Baseball in Wartime

Baseball's Greatest Sacrifice

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World War II Hero of the Minor Leagues 

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Air MedalLou Janiceck


Date and Place of Birth: April 22, 1918 Dallas, Texas

Died: February 2, 2003 Dallas, Texas

Baseball Experience: Minor League
First Lieutenant
Military Unit:
425th Night Fighter Sqyadron, Ninth Air Force USAAF

Area Served: European Theater of Operations


Louis H "Lou" Janiceck was born in Dallas, Texas on April 22, 1918. He grew up in the Oak Cliff area and attended Adamson High School. He signed under the name of Lou Goldman for Refugio of the Texas Valley League in 1938. With Midland of the West Texas-New Mexico League in 1939 he was 13-8 with a 4.57 ERA, and pitched for Vancouver in 1940 and 1941, as well as having a brief spell with Seattle of the Pacific Coast League.


Janiceck entered military service with the Army Air Corps at Tarrant Field, Texas on September 23, 1941. He later served in Europe as a Northrop P-61 Black Widow night fighter pilot with the 425th Night Fighter Squadron. He completed 30 strafing and radar-controlled interception patrols ahead of Third Army Corps in Germany. First Lieutenant Janiceck was awarded the Air Medal with six Oak Leaf Clusters, the Distinguished Unit Citation Badge, Campaign Medal and 3 Bronze Campaign Stars.


Northrop P-61 Black Widow


Janiceck briefly returned to baseball after the war pitching for Paris, Gadsden, San Antonio and Vancouver in 1946. Returning to the Dallas area he worked for the Greyhound Bus Lines and retired after 37 years. He was a Master Mason and member of Dallas Lodge #760.


Lou Janicek  passed away on February 2, 2003, and is buried at DFW National Cemetery. He was survived by his wife, Melba, and their daughter Patsy Cobb.

Created March 18, 2008.Minor League Baseball Updated March 1, 2015.


Copyright © 2015 Gary Bedingfield (Baseball in Wartime). All Rights Reserved.