Jack E. Wilson


Jack E. Wilson, died Dec. 18, 2003, in Fairbanks, Alaska.

Wilson was born Feb. 25, 1921, in Craig, to George A. and Maude Wilson.

Wilson was raised on his parents' farm two miles east of Craig. He attended Craig Schools and graduated from Craig High School. Soon after graduation, he enlisted in the armed services. In 1941, he began his flight training and progressed to different types of aircraft. During WWII, he flew many kinds of planes in all kinds of situations. He was shot down behind enemy lines on one occasion, but managed to repair his plane and escape capture. Wilson was awarded the Air medal with two clusters, a Purple Heart, also eight battle stars and a unit citation for his group for their part in the Normandy invasion. After his discharge in 1946, he returned to Craig, where he engaged in various activities. Wilson first went to Alaska in 1951, and stayed there most of the rest of his life. He became a bush pilot and pioneered in landing on glaciers. He also flew mail runs and guiding trips. Whatever there was to do he did it, with many different experiences. After he retired from flying, he published two books, one, "Glacier Wings and Tales," and the other, "The Quest For Dall Sheep." He had many other articles published in various magazines.

Wilson is survived by his wife, Bonnie; sons Todd J. and Tony; a sister, Stella Jones, of Steamboat Springs; and several nieces and nephews.

Wilson was preceded in death by his parents, a brother, and two sisters.

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