Grayling native and World War II veteran honored for his service to the country
Dan Sanderson | Staff Writer
A military veteran who was born and raised in Crawford County was recognized for his service to country near his hometown.
Don Corwin was raised on a dairy farm located off of Four Mile Road in Grayling Charter Township. His dad, Charles Corwin, operated the farm from 1923 through 1946.
“We lived on the farm and we had a lot of hard work to do in those days,” Don recalled. “We had to load up the milk, and he came in the morning and he would bring us to school. He would come in and deliver his milk, then he would come back in at 4 o’clock and pick us from school and take us home and we would start the work again.”
Don graduated from Grayling High School in 1939.
He joined the armed forces and served in the 10th Armored Division 425th Field Battalion in Europe during World War II.
Corwin served as a radio operator located miles from the front lines.
“Out battery would serve the battalion with gas and food and any supplies they needed,” he said. “I never really did see any action, but I served, so I did something for the country.”
After the war, Corwin relocated to the Village of Clinton Township, which is about 25 miles southwest of Ann Arbor.
There, he met his wife, Janet, and had five children, Gary, Linda, Wendell, Warren, and Fran. The couple had 14 grandchildren and 14 great grandchildren.
Don worked for Western Union, and was an employee for the Ford Motor Company’s Rawsonville plant for 23 years before he retired in 1985.
Janet, who worked as a beautician, passed away in May 2018.
“If she would have lived two more months, we would have been married for 70 years,” Don said.
Don was honored by the Saline Main Street Program through its Military and Veterans Program with a banner placed on a lightpost in the community. He was among 43 veterans who were recognized.
“It means I served and I’m glad I got home again safe,” he said. “A lot of them didn’t. I served my country and served my time, so I guess that’s something to be proud of.”
Gary Corwin still lives at the family farm, which has been certified as a Centennial Farm by the State of Michigan.
“There’s been a Corwin there for 100 years,” Warren said.