North High School Wall of Honor
Frank D. Sprague
Class of June, 1938
Died; FOD; Finding of Death
1938: Frank D. Sprague
Research done by Rick Nehrling, class of 1963.
Frank D. Sprague
Frank was a member of North High's class of June, 1938. His serial number was 0-725319. His death was reported as FOD, Finding of Death. At the time of his death, his rank was 1st Lt - First Lieutenant. Awards are the Air Medal and Purple Heart.

Information obtained from the American Battle Monuments Commission shows that Frank died on December 19, 1945 as a member of the 31st Bomber Squadron, *5th Bomber Group, Heavy. He is listed on the Tablets of the Missing at the Manila American Cemetery, Manila, Philippines.
31st Bomber Squadron:
On 1 April 1931, the redesignated 31st Bombardment Squadron was activated at March Field, California. The 31st left for Hickam Field, Hawaii on 1 February 1938, becoming the first bombardment unit to be based there.On 7 December 1941, the Japanese attacked Pearl Harbor and Hickam Field, and all of the squadron's B-18 Bolo bomber aircraft were either damaged or destroyed. Refitted with B-17 heavy bombers, the squadron was assigned to the 7th Air Force and relocated to Kipapa Gulch, Oahu. During the course of the War, the 31st took part in numerous battles in the Pacific campaign, including the Battle of Midway, as well as the Solomon Islands campaign, Bougainville Campaign, New Guinea Campaign, Operation Hailstone, Philippines Campaign, and Borneo Campaign.

5th Bomber Group:

On 7 December 1941, the 5th Bombardment Group suffered the loss of B-17 Flying Fortress and B-18 Bolo bombers when the Japanese attacked Pearl Harbor, but it sent two B-17s to search vainly for the Japanese task force. After the attack, the group patrolled the waters off the Hawaiian Islands until November 1942, taking part in the Battle of Midway (3–6 June 1942). Active for over 60 years, the 5 BW was a component wing of Strategic Air Command's heavy bomber deterrent force throughout the Cold War.

Frank D. Sprague
First Lieutenant
31st Bomber Squadron
5th Bomber Group, Heavy
United States Army Air Forces

Frank D. Sprague

31st Bomber Squadron

1st Lieutenant Bar
Purple Heart, Air Medal

Purple Heart; Air Medal

The above information was obtained from the following:
(1) The World War II Honor List of Dead and Missing Army and Army Air Forces Personnel were created by the War Department, the Adjutant General's Office, Administrative Services Division, Strength Accounting Branch. The original records are held at the Modern Military records LICON, Textural Services Division (NWCTM), National Archives at College Park, Maryland.
The documents contain the latest and most complete information available of all Army and Army Air Force personnel who were killed or died, or became and remained missing between the President's declaration of unlimited national emergency on May 27, 1941, and the cut-off date of this report, January 31, 1946. This document includes both battle and nonbattle dead and missing. The records are available online at

The type of casualty is indicated by the following:

    * KIA - Killed in Action. This is an individual who was killed in action at the front, by enemy action in the rear, or if a prisoner of war.
    * DOW - Died of Wounds. This is an individual was who wounded and later died.
    * DOI - This is an individual who suffered fatal battle injuries and died in a line of duty status.
    *DNB - Died Nonbattle. This is an individual who died in a line of duty death, such as from sickness, homicide, suicide, or accidents outside of combat areas (training).
    *M - Missing. This is an individual who is reported as missing and later was determined to be dead.
    *FOD - Finding of Death. Findings of death fall within Public Law 490 and its amendments and are made when there is either conclusive proof that the person is dead or equally overwhelming evidence that under the circumstances the person could not have remained alive.

This document contains the names of those individuals who died in the line of duty status. Those individuals who were not in the line of duty at the time of their death are not listed in this document.

(2) The American Battle Monuments Commission was established in 1923 to commemorate the service, achievements, and sacrifice of US Armed Forces. There are 24 overseas cemeteries that serve as the final resting place for almost 125,000 American war dead. The servicemen and women are listed on tablets of the missing that memorialize these men and women. These records can be found online at

(3) The comprehensive list of names from North High's 1893-2018 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: Frank D. Sprague's 1938 class page is:

Died: December 19, 1945; FOD; Finding of Death.
Music: "Wind Beneath My Wings"
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