: "Anchors Aweigh"
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