Sarris 7

Frank Sarris

Frank J. Sarris was born on December 8, 1917, in Newport, Rhode Island, in the USA. His parents were Greek immigrants, John Sarris and Maria Lafiotis, both originally from the beautiful island of Skiathos. Frank's father first arrived in the USA between 1900 and 1905 to obtain American citizenship. To achieve this, John Sarris volunteered for the U.S. Army during World War I, serving in France with the 6th Engineer Regiment before returning injured to the USA. In November 1915, he married Maria in Providence, Rhode Island, and later, after moving to Newport, they had four children: Rose (1916), Frank (1917), Koula (1919), and George (1922). Frank enlisted in the Rhode Island National Guard and served three years before being discharged. He then reenlisted in the National Guard for another four months before joining the U.S. Navy on November 1, 1939, as a "Seaman Apprentice" with a prospect of six years of service. In January 1940, he was assigned to the aircraft carrier USS Ranger (CV-4), where the impressive sight of aircraft taking off and landing on the flight deck profoundly influenced young Frank. Due to the needs of the war, the Navy's requirements were reduced from the required two years of college or university studies, allowing Frank to apply for pilot training. On January 5, 1943, he reported to Pre-Flight Training School at the Naval Air Station in Athens, Georgia. On October 12, 1943, after completing all tests, Frank was designated an "Aviation Pilot 1st Class" and a few days later...

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Greek Version

Sarris 1
USN, F6F-5 BuNo xxxxx, VF-37, USS Sangamon
Stargu 9

John Stargu

Born in Clayton, N.J. on Feb. 29, 1924, John Stargu was the son of the late George and Despina (Moshovos) Stargu. According to his son, Nick, the original name was Stergiou but the authorities in Ellis Island wrote it as Stargu. George's heritage was from Mykonos Island while Despina was from Samos Island, both in the Aegean Archipelago. John graduated from Bloomfield High School and was employed by Danaher Ford and M&E Ford.  During WWII he enlisted in the United States Army Air Force (USAAF) and trained as a Flight Engineer and Top turret gunner in the B-24 Liberators. He met his crew during their joint training in Pueblo Air Force Base in Colorado, in January 1943, his captain was Robert Blair. One interesting note is that the crew's tail gunner was named Vlachos, almost certainly another Greek American. When their training was over, they were assigned for service in the Mediterranean Theater of Operations (MTO) specifically the 451st Bomb Group, based in Italy. The whole crew went to Herrington in Kansas in order to deliver a new bomber equipped with radar. According to Blair before their journey to Europe, the bombardier and three gunners were sent by boat while the rest of the crew along with two radar engineers and spare parts, however when they arrived in Italy, they never...


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Greek Version



Stargu 1
USAAF, B-24H-1-FO, 42-7697, The Stork, 720 BS, 450 BG, Manduria Airfield, Italy, 1944

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