Harold E. Wilson
|The West Virginia CCC Museum
Association announces the induction of Harold Earl Wilson into the 2011
Hall of Fame.
Harold E. Wilson was born in Metz, Marion County, West Virginia April 22, 1919. He attended the Metz Run School, a one room school. He was forced to leave school in the 8th grade during the depths of the Great Depression.
Wilson joined the CCC in 1936. He served at Camp Little Fork, Pendleton County, West Virginia. “I helped man the Reddish Knob fire tower about nine miles from camp in the Shenandoah Mountains on the Virginia-West Virginia border. We fought a number of bad forest fires in the George Washington National Forest.” He commented. “We planted too many trees to count. And, on weekends, we took classes.” he continued. “I especially liked the photography classes. I worked a lot in the dark room.” he added. “I remember the camp baseball team. I played in the outfield.” Harold added “Besides educating me, the CCC's greatest contribution was helping my family back home survive through those tough depression years. I dont know what we would have done without the CCC. We had a family of three girls and two boys to raise.”
In 1940, Harold married his sweetheart Anna Valykeo. They have been married for 70 years and, have two daughters, Georgianne and Percilla.
Mr. Wilson served with distinction in the U.S. Army during World War II. “I joined the army infantry and was shipped out to Africa and became part of the North Africa and Italian liberation campaigns. I ended up in Austria.” He exclaimed. “I always wanted to go back and see St. Peter's, the Leaning Tower, the Colosseum, the beautiful cities of Rome and Florence. But, I never did.” Harold received one bronze star and four battle stars for his service.
After the war, he worked at Weirton Steel for a brief time. Harold retired from the Rachel Coal Mine in Marion County after thirty-three years.