Wednesday, February 22, 2017

Mrs. McLaughlin Receives Letter About Her Son's Death in Fairbanks, Alaska, in 1948

“Mrs. McLaughlin Receives Letter About Her Son,” from the Feb. 5, 1951 issue of the Statesville Landmark

Clyde McLaughlin, son of Mrs. C.C. McLaughlin of Cleveland, Route 2, died in Fairbanks, Alaska, on December 8, 1948. At the time of his death, which was caused by freezing when his airplane was stranded on a commercial run, an account was carried in the Jessen’s Weekly newspaper of Fairbanks. The editor of the paper, Mr. Jessen, spoke highly of the young man, his promise as a business man and his high character and the esteem in which he was held in Fairbanks.

Recently the Reader’s Digest carried a picture of Mr. Jessen and an account of his paper—“most widely read paper in Alaska, one that covers the land by sled, bush plane, boat and pack board t the most remote snow bound cabins.”

Mrs. McLaughlin wrote to Mr. Jessen, expressing an interest in the article and also recalling with appreciation his notice about her son. She said she never expected a reply from such a busy man but last week she received one.

Mr. Jessen in his letter written Jan. 26 to her said, “We knew your son well and were shocked and grieved at the tragedy that ended his career so early in life. He was one of the finest, most upstanding young men we have known and our opinion was shared by all in Alaska who knew him. It was thought he had a great future in aviation and his early death is a loss to Alaska as well as to yourself.
“You have however memories of which to be proud and you can take pride that he was your son and that your guidance in his early years molded his character to the fine pattern it was. We cannot understand some things in this world—as to why fine young men of promise are cut off in their youth while so much of apparent scum of the earth seems to live on forever. But we suppose there is a reason in the Divine plan of things that is unrevealed to us.

“Thank you for your kind words regarding the Reader’s Digest article. It has brought letters from all over the world as well as the states, England, Germany, Italy, France, Greece and Austria and also New Zealand.”

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