Alan Abner, 83, a decorated World War II fighter pilot, Oregon native and part-time resident of Klamath Falls, died Dec. 11, 2004, in Reno, Nevada.
Mr. Abner was born Feb. 25, 1921, in Portland to Warren and Sylvia Abner and he was raised in Newberg, North Bend and Portland.
As a youngster, he milked cows for the family-owned creamery and also worked wrapping and delivering bread for a Newberg bakery.
After graduating from high school in 1938, he attended Pacific College in Oregon and Tulsa University in Oklahoma before enlisting in the Army Air Corps during World War II.
He was assigned to the 357th Fighter Group in Leiston, England, and achieved 14 decorations, including the Distinguished Flying Cross, four Air Medals and the French Croix de Guerre.
He flew 50 missions and was shot down over the English Channel and rescued by American forces.
After VE Day, the fighter group went to Munich, Germany. and he was released from duty as a captain in 1946.
On Oct. 23, 1950, he married Donna Marie Kinney in Klamath Falls.
Mr. Abner He was called back to active duty during the Korean War and served as chief of the Psychological Warfare Branch in Washington, D.C., until 1953 when he was released with the rank of major.
In 1953, he served as general manager of KFJI radio station in Klamath Falls.
The Abners moved ink 1959 to Reno, where he worked for KOLO as an anchor and talk show host.
In 1966, he worked on the gubernatorial campaign of Paul Laxalt and served as chairman of the Nevada Gaming Control Board before leaving the post to take over as co-owner and general managers of KSHO Channel 13 in Las Vegas.
In 1968, he directed Richard Nixon's presidential campaign in Oregon and helped Nixon carry the state.
In 1972, he served as executive director of Televention, a division of Columbia Pictures in New York City. He managed and anchored national coverage of the Democratic and Republican conventions. He then worked as a public relations consultant until his retirement.
He and his wife have split time between Reno and their family ranch in Klamath Falls.
Mr. Abner authored several books, including "Dead Reckoning," an account of his experience as a World War II fighter pilot, and "Psywarriors," which detailed his work in psychological warfare during the Korean War.
Survivors include his wife of 54 years, Donna Kinney, and a son, Gregory, of Burlington, Vt.
MAJ US AIR FORCE KOREA AND WORLD WAR II
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