Veteran of the Week: 2nd Lt. William Calvin Maxwell

Published 3:35 am Friday, February 28, 2020

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By MELANIE POOLE / Special to the Reporter

The Veteran of the Week is sponsored by the National Veterans Shrine and Register of Honor at the American Village — honoring America’s veterans and telling the stories of their service and sacrifice for the cause of liberty.


“The American Village is pleased to join the Shelby County Reporter in recognizing 2nd Lt. William Calvin Maxwell as Veteran of the Week,” American Village founder and CEO Tom Walker said. “He is representative of the hundreds of thousands of Alabamians who have risked it all for the sake of our country and its freedom. To all veterans we owe a debt we can never fully repay.”

Visit the website,, today and add your loved ones to the Register of Honor. Help us honor, recognize, respect and remember our country’s veterans.

Here are highlights about this week’s Veteran of the Week:

Lt. William C. Maxwell was born on Nov. 9, 1892, in Natchez, Alabama. In 1917, he joined the U.S. Army Air Corp while he was an ROTC student at the University of Alabama. He was commissioned in April 1918 and eventually assigned to the 3rd Aero Squadron in The Philippines. On Aug. 12, 1920, his DH-4 bi-plane suffered engine failure. Attempting to land his plane in a sugarcane field and to avoid a group of nearby school children he diverted his plane and collided with a sugarcane tree, which had a flagpole behind it. He was killed instantly. On the recommendation of his commanding officer, Major Roy C. Brown, the Montgomery Air Intermediate Depot in his home state was renamed Maxwell Field on Nov. 8, 1922. Today Maxwell Air Force Base in Alabama is an important and critical component of the U.S. Air Force and is the home to the Air Force ROTC program.

Melanie Poole is Communications Officer for the American Village and can be reached at