Earnest Groves Wold
Submitted by: Pat Mosites, Employee at Minneapolis International Airport-airfield named in his honor Wold-Chamberlain Field
Earnest Groves Wold was born around 1897. Earnest Wold served in World War 1 with the Lafayette Escadrille. The enlistment was in 1917 and the service was completed in 1918.
Story of Service
Ernest Groves Wold, served as a reconnaissance pilot in France’s First Aero Squadron, the Lafayette Escadrille, during World War I. Wold’s exceptional coolness and accuracy of fire enabled him to crisscross enemy lines four times on August 1, 1918, photographing German positions and forcing down at least two of five attacking German aircraft.
After machine gun bullets riddled his arms and killed his observer-photographer, Wold piloted his disabled plane back to base, flying with his feet and knees. He died in the crash landing, but his photographs safely reached French forces.
Five years later when the primitive “Speedway Airport” in south Minneapolis was about to be expanded and used for commercial and passenger traffic, it was decided that the new name for the facility should be Wold-Chamberlain Twin City Airport in honor of two war heroes, Ernest Groves Wold and Cyrus Foss Chamberlain. He rests at Aisne-Marne American Cemetery in France.