Recent Visitors to the Grave of Lt. Daniel S. Wilson in France

Daniel S. Wilson, a farm kid from Minburn, Iowa, who became the pilot of a P-38 Lightning in World War II, was Killed in Action on this date in 1945.

Gaston and Bernard Adier, at Lt. Daniel S. Wilson’s grave, Lorraine American Cemetery, St. Avold, France. February 13, 2022

A week ago, brothers Gaston and Bernard Adier, along with Gaston’s wife, paid their respects to young Americans who are buried in the nearby Lorraine American Cemetery at St. Avold. Gaston Adier is the mayor of Carling, France, which is about four miles from St. Avold. They have taken the time to do this before.

They regularly visit the grave of Danny Wilson and send us a photo, this time including historic information: “Le 19 février 1945, son P-38 est perdu après une mission d’escorte à Vienne, puis mitraillage dans la région de Graz. Il a été perdu près de Schwanberg, en Autriche. Des témoins oculaires ont déclaré qu’il était difficile de repérer un avion argenté dans une zone enneigée. Le lieutenant Daniel S. Wilson a été répertorié comme MIA à partir de cette date jusqu’en janvier 1946. À ce moment-là, l’armée avait reçu des informations provenant de documents allemands capturés par l’intermédiaire d’une équipe britannique d’enregistrement des tombes, transmises à une équipe américaine d’enregistrement des tombes qui a suivi en novembre 1945. Ses parents ont été avisés en janvier 1946. Sa dépouille a été transportée d’Autriche en août 1946 au cimetière temporaire puis définitif américain de Lorraine à Saint-Avold, en France.”

Translation: “On February 19, 1945, his P-38 was lost after an escort mission in Vienna, then strafing a train iin the Graz region. Lost at Schwanberg, Austria. Eyewitnesses said it was difficult to spot a silver plane in a snowy area. Lieutenant Daniel S. Wilson was listed as MIA from this date until January 1946. At that time, the army had received information from German documents captured through a British grave recording team, transmitted to an American grave recording team that followed in later 1945. His parents were notified in January 1946. His remains were transported from Austria in August 1946 to the temporary, then final American cemetery of Lorraine in Saint-Avold, France.”


Remembering Daniel S. Wilson on this anniversary of his loss.

Mayor Adier, on the right in the back row, sends a photo every once in a while. He and others also take students to the cemetery to pay their respects and to tell the stories of the Americans buried there. This one is from June 2018.


  1. It’s praiseworthy that these Frenchmen continue to recognize the sacrifices of our service members and their families in helping to free their country from totalitarianism.

    • So many in that part of Europe are very aware of the young Americans who died to free where they live! Outliers, like Dan Wilson, were brought to where a permanent cemetery would eventually be built. But these brothers seem to have a special heart for certain Americans there.

  2. Your family has paid such a heavy price for our freedom Ms. Joy. I sometimes wonder how different their legacy would be had they survived the war ma’am. How different would our world be because of them? Joining with you in remembering this brave American soldier today.

    • Europeans who live where young Americans helped free them are so aware and thankful. Thank you, JD. Just recently I’ve thought about how many more cousins I’d have. The nine of us are already down to just four.

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