John Wilson


Col. John Wilson Jr. 1905-1975

Articles from a local news paper:

COLONEL JOHN When Col. John Wilson died this past week. a lot of people:
Camden and Hope lost one of the best back-up men they ever had.

John was a tough old warrior - and he reveled in the knowledge of it. He loved nothing better than a good target and a chance to fire away. And there were no sacred cows in John's line of fire.

Not long ago. John raised outraged cries with a salvo agains women's lib. Politically we were pretty much on opposite sides of the range, and that occasionally made for a lively exchange between us - on this page but more often across the desk.

John was sympathetic but never maudlin. He understood thecrunch of meeting deadlines - and when called on he could be counted upon to deliver.

First time we met we talked about Camden Communit Hospital. That was going on three years ago now, where passions in the community were smoking over the status of Camden Community Hospital as an acute care center and the then projected Pen Bay Medical Center. John was 100 per cent for the local hospital, but he also saw the wisdom of restoring the temper of the community to an even keel.

Last time we spoke together was briefly over the phone little more than two weeks ago. John was a patient in Camden Community Hospital, and he had called to reiterate once more his high opinion of this small acute care facility - and particularlv for the attention he was getting from the nursing staff. John went with the knowledge that the hospital has passed over the hurdles of the past few years and that a new nursing home will be built as an adjunct to it.

Many times during the final months of his illness, ,John would rally to a query about whether he planned to have a column this week or not. Sure enough, he'd deliver. And if it was going to be later than usual- he'd call. At his humorous best - and one of the best examples is the first grapeshot we've been able to find in our bound volumes reprinted to the right - John could spin yarns that embellished fact without straying too far from the truth.

In the past year in a series of columns, John laid aside his cannon and picked up the thread of an adventure at sea in his Moonbeam Saga - which provided an irreverent characterization of naval high brass.

Naval adventures of lesser degree embroiled him in a mock battle with Mac MacMullen of Wayfarer over a gold canoe. This subsequently got him out to sea with only the Camden dump serving as a signal home.

Colonel John made for some lively reading over the years nearly three decades on this paper alone for which he received.and would accept, no pay.

Colonel John - gutsy. honest, and fun. We're going to miss him.

- J,D.

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Col. John Wilson was a Reserve Officer in the Artillery in 1941 and entered the war as a Second Lieut. He served in both the European and Pacific theaters.of action. He went to Europe as a member of Gen. Omar Bradley's staff. where he paarticipated in the planning of the invasion of Europe in 1944. Following the end of the war in Europe Col. Wilson was transferred to the Pacific for another year. Later he served in Washington at the Pentagon and was assigned to a tour of duty in Iceland in 1952. Col Wilson was much decorated for his wartime service. A European campaign ribbon with five stars, the French Legion of Honor and French Croix de Guerre, and Bronze Star and in 1947 he received the Croix de Guerre from Luxemburg and th'e National Defence Medal.

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