Honored U.S. Army Air Corps pilot, faithful servant, husband of 73 years, father, grandfather to be memorialized Fri., Jan. 24, 2020 in Vancouver
Francis Eugene Madore was born November 16, 1921, to Frank Madore and Ida Sharboneau Madore in Flint, Michigan. He passed away peacefully on December 26, 2019, in Vancouver, Washington, where he resided with his wife, Lucille “Erma” Madore. He was 98 years old.
“Gene” was the oldest of eight children. At 16 years old, he moved with his parents and siblings from Flint, Michigan to a farm on East Coldwater Road in Davison, Michigan. He graduated from St. Mary’s High School in 1939, working at the AC Spark Plug Company (a division of General Motors) as well as on the family farm before enlisting in the US Army Air Corps in November 1942.
In March 1944, Gene was transferred to Bisterne, England, where he served as a First Lieutenant P-47 Thunderbolt pilot, participating in over 95 sorties and 103 combat missions over the English Channel and in Western Europe as part of the 371st Fighter Squadron. He is credited with downing at least three German ME-109 planes as well as a FW 190, and provided aerial support for American ground troops on D-Day. For his heroism as a pilot he was awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross, the Air Medal with 15 Oak Leaf Clusters, and the European-African-Middle Eastern Campaign Medal.
After his honorable discharge from service, Gene returned to Davison and on August 10, 1946, married Lucille “Erma” Christenson, the oldest daughter of Archie Christenson and Minnie Arsenault Christenson. On their first date, Gene took Erma flying. Over the years, they had eight children. Gene worked steadily as a milkman, car salesman, and realtor, but primarily as a skilled mechanic at Ternstedt Manufacturing Company (also a division of General Motors). In 1967, Gene moved his family to San Rafael, California, where he worked in the shipyards of San Francisco with his brother-in-law. They later lived in the cities of Buena Park and Cypress, California. From there, he and Erma finally moved to Vancouver, Washington, in 1992.
Gene honored God with his life and was characterized by his honesty, hard work, discipline, responsibility, and humility. Besides his strong commitment to serving God, country, and family, Gene delighted in fishing and in the outdoors. Gene is survived by his loving wife of 73 years, “Erma” Madore, and by three sisters, Margaret Madore Fromwiller, Yvonne Madore Gerow, and Norma Madore Hubbard, as well as his eight children and their families: Robert “Bob” Madore, Susan Bardzik, Steven “Steve” Madore, David Madore, Christopher “Chris” Madore, Nancy Wood, Edward “Ed” Madore, and Laurie Dalhover, along with 19 grandchildren and 31 great-grandchildren. Guests are invited to attend a Memorial Service for Francis Eugene Madore at 3 p.m. on Fri., Jan. 24, 2020 at Glenwood Community Church, 12201 NE 72nd Ave, Vancouver, WA 98686.