Frakes served with Maintenance Battalions in West Germany
MADISON – Captain Lawrence Frakes earned his commission as Second Lieutenant, Field Artillery in two-year ROTC at Knox College in Galesburg, Ill. He was commissioned into the U.S. Army in June 1973, the same day he received his bachelor’s degree.
Although trained for Vietnam service, “the war was ending. My commitment was reduced to three months for training (ADT) and eight years in the reserves,” Frakes said. He received a one-year delay to teach instrumental music.
Frakes transferred to Armor Officer Basic Course at Fort Knox, Ky. and transferred to Ordnance branch. After training at Aberdeen Proving Ground, Md., he returned to Fort Knox to 544th Maintenance Battalion.
He served as Platoon Leader in 76th Heavy Equipment Maintenance Company; Maintenance Control Officer, 530th Maintenance Company; and Assistant Materiel Officer at battalion level for armored vehicles, tactical trucks and engineer construction equipment.
Frakes was extended at Knox to command 30th Ordnance Detachment to maintain TOW/Dragon Wire Guided Missile and short-range air defense (SHORADS) systems.
At Redstone Arsenal in 1979, he studied Missile Maintenance Track and deployed to West Germany three years in command positions and Adjutant with 122nd Maintenance Battalion and 8th Maintenance Battalion. Both units were garrisoned in Hanau, supported U.S. V Corps, 3rd Armored Division, and 11th Armored Cavalry Regiment in Fulda.
Frakes’ tour ended in 1982. He then taught at U.S. Army Missile and Munitions Center and School on Redstone Arsenal.
Discharged in 1983, Frakes worked as civilian instructor for Missile School. After nine years, he held rank of Captain. He received National Defense Service and Army Commendation medals and Army Service and Overseas Service ribbons.
Frakes earned master’s degrees from Boston University and Florida Tech and Project Management Professional certification. He works as a senior project controls analyst for Ohio Technology Clearinghouse.
He and wife Terry, a technical writer at NASA, have lived in Madison since 1992. Their children are Renna and husband Rob of Seattle; Darla and Maxim of Birmingham; Ty of Bozeman, Mont.; and Sarah of Huntsville.
Lawrence Frakes plays bass clarinet in Madison Community Band; sings in Messiah Lutheran Church Choir; Messiah Minstrels; is assistant director of Messiah’s summer melodrama; and has extensive theatre experience.
Member of American Legion, Post 229, he’s “following in my Dad’s footsteps … World War II Navy vet and member of Post 247, Edison Park, Ill.”