Sgt Ernest Block Name : Ernest Block
Rank : Sergeant
Squadron : 701st Bomber Squadron
Group : 445th Bomber Group
Entered Service from : South Dakota
Date of Birth : 20 December 1923
Place of Birth : Webster, SD
Date of Death : 27 February 1945
Place of Death : Vicinity of Hollen (G)
Remembered at Henri-Chap WOM
Awards : Bronze Star (2)
Air Medal 2
Purple Heart

Ernest Block's Story ...

Ernest Block was born in Webster, South Dakota on December 20, 1923. He was born to Frank and Martha Cisewski Block. He had two sisters: Lucille and Arlene. Leonard was his only brother. Ernest Block grew up in Grenville and completed the first eight grades at a public school and two years at St. Joseph School in Grenville. Ernest enjoyed hunting and fishing around where he grew up.

Ernest back home ...

Ernest entered the United States Army on December 7, 1943. He was trained at Biggs Field, Amarillo and in Laredo, Texas. In July of 1944, Ernest was sent overseas. Based in England, he was a top turret gunner in the 701st Bomber Squadron,445th Bomber Group, Heavy. Before his death in 1945, Ernest completed 48 missions successfully.


Gunner training in Laredo, Texas

Sergeant Ernest Block was pronounced missing in action over Hollen, Germany on February 27, 1945. The wings of his plane were shot off in his final mission. Most of the crew perished but the pilot, co-pilot, and nose gunner parachuted to safety. His body was never recovered, but a tablet marker for him can be seen at the Henri-Chapelle American Cemetery in Belgium. For his meritorious service he was awarded the Air Medal, three Oak Leaf Clusters, two Bronze Stars, and the Purple Heart.

downed bomber of the 701st Bomber Squadron

These days Ernest Block is remembered in the beautiful American Military Cemetery at Henri-Chapelle ... Ernest's remains were never recoverd and he's still considered Missing in Action. In the years after the war the American Military declared those still Missing in Action, dead. He is survived by his two sisters: Arlene Breske of Webster, South Dakota, and Lucille Gaikowski of Watertown, South Dakota. His brother, Leonard Block, resides in Webster, South Dakota.

His father died in August of 1983 at the age of 89, and his mother passed away in June of 1985 at the age of 84.He is remembered and honored by his entire family, by the people of the State of South Dakota, by every visitor of the Henri-Chapelle cemetery and by everyone who visits the In-Honored-Glory website

the Walls of the Missing at Henri-Chapelle

Special thanks to his two sisters: Arlene Breske of Webster, South Dakota, Lucille Gaikowski of Watertown, South Dakota and to his brother, Leonard Block, who resides in Webster, South Dakota.

Additional Thanks to Sheila Hansen, Crystal Pies and Jeremy Beisch of the WWII Memorial project of the Fallen Sons and Daughters of South Dakota ...

A link to the South Dakota WWII Memorial can be found under the links-section "Research & Information"

Henri-Chapelle American Military Cemetery
published Februari 29, 2008