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SFC Ken Logue-Deceased
Christensen Jr, Frederick Joseph (WW II-ETO Fighter Ace), CPT.
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Home Town Massachusetts
Last Address Not Specified
Date of Passing Apr 04, 2006
Location of Interment Not Specified
Wall/Plot Coordinates Not Specified
Last Known Activity
Fred Christensen became a QUADRUPLE ACE in World War II, credited with shooting down 21.5 enemy aircraft, including SIX aerial victories in a single day on July 7, 1944.
Christensen flew 107 combat sorties with the 56th Fighter Group and used five different aircraft to record his victories, including two assigned as his personal aircraft:
P-47D-10-RE 42-75207 LM: C, named "Boche Buster" on the nose cowling and Rozzie Geth near the cockpit, and
P-47D-25-RE 42-26628 LM: C, named Miss Fire and Rozzie Geth II.("Rozzie Geth" was a diminutive of the name of a college girlfriend, Rosamand Gethro.)
Christensen's 21.5 officially credited kills rank him 12th among all Army Air Forces aces, 7th among aces of the Eighth Air Force, and 5th among P-47 aces.
While in England, Christensen adopted a stray black cat and named it Sinbad. He is reputed to have taken Sinbad with him on missions, carrying him in the cockpit of his P-47 as both a good luck charm and inspiration to his fellow pilots, then bringing the cat to the United States as a pet in September 1944 after the end of his tour. A family anecdote held that a war correspondent covering the 56th FG tried to photograph the cat, which kept jumping all over packed parachutes. All of the pilots using the gear returned safely, contributing to his legend.
The President of the United States of America, authorized by Act of Congress July 9, 1918, takes pleasure in presenting the Silver Star to First Lieutenant (Air Corps) Fred J. Christensen, Jr. (ASN: 0-774920), United States Army Air Forces, for gallantry in action, while piloting a P-47 fighter aircraft of the 62d Fighter Squadron, 56th Fighter Group, EIGHTH Air Force, on a bomber escort mission over Germany, on 20 February 1944. Just after the squadron which he was flying reached the limit of its range, Lieutenant Christensen observed a ME-109 preparing to attack the bombers. He immediately pursued the enemy plane, forcing it to break off the attack and dive for cover. Climbing to rejoin his flight he saw a BO-237 and another member of the flight destroyed it, despite a withering hail of fire from the hostile plane. Critically low on fuel and ammunition, Lieutenant Christensen again headed for home only to spot a JU-88 below him. Though still deep in enemy territory, he dove for the plane and holding his fire until dead astern, scored direct hits on both engines. As the enemy aircraft burst into flames and spun to the ground, Lieutenant Christensen set his course for England. His gallantry, skill and disregard for personal safety in zealously seeking out the enemy and destroying him contributed in a large measure to the safety of the bomber formation.
General Orders: Headquarters, 8th Air Force, General Orders No. 323 (April 29, 1944)