American Red Cross Letter

Inter-Office Letter

Jan. 7, 1919

From: Capt. M.C. Cooper, Air Service, Am.E.F.
To: Capt. C.P. Williamson, Dist. Mgr.
Subject: Mrs. Clarkson Potter, 12 Ave. President Wilson, Paris, and Capt. M.C. Cooper, Air Service, formerly 20th Aero Squadron, have been enabled by the aid of the American Red Cross to obtain the following facts concerning missing Aviatiors:
10. Unidentified Aviator
This officer was killed at Murvaux (5 kilometers east of Dun-sur-Meuse) on Sunday, September 29, 1918. The Germans stripped him of all identification, but Captain McCormick of the 301st Graves Registration station at Fontains near Murvaux was so interested in the story told by the French people of Murvaux concerning the death of this aviator that he exhumed the body and stated that it was that of a man of medum height, heavy set and with light hair. On his wrist he found an Elgin watch #20225566, which was under the sleeve of his combination and which the Germans who had stripped him of all papers and identification marks had evidently missed. The village people of Murvaux told Captain McCormick that this aviator first shot down three German balloons and two German planes, then descended low over the ground and killed eleven Germans with either hand bombs or machine gun bullets. While flying low his plane was hit from the ground and he himself was apparantly wounded. He made a successful landing, got out of his plane and when the Germans called on him to surrender he replied by drawing his automatic and opening fire, thus standing he continued to defend himself until killed. The description of this aviator by Captain McCormick and the fact that Lieut. Frank Luke dropped a note to a balloon company that day stating he was going to shoot down the balloons which were shot down makes it almost certain that this officer was 2d Lieut. Frank Luke, Air Service, whose nearest relative is Frank Luke, 2200 West Monroe St., Phoenix, Arizona. If the Air Service wishes to check this case it is suggested that a representative of the Air Service be sent to Murvaux and obtain sworn statements from the French people of that village."

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