Paul Lunde, 96, of Preston
Wednesday, December 11, 2013 3:40 AM
Paul A. Lunde, 96, of rural Preston, died Saturday, Dec. 7, 2013, at his home.
He was born Oct. 20, 1917, in Austin, Minn., the son of Clarence and Stella (Anstett) Lunde. He was raised in Austin. At the time of his high school graduation he was working as an assistant pressman at the Austin Daily Herald. In October of 1935, he began a five-year printing apprenticeship at the US Government Printing Office. He became a Journeyman Printer in 1940, but that career was interrupted as the country prepared for war.
He married Elizabeth VanGeuder on June 1, 1940, in Washington, D.C. In the same year he soloed in a Piper Cub and began his additional flying training.
By 1942, he was teaching pilot training to army cadets in Stearman open cockpit bi-planes. For the next three years he flew cargo planes for the Military Air Transport Command - from New York to Britain and to Casablanca - cargo eastbound and critically wounded soldiers westbound back to New York. In May 1945, he flew to Paris to bring a conquering general home. This was General Mark Clark, who arrived at Midway Airport in Chicago at high noon on Memorial Day, accompanied by 25 Illinois GIs.
After the war, he continued flying with American Airlines, based in Chicago, until his retirement at age 60 in 1977. He started flying DC-3s for American; his last flight was in a DC-10. His favorite route was from Chicago to Honolulu to Sidney, Australia.
In 1970, he and his wife moved to the family farm in Preston where he started a third career as a farmer and Angus breeder. They became the fifth generation of Lundes to live in the stone house, originally built in 1865. He did the design and most of the construction on the expansion and modernization of the original home.
He is survived by his wife, Elizabeth; his children, Joan (James) Fencil of Chicago, Ill., Peter (Sue) Lunde of Houston, Texas, and Paula Lunde, M.D., of Kalamazoo, Mich.; six grandchildren; 12 great-grandchildren; and three great-great-grandchildren.
He was preceded in death by his brother, C.A. Lunde.
The funeral will be held at noon on Thursday, Dec. 12, at the Thauwald Funeral Home in Preston with Allen Hanson presiding. Burial will be in the Union Prairie Cemetery in rural Preston.
Friends may call at the funeral home from 5 to 8 p.m., Wednesday, and at the funeral home on Thursday an hour before the service.
The family prefers memorials be given to the Alzheimer's Association.