Dixson I. Wands

Date of Birth:  1917


Place of Birth:  Lenore, Kansas


Father and Mother’s Names:   Lucinda Dixson (Grandmother)


Spouse and Children’s Names:  Mildred Berniece Johnson Wands (wife), married April 8, 1939; Jack Raymond Wands (son).


Service Branch:  Army Air Corps


Rank/Specialty:  First Lieutenant


Service ID:  0803719


Division/Company/Unit info:  729 Bomber Squadron, 452 Bomb Group (Heavy).


Riley Connection:  The 1940, 1941, 1942, and 1943 Manhattan census records show Dixson as living in Manhattan. The 1939 Manhattan directory shows Dixson living at 1503 Fairchild Avenue.


Awards and Commendations:  Air Medal with Oak Leaf Cluster and the Purple Heart.


Date of Death (and Age):  April 21, 1944 (age 27)


Place of Death:  England


Grave Location:   Cambridge, England.


Bio:  The 1930 U.S. Census shows Dixson as living with his grandmother in Colorado. He came to Manhattan to attend Kansas State College, where he was a general studies major, was a member of Pi Kappa Alpha fraternity, was involved with Wampus Cats, and with boxing. After graduation, he settled in Manhattan, worked as a foreman in a manufacturing job and was married. Dixson joined the Army Air Corps, where he served with the 729 Bomber Squadron, 452 Bomb Group. The 452 flew B-17s from England and hit strategic targets in Germany. The 452 also supported ground forces. According to information about the 452, Dixson was a crew member of a plane that hit heavy turbulence in poor weather conditions and crashed.




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