|Military Awards and Decorations
Purple Heart, Army Good Conduct, European-African-Middle Eastern with 3 campaign stars (Rhineland, Ardennes, Central Europe) Presidential Unit Citation
Sgt Francis arrived in the European Theater on 9 December 1944 and was assigned as a replacement in Company K, 120th Infantry, 30th Infantry Division. Shortly thereafter his unit was inserted into the Ardennes to help stop the advance of German troops during the "Battle of the Bulge." His unit marched through the Baugnez Crossroads on their way to the front, and passed the site of the "Malmedy Massacre" that happened days before. While separated from his unit, he was briefly captured along with some other men by elements of the 2nd SS Panzer Division. At one time during his interrogation by an SS officer, he managed to effect an escape by killing the officer after the SS man turned his back to him. He spent the next few days finding his way back to Allied lines. He continued fighting with his unit through to the end of the war, and received wounds from enemy artillery on 26 March, 1945, after which he was sent to an Evacuation hospital for treatment. He returned to the US on 21 August 1945, and was demobilized on 26 October 1945.
He was a native of Sauk Centre Minnesota.