Life in the Military:
Colonel H. Speed Wilson joined the U.S. Marine Corps in 1942 and went to boot camp in San Diego and flight school in Pensacola, Florida. Upon completion of flight school he was trained as a fighter pilot and eventually flew the Chance Vought F4U Corsair. He flew numerous missions against the Japanese fortress at Rabaul and was shot down twice. Following the war, he studied mechanical engineering at the University of Texas and served in a Marine Reserve fighter squadron. Recalled during the Korean War, he flew the F7F Tigercat, a night and all-weather fighter, in Korean. He was shot down over Wonson Harbor. After Korea he served in various training and Reserve commands including the chief of staff of the Marine Amphibious Brigade in Vietnam.
Life after the Military:
After Colonel Wilson retired from the Marine Corps with 31 years of service, he settled in Green. He spends his time enjoying his retirement and often gives talks to various organizations about his experiences in the military. For his military service in three wars, Col. Wilson received three distinguished Flying Crosses, 16 Air medals, five Distinguished Combat Unit awards, the Legion of Merit with Combat V, the Marine Commendation Medal and the Republic of Vietnam’s Distinguished Service Cross.