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Ensign Frank M. Upton, USNRF, (1896-1962)

Frank Monroe Upton was born on 29 April 1896 in Loveland, Colorado. He enlisted in the U.S. Navy from that state and served as a Quartermaster on the destroyer Stewart during World War I. On 17 April 1918, while his ship was serving on escort duty in Quiberon Bay, France, the nearby American steamship Florence H suffered an internal explosion. Though the sea in the vicinity was covered by exploding boxes of smokeless powder, Upton dove into the water and rescued an exhausted survivor. For his "extraordinary heroism" on this occasion, he was awarded the Medal of Honor.

In December 1918, Upton was commissioned as an Ensign in the Naval Auxiliary Reserve Force. Upon completion of his military service, Upton became an officer in the U.S. Merchant Marine. In January 1926, while serving as a Fourth Mate of the U.S. passenger liner President Roosevelt, he participated in the rescue of the crew of the British freighter Antinoe, which was breaking up in the North Atlantic. Upton, along with the others involved, were awarded the King George V Gallantry at Sea Medal by the British Government and were given a ticker-tape parade in New York City. During World War II, as master of a merchant ship, he voyaged to Murmansk, Russia, the Persian Gulf, and West Europe, and took part in the 6 June 1944 D-Day Landings at Normandy. After his Merchant Marine service, he relocated to Boulder, Colorado and operated a motel. Frank M. Upton died on 25 June 1962 and is buried at Arlington National Cemetery, Arlington, Virginia.

This page features selected views concerning Frank M. Upton.

For a presentation on another USS Stewart Sailor who also received the Medal of Honor for rescuing survivors of the S.S. Florence H., see Chief Steward Jesse W. Covington, USN (Retired), (1889-1966).


Click on the photograph to prompt a larger view of the image.

Photo #: NH 79447

Quartermaster Frank M. Upton, USN


Halftone reproduction of a photograph, copied from the official publication "Medal of Honor, 1861-1949, The Navy", page 126.
Quartermaster Upton, of USS Stewart, received the Medal of Honor for "extraordinary heroism" on 17 April 1918 when he risked his life while rescuing an exhausted survivor of the explosion of the American S.S. Florence H.

U.S. Naval History & Heritage Command photograph

Online Image: 74KB; 590 x 765 pixels

 
Photo #: NH 105342

U.S. Navy Medal Of Honor


Obverse of a Medal of Honor awarded to Quartermaster Frank M. Upton, of USS Stewart, for "extraordinary heroism" when he risked his life while rescuing an exhausted survivor of the explosion of the American S.S. Florence H on 17 April 1918.
See Photo # NH 105343 for a view of the reverse of this medal.

U.S. Naval History & Heritage Command photograph

Online Image: 100KB; 740 x 585 pixels

 
Photo #: NH 105343

U.S. Navy Medal Of Honor


Reverse of a Medal of Honor awarded to Quartermaster Frank M. Upton, of USS Stewart, for "extraordinary heroism" when he risked his life while rescuing an exhausted survivor of the explosion of the American S.S. Florence H on 17 April 1918.
See Photo # NH 105342 for a view of the obverse of this medal.

U.S. Naval History & Heritage Command photograph

Online Image: 150KB; 740 x 585 pixels

 
Photo #: NH 105344

King George V Gallantry at Sea Medal


Obverse of a Gallantry at Sea Medal awarded by the British Government to Frank M. Upton, of SS President Roosevelt, in recognition of his role in the rescue of crew members of the British Freighter Antinoe while it was breaking up in the North Atlantic on 26 January 1926.
See Photo # NH 105345 for a view of the reverse of this medal.

U.S. Naval History & Heritage Command photograph

Online Image: 118KB; 580 x 765 pixels

 
Photo #: NH 105345

King George V Gallantry at Sea Medal


Reverse of a Gallantry at Sea Medal awarded by the British Government to Frank M. Upton, of SS President Roosevelt, in recognition of his role in the rescue of crew members of the British Freighter Antinoe while it was breaking up in the North Atlantic on 26 January 1926.
See Photo # NH 105344 for a view of the obverse of this medal.

U.S. Naval History & Heritage Command photograph

Online Image: 147KB; 590 x 765 pixels

 



Medal of Honor citation of Quartermaster Frank Monroe Upton, USN (as printed in the official publication "Medal of Honor, 1861-1949, The Navy", page 126):

"For extraordinary heroism following internal explosion of the Florence H, on 17 April 1918. The sea in the vicinity of wreckage was covered by a mass of boxes of smokeless powder, which were repeatedly exploding. FRANK M. UPTON, of the U.S.S. Stewart, plunged overboard to rescue a survivor who was surrounded by powder boxes and too exhausted to help himself. Fully realizing the danger from continual explosion of similar powder boxes in the vicinity, he risked his life to save the life of this man."


For higher resolution images see: Obtaining Photographic Reproductions

To the best of our knowledge, the pictures referenced here are all in the Public Domain, and can therefore be freely downloaded and used for any purpose.





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