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Francis Tierney Biography

Short biography written by his son, Thomas Tierney.

Francis was born outside of Missouri Valley, Iowa, graduated from high school there and then graduated from the University of Iowa with a degree in Economics.

He served in World War II and served as a navigator on a B17. Signed up December 8, 1941. August 16, 1943 he was over Reigensberg, Germany when a German Messerschmidt 109 fired a 20mm canon shell which passed through the plane without exploding but severed his right hand, with it only hanging by a small flap of skin. He continued to stay by his machine gun until forced down by other crew members and a tourniquet was applied. The plane flew on to Africa. During the flight he was accidentally given a double morphine injection, so when the plane landed he was unable to move but could hear what was going on. As he was unresponsive, the medics thought he was dead - but forced himself to speak and so lived. Afterwards he always celebrated this as "the day he lived". Following his recovery he continued in the Army Air Corps teaching navigation in Texas and after his disability discharge as a First Lieutenant, worked at the Omaha Glen Martin aircraft manufacturing company.

After the war he attended and graduated from law school at the University of Iowa. Francis moved to Fort Dodge and was a lawyer, state representative (for 2 terms), state Democratic chairman, county attorney, and judge in Fort Dodge, Iowa.

Owner/SourceThomas Francis Tierney
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