World War I
(September 9, 1881 - February 5, 1918)
World War II
(Unknown - August 9, 1942)
World War II
(January 21, 1917 - February 16, 1944)
World War II
(February 10, 1919 – June 10, 1944)
World War II
(May 3, 1919 – July 21, 1944)
World War II
(January 22, 1922 – November 29, 1944)
World War II
(August 31, 1920 – April 28, 1945)
(July 19, 1932 – December 23, 1950)
(January 5, 1947 - October 1, 1967)
(February 21, 1980 – December 4, 2004)
(July 25, 1986 – February 10, 2009)
In 1918, Private James F. Sparkman was headed to England to join the fighting underway during the Great War. He was 26 years old when he died on Feb. 5, 1918, when the British troopship S.S. Tuscania sank. It was the first ship carrying American troops to be sunk during World War I, and Private Sparkman was the first Collin County resident killed in action. Private Sparkman is buried at Arlington National Cemetery.
Seaman Richard Lloyd Bolton was serving aboard the cruiser USS Quincy when the Quincy and other American ships exchanged heavy fire with Japanese cruisers during the Battle of Savo Island. Although the Americans lost four ships that day, the Quincy sustained many direct hits and ultimately sank after being struck by torpedoes. Seaman Bolton was among the 370 Quincy crewmen who lost their lives on Aug. 9, 1942.
Private Cecil Cleveland Waldrum was assigned to the 1st Special Service Force. He was killed in action February 16, 1944 in the Battle of Anzio, Italy. Private Waldrum is buried at Fort Sam Houston National Cemetery in San Antonio, Texas.
The Allies D-Day invasion of France began on June 6, 1944. Just four days later, Technical Sergeant Mabron Paul Johnson was the top turret gunner in the Little Shepard B-24 Liberator. While on a bombing mission targeting a German occupied airfield, the plane was shot down. Five of the crew members were taken prisoner, while four others, including TSgt Johnson, were killed in the crash. Sergeant Johnson’s brother, Corporal Kenneth Johnson, also served during the war.
One of 10 children, 25-year-old Sgt Oren Ralph Hill was killed on July 21, 1944, during the second Battle of Guam. While the battle lasted more than two weeks before the Americans took the island, U.S. losses amounted to 1,744, compared to 18,250 Japanese deaths. Also serving in the war, was Sergeant Hill’s brother, Army Private Neville Hill.
After deploying overseas in 1943, Private Lee Harold Derryberry’s 1st Cavalry Division engaged in heavy fighting across the rugged mountainous terrain of Leyte Island in the Philippines. The 22-year-old was killed in action on Nov. 29, 1944, during a battle to push deeper into the Leyte Valley. Capturing the island cost American forces more than 15,000 men. Private Derryberry’s survivors include a brother, Private James Derryberry, and sister, Second Lieutenant Ollie Derryberry. Another brother, Captain Jerral Derryberry, was killed in a non-combat B-17 crash in 1943.
The Battle of Okinawa was one of the largest and bloodiest American battles of the war. It began on April 1, 1945, with an island assault by more than 180,000 American soldiers and Marines. During the 82-day battle, U.S. combat losses totaled 458 airplanes, 38 ships and 4,900 sailors killed, with more than 7,600 ground troops. Private First-Class Sidney Gordon Duncan Jr. was a 24-year-old medic when he was killed on April 28, 1945. He was posthumously awarded a Bronze Star for his actions on Okinawa. His brothers, Norman and Thomas Duncan, also served in the Pacific during World War II. Lt. Colonel Norman Duncan’s awards included a Silver Star and two Bronze Stars, while Thomas Duncan was a Bronze Star recipient. Their grandfather, Sidney Duncan, served as Frisco’s first postmaster.
During the three years of the Korean War that began in 1950, more than 55,000 American soldiers died. Corporal Kenneth Jack Hill was killed in action on Dec. 23, 1950, during combat operations fighting the Chinese communist and North Korean forces near the Imjin River in South Korea. He was just 18 years old and had arrived in Korea roughly one year earlier. He was survived by his parents, three sisters and a brother.
Corporal Robert Ray Brown grew up during a time of change for Frisco, and the nation. The first 8 years of his schooling, he attended the segregated Hamilton School. For his first two years of high school, Robert was bussed to the Frederick Douglass School in Plano. When Frisco schools desegregated in 1964, Robert attended Frisco High School where he lettered in football and was a member of Future Farmers of America. Robert graduated from Frisco High School in 1966. By July, he was registered in the U. S. Army. He served in Germany for one year before being sent to Vietnam where he was assigned as a mortar man with B Company, 4th Battalion, 47th Infantry Regiment, 9th Infantry Division. He was killed in action on October 1, 1967 in the Mekong River Delta in an area called Rung Sat Special Zone just three weeks after arriving in Vietnam. CPL Brown was 20 years old at the time of his death. Due to confusion regarding his home of record, which is listed as Plano, and his ties to Frisco, having graduated from FHS just before enlisting, Corporal Robert Ray Brown’s name was inadvertently omitted from Frisco’s KIA Memorial Wall in Frisco Commons. This error was corrected in 2016 when Corporal Brown’s name was added to the memorial and his ultimate sacrifice gratefully acknowledged by the Frisco community. His portrait is displayed in the Collin County Court House as part of the Collin County Fallen Warriors Portrait Project. Corporal Brown is buried at Lincoln Memorial Park in Dallas, Texas.
At the young age of 17, Sergeant Michael Luke Boatright joined the U.S. Army National Guard. After 9/11, he signed up for active duty and planned to make the Army his career. At the age of 24, this true Texan, who loved riding bulls, listening to country music, fishing and hunting deer, was killed in action on Dec. 4, 2004, by an improvised explosive device in Baghdad, Iraq. According to his mother, “He loved being a soldier and took his Army values very seriously — loyalty, duty, respect, selfless service, honor, integrity and personal courage.” He left behind a wife and three children.
Corporal Peter John Courcy was killed in action on Feb. 10, 2009, by a vehicle-borne improvised explosive device in Afghanistan. He was just two weeks away from returning home to his wife and infant son. Since childhood, 22-year-old Corporal Courcy had always wanted to join the military. He was a standout hockey player, wrestler and team leadership student at Frisco High School. In 2013, the entrance road to Frisco Commons Park was named in honor of Corporal Courcy. In February 2014, American Legion Post No. 178 was named and dedicated in Corporal Courcy's honor.