Stanley V. Colson

Loved family, model airplanes, veteran

Stanley V. Colson, of Everett, passed away at home surrounded by his loving family on February 16th, 2021 at 97 years. Beloved husband of the late Elsbeth B. (Horath) Colson for 63 years. Loving father of Ralph Colson and his wife Linda Bellofatto of Nahant, Carl Colson, and his wife Judy Colson of Everett, and the late Bernard Colson.

Cherished grandfather of Matthew Colson, Allison Pires and her husband Mike Pires, Daryl Ann Colson, and Elsbeth Ann Colson. Cherished great-grandfather of Harper Pires. He is also survived by his special pals Blackie, Grey, and Buddy. Relatives and friends are kindly invited to attend visiting hours at the JF Ward Funeral Home, 772 Broadway, Everett, on Friday, Feb 26th, from 3:30-8 pm. A funeral will be held from the funeral home on Saturday, Feb 27th, at 10 am with a funeral service commencing at 11 am. Services will conclude with military honors and interment in Woodlawn Cemetery, Everett.

Stanley was a charitable, big-hearted, munificent father, grandfather, and great- grandfather who passed away peacefully in his childhood home in Everett, MA. He had a love for people that matched no other and spread through all areas of his life. Raised in East Boston, he moved to Everett with his family in ’29. He graduated from EHS in 1941. As a young child, a neighborhood boy, Martin Phillips, invited Stan to go model flying with him and his father—this sparked a lifelong passion for designing and building model airplanes. As his love for aviation grew, he competed in at the Jordan Marsh-Boston Traveler Junior Aviation League (JAL) con- test with his best friend Harry Keshishian, during high school in the late 1930s—he claimed fifth place over the Flying Scale Model and came in first with overall scale points.

After high school, a church member hired Stan to work in his sheet metal shop, Tienen-Tongnen. There they made ductwork for the Navy, spinning for MIT, and made aluminum discs for RADAR in submarines. He did a lot of aluminum welding, which was also new at the time.

In 1942, members of JAL were invited to use their expertise in designing model airplanes to aid in the Navy’s model plane building program at Langley Memorial Aeronautical Laboratory in Virginia. He would use the skills and knowledge he had learned so far, to aid in research done by MIT airplane designing model wings that helped to increase the speed and aeronautics of these models in a wind tunnel, among other activities. On November 19, 1942, he enlisted in the U.S. Army at Fort Devens in MA and would send his paycheck back to Ruth, his mother, to help make mortgage payments. His tour with the 903 rd Air Engineer Squadron included Scotland, England, France, Belgium, Germany, Holland. He would meet his life-long wife in Germany at a park outside of a local Lutheran church after one of his fellow soldiers had passed. They would write letters delivered by another fellow soldier. In later years, Stan would propose to Elsbeth through a letter and he sent her engagement ring over in a bag of flour!

Prior to their engagement, he went to the New England Aircraft School from ’46- ’48 and completed classes to become a Master Mechanic. Stanley and Elsbeth married in 1948 at Bethlehem Lutheran Church in Everett, which started their lifelong journey together in the Church. He taught Sunday School, was an altar guild, served on the church council, and was a greeter at First Lutheran Church of Malden, MA. On May 17, 1994, Stan and his wife were award Lay Persons of the Year. Once dis- charged from the Army, he worked at General Steele in Everett making grocery carts and could make up to 24 per hour, more than many of his colleagues!

After being discharged from the Army, he would find himself being arrested for trespassing at Hanscom Field Air Base, where he went looking for someone to help straighten out some misfiled discharge paperwork. He would be offered a job on the Hanscom Airforce Base from a fellow soldier who knew him during the war. In 1951, he was called to serve in the Korean War, this time to the Ninth Airforce as part of the Army Airforce—he moved his wife and eldest son to New Mexico and again worked on models. He returned to Hanscom Airforce base after the Korean War and worked there until the base closed in 1973. In 1978, he would come to work at a sheet metal shop at the Lincoln Lab in Bedford creating J-Stars and weather balloons. Here he would remain until 1985 when he retired to painting houses in his early sixties.

Stan snuck into his first Everett High football game as a teenager, Everett beat an undefeated Malden team with a 6-0 upset. He attended Patriots and Everett High School football games with his family—even when temperatures were in the single digits— where he watched many youth kids grow up over the years. He attended his last EHS game in 2020, unfortunately, the basketball teams had lost. Whether it was basketball, football, baseball, or hockey he loved cheering for the Boston teams in the playoffs or even when they were not at their high points; he was a true Boston sports fan.

He flew as President and co-founder of the New England Wakefield (NEWG) outdoor model club, founded in 1953. He spent much of his retirement caring for his grandchildren. He enjoyed attending their sporting events and becoming a grandfather figure to many of their friends. After he retired, he concentrated on his model flying, which gave him time to bond early in retirement with his family. He attend- ed 3 AMA National Championships meets—he placed five times, including one first place. He was a member of SAM 7 (Society of Antique Modeler) in CT; during his retirement years, he was the club free flight high point champion nineteen times. He went to one Sam Nation- al Championship and placed fifth.

In lieu of flowers, donations in Stanley’s memory may be made to the AMA Programs Fund at http://www.modelaircraft. org/donate or mail to 5161 E Memorial Drive, Muncie, IN 47302. In accordance with the CDC, MA Dept. of Public Health, and local restrictions, masks must be worn at all times inside the funeral home with social distancing practices.

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