December 27, 1919 (Norwalk, CT) – December 9, 2001 (Norwalk, CT); 81 years old
Married to Winifred Reece (1923-1998) on November 8, 1947 in Norwalk, CT
Last local address: 26 Prospect Street, Norwalk
Enlisted on September 10, 1942
Service number 11095117
Unit: 78th Infantry Division, 310th Infantry Regiment, 2nd Battalion, Headquarters Company
Captured December 16, 1944, Battle of the Bulge, Kesternick, Germany. Held in German POW camp Stalag 4B Muhlberg Sachsen 51-13. Liberated on April 28, 1945, returned to the U.S. May 29, 1945 and discharged December 9, 1945.
From The Norwalk Hour January 21, 1944
Fort Benning, GA – Private First Class Edward W. Franke, son of John Franke of 32 Center Avenue, Norwalk, Connecticut has been graduated from the Enlisted Communication Course of The Infantry School. During his course here he was attached to the First Student Training Regiment, commanded by Colonel Robert H. Lord. Private First Class Franke enlisted in the Army at Fort Devens, Massachusetts, and was given his basic training at Fort McClellan, Alabama.
From The Norwalk Hour June 5, 1945
T-5 Edward W. Franke, who has been a prisoner of war in Germany, was liberated on April 28, and arrived home on May 29, to spend a 60-day furlough. Franke, a member of the 78th Lightning Division of the 1st Army, was taken captive on December 16, 1`944 in the Ardennes Bulge. He has received two stars for participating in two campaigns and also has been awarded the Presidential Unit Citation and the Good Conduct Medal. During the internment in Germany, he met two Norwalk fellows, Corporal Alex Bellus of Flax Hill Road and Sergeant George Lang of Newtown Avenue, the latter also arrived home at the same time. Corporal Bellus is expected to return in a few days. T-5 Franke highly praises the work of the American Red Cross for all they have done for our boys in combat zones. He is the son of John Franke and resides at the home of his sister, Mrs. Elizabeth Marron of 19 Harbor Avenue. His brother, Andrew, a member of the 43rd Division, has been stationed in various parts of the Pacific area since September 1942.
Buried in Riverside Cemetery, Riverside Avenue, Norwalk; Section 9 North