Wednesday, May 31, 2017

Max Wilson in Seward and Elsewhere

Max Wilson rode out from Lincoln this morning  with Chris, his next door neighbor to have coffee with us. Chris drops by occasionally and has brought Max out a few times in the past where we mostly heard of his early days in Seward and WWII stories. Max was born in Hordville, NE in 1922 where his Dad had a grain elevator and feed-mill. They came to Seward where he ran the Seward City Mill for a few years before moving to Goochs Mill in Lincoln. This enabled young Max to attend UN-L where he learned to fly in an Army Air Corps program. With an ME degree he was commissioned into the Army Air Force and became a B-17 pilot. He flew missions in the European theater when he was 21 years old. This picture of him is from a Sept. 1, 2015 story in the Lincoln Journal Star that told of his plane being shot down in a Swiss pasture and of his spending 6-months in an internment camp before escaping and finding his way back to London. We didn't talk much about WWII this morning, but he asked if any of us Seward natives remembered when the Boy Scout parades were discontinued,  since he remembers selling Poppies and walking in the Parade. We went on to questions about his career following the war, and it is fantastic. He went to work for General Motors and worked his way up the corporate ladder and was sent on a world tour by GM to see what possibilities may exist.  His assessment helped lead to General Motors expanding to a world-wide operation, This was at a time when technology was advancing at a rapid pace and he was assigned to head up beginning operations for GM in several near east countries and Africa. The number of World leaders with whom he had a personal relationship is unbelievable. After an outstanding career, he and his wife retired in Southern California and then returned to Lincoln to be near family. His ability to remember details and articulate them would be commendable for one at any age but at his age, it confirms his being one of the greatest of "The Greatest Generation". 

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