WWII still vivid in memory of Weyerhaeuser veteran

Plaque, flag and wreath adorn the entrance to Wally Checkalski’s place at Woodstone Assisted Living in Rice Lake. He’s wearing a replica of his original flight jacket that his family gave him on his 90th birthday. The 99-year-old World War II veteran reminisced about his service as an aviation radioman.

Wallace Checkalski, 99, a resident of Woodstone Assisted Living in Rice Lake who has lived most of his life in Weyerhaeuser, is still hoping to catch a glimpse of his guardian angel. The World War II veteran knows he had one who saw him through traveling trials and matched him up with a pilot who became a trusted friend that he met up with again 65 years later in 2009.

He is third of six Checkalski brothers who were born and raised on a farm near Weyerhaeuser. His oldest brother Albert worked on the railroad and was never drafted nor enlisted in the war. Second oldest brother Donald was one of the first from Rusk County to be drafted, but he got rejected because of an injured knee. Then came Wally, as he prefers to be called, who enlisted when he was 20 years old in 1943. He did not have to serve but wanted to.

(Copyright © 2021 APG Media)

Recommended for you

Load comments