Joyce W. Hornady received his education in Lincoln, Nebraska, first in the Public schools, and finishing up at the University of Nebraska and Nebraska Wesleyan University. He and his wife moved to Grand Island in 1942, when he was employed to train the guard force at the Cornhusker Army Ammunition plant as a marksmanship instructor. He opened a sporting goods store in 1946. Originally partnering with Vernon Speer of Lincoln, he built a machine that converted spent 22 rimfire cases into bullet jackets, and finally into bullets. Mr. Speer and Mr. Hornady parted ways, and in 1949 Mr. Hornady began the Hornady Manufacturing Company and began to manufacture his own 30 calibre bullet. He began Frontier Ammunition in 1964, and in 1971 he acquired the Pacific Tool Company in order to diversify into the reloading market. Late in the 1970s he acquired the West Coast Shot Company, which he renamed Hornady Magnum Shot. This company became independent again in the 1990s.
The company he founded is still in operation, and is a major employer in Grand Island, Nebraska.
Mr. Hornady died in January of 1981 when the plane he was flying crashed into Lake Pontchartrain, near New Orleans, Louisiana. Two Hornady employees were with him at the time, Edward Heers and James Garber. None survived the crash. He was survived by his wife and three children.
Marval A. Steen Hornady
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