Frank Perconte

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Frank Perconte
Sgt frank perconte 506e.jpg
Nickname(s) Perco
Born (1917-03-10)March 10, 1917
Joliet, Illinois
Died October 24, 2013(2013-10-24) (aged 96)
Joliet, Illinois
Allegiance  United States of America
Service/branch Seal of the United States Department of War.png United States Army
Years of service 1942-1945
Rank US Army WWII T4C.svg Technician 4th Grade
Unit Easy Company, 2nd Battalion, 506th Parachute Infantry Regiment, 101st Airborne Division
Battles/wars

World War II

Awards
Spouse(s) Evelyn Welch (1942-2003; her death)
Relations Jack Perconte (nephew)
Other work Postman

Technician Fourth Grade Frank J. Perconte (March 10, 1917 – October 24, 2013)[2][3] was a non-commissioned officer during World War II with Easy Company, 2nd Battalion, 506th Parachute Infantry Regiment, 101st Airborne Division in the United States Army. He was portrayed by James Madio in the HBO/BBC miniseries Band of Brothers.

Youth[edit]

Perconte was born and raised in Joliet, Illinois. His parents were Joseph Perconte, who died in 1929, and Mary Carbone.[2] He was raised Catholic and attended parochial schools.[2] He graduated Joliet Central High School in 1935.[2] During the Great Depression, he and some of his friends moved to Gary, Indiana and worked in a steel mill.[2] He enlisted on August 17, 1942 in Chicago, Illinois[4] with childhood friend Herman Hanson, and, along with Wayne Sisk and Carwood Lipton, they were the first four soldiers assigned to Easy Company

Military service[edit]

Perconte was a non-commissioned officer in 1st Platoon. In 1942, while on leave from Toccoa, he married Evelyn and had a son named Richard.[5] He participated in the division's airborne assault on France on D-Day, and saw action during Operation Market Garden and the Battle of the Bulge. On Easy's assault on the town of Foy on January 13, 1945, he was shot in the thigh by a German sniper.[6] Frank was out for a couple of days before re-joining Easy at the town of Haguenau.

In late April 1945, Perconte along with Denver Randleman, and a few others were patrolling an area outside of Company E's headquarters, and along the way they discovered the Kaufering concentration camp in Landsberg, Germany.[7][8] Perconte ran back to headquarters and alerted Major Richard Winters.[7][8] Perconte and Winters were joined by the rest of Easy company on the trip back to the camp.[7][8]

Later years[edit]

Perconte was demobilized earlier than most of his counterparts as he was married and had a child.[9] He returned home to his family in Joliet and worked as a postman. His nephew, Jack Perconte, played major league baseball during the 1980s with the Los Angeles Dodgers, Cleveland Indians, Seattle Mariners, and Chicago White Sox.[2]

Perconte was one of 20 contributors to the 2009 book We Who Are Alive and Remain: Untold Stories from the Band of Brothers, published by Penguin / Berkley-Caliber. At the time of his death, he was the oldest living member of Easy Company, 2nd Battalion 506 PIR. He died on October 24, 2013 and is survived by his son Richard and two grandchildren.[10]

Awards and decorations[edit]

Combat Infantry Badge.svg Combat Infantryman Badge
US Army Airborne basic parachutist badge.gif Parachutist Badge
ArmyQualMarksmanBadgeHi.jpg Marksmanship Badge with Submachine gun and Pistol
ArmyOSB.jpg Five Overseas Service Bars (two and a half years overseas)
Ruptured duck pin.gif Honorable Service Lapel Pin
Bronze oak leaf cluster
Bronze Star with one oak leaf cluster
Purple Heart
Army Good Conduct Medal
Bronze oak leaf cluster
Bronze oak leaf cluster
Presidential Unit Citation with two oak leaf clusters (Normandy & Bastogne)
American Campaign Medal
Arrowhead
Bronze star
Bronze star
Bronze star
Bronze star
European-African-Middle Eastern Campaign Medal with four campaign stars and one arrowhead device
World War II Victory Medal
Army of Occupation Medal with Germany Clasp
Croix de Guerre with bronze palm leaf
French Liberation Medal
Commemorative awards
  • Commemorative D-Day Medal (60th Anniversary)
  • Commemorative D-Day Medal (50th Anniversary)
  • Commemorative Battle of the Bulge Medal
  • Commemorative French D-Day Medal
  • Combat Service Commemorative Medal
  • Austrian Liberation 50th Anniversary Medal
  • Victory in Europe Commemorative Medal
  • Commemorative World War II Medal

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ DeAngelis, Frank. "Perconte's shadowbox". Retrieved 2009-10-12. 
  2. ^ a b c d e f Brotherton, pp.8-9.
  3. ^ "Frank Perconte Obituary". The Herald-News. 25 October 2013. Retrieved 25 October 2013. 
  4. ^ WWII Army Enlistment Records: on-line NARA Archival Database
  5. ^ Bio of Perconte
  6. ^ Mini bio on Perconte on The Battle of Normandy website
  7. ^ a b c Ambrose, pp.262-263.
  8. ^ a b c Winters, p.214.
  9. ^ "Memorial Day visit with Joliet's Frank Perconte, the oldest living member of the Band of Brothers". chicagonow.com. May 28, 2012. 
  10. ^ "Joliet man was among 'band of brothers'". Chicago Tribune. October 26, 2013. 

Bibliography[edit]

  • Brotherton, Marcus (2009). We Who Are Alive and Remain: Untold Stories from The Band of Brothers. Berkley Caliber. ISBN 0-7434-6411-7. 
  • Ambrose, Stephen E. (1992). Band of Brothers: Easy Company, 506th Regiment, 101st Airborne from Normandy to Hitler's Eagle's Nest. Simon & Schuster. ISBN 978-0-7434-6411-6. 
  • Winters, Richard D., with Cole C. Kingseed (2006). Beyond Band of Brothers: The War Memoirs of Major Dick Winters. St. Martin's Press. ISBN 0-425-20813-3. 

External links[edit]