Wall of Honor Location:
Foil: 13 Panel: 2 Column: 3 Line: 99
Wall of Honor Level:
Air and Space Friend
Mr. Gary Fladmark
Oscar Randolph Fladmark, Jr. was born in Moe Township, Lincoln County, South Dakota on June 23, 1922 to Scandinavian immigrants Oscar Sr. and Pethryn. Oscar Fladmark, Sr. came from Alesund, Norway as an immigrant and Pethryn (Hanson) Fladmark was originally from Hudson, South Dakota also, of Norwegian heritage. Oscar Fladmark, Sr. had served with General John Pershing in World War I. Oscar attended school in Canton, South Dakota and was active in sports and became captain of his high school football team. Later, the family relocated to Sioux Falls, South Dakota, while there he attended Augustana College in the 1940s.
During World War II, Oscar R. Fladmark, Jr. was chosen an aviation cadet and to undergo training with the United States Army Air Corp. He trained at various military bases located in California, Arizona, Texas, Florida and Virginia. He was inducted in June 1942 and was commissioned a Second Lieutenant and received his Wings in the United States Army Air Corps in April 1943. He was transferred to the European Theater of Operations (ETO) in England on August 20, 1943 for Active Duty with the 8th Air Force. Lt. O.R. Fladmark flew combat mission strikes over Munich, Saarbrucken, Regensburg, Schweinfurt, Ebelsbach, Neuaubing, Hanover, Normandy, Mery, Oise River, Sens. St. Ouen and Genevilliers near Paris. Oscar completed a total of 64 combat missions over Nazi Germany and received The Air Medal with 10 Oak Leaf Clusters. After the tour of duty he was transferred to the United States on January 24, 1945. He was stationed in Santa Ana, California until war's end. Captain Fladmark was discharged from the U.S. Army Air Corp. in 1945 and relocated to Sioux Falls, South Dakota. After WWII, Oscar Fladmark continued his education at Augustana College and also flew with Professor Robert Branson's flying aerobatic team of Flandreau, South Dakota.
In 1946, Oscar R. Fladmark, Jr. was appointed to the rank of Captain and the duty of a Flight Commander with the Air National Guard 175th Fighter Squadron based in Sioux Falls, South Dakota. Oscar completed his Bachelor Arts Degree at Augustana College in Sioux Falls, South Dakota in 1948. He also worked for the local newspaper the Argus Leader.
Oscar R. Fladmark, Jr. married Phyllis Peterson on November 13, 1950 at First Lutheran Church in Sioux Falls, South Dakota. Captain Oscar Fladmark was recalled into the Air Force on November 14, 1950 for training in jet fighters and a tour in the Korean War. In February 1951, Captain Oscar Fladmark was assigned to the 35th Fighter-Interceptor Wing which was reactivated by Colonel Frederick Gray. The 35th Fighter-Interceptor Wing was a component of the 5th Air Force, Far East Forces. During the Korean War he had flown 100 combat missions over North Korea. Captain Oscar R. Fladmark, Jr. received the Distinguished Flying Cross for action in April of 1951, his 35th mission, during the Korean War. He received this for leading a flight of four F51 fighters on a close aerial support mission which involved flying repeated passes in inclement weather in hazardous terrain, impeding the enemy drive in Hwachon area.
Captain Oscar R. Fladmark, Jr. was stationed with the 85th Fighter Interceptor Group at Belleville, Illinois in September 1951. While there a (son) Gary L. Fladmark was born. Later he was transferred to the 326th Fighter Interceptor Group located at Grandview, Missouri in June 1954. While there a (daughter) Vicki L. Fladmark was born. In 1954, Captain Oscar R. Fladmark, Jr. was given an award for exceeding the Speed of Sound in a F86 Sabre Fighter Jet by North American Aviation of Inglewood, California.
Major Fladmark, Sioux Falls pilot who had flown 164 combat missions during World War II and the Korean War without injury, was killed July 27, 1955 in a one-car accident near Yuma, Arizona. Major Oscar R. Fladmark, Jr.'s memorial service in 1955, where he was given Full Military Honors, was second largest in the church history. He had a high profile reference in several Newspaper articles (Kansas City Star) and Associated Press (Argus Leader). The Memorial Service included several officials presiding in attendance (South Dakota Governor, Military & Business Officials) along with a formation of Four Fighter Planes in the Missing Man Formation Flyover.