Walter Brower, local citizen and decorated military veteran of three wars (WWII, Korea, Vietnam), passed away on July 11, 2018, at the young age of 98. His darling wife, Margaret, recently reached out to MAVericks to see if we might be interested in inheriting some of Walt’s old tools. What we gained was so much more…a dear friend, a fascinating story, and a proud legacy.
To put it bluntly, Walt Brower was the epitome of the “Greatest Generation.” He fought in three wars. He served his nation in uniform for nearly 30 years, first as an enlisted man and then as an officer. In World War II, Walt flew fighter aircraft in North Africa, taught photo reconnaissance to French pilots, and at war’s end catalogued over 50 German and Japanese aircraft, many of them experimental. In that role, he personally met and escorted “the” Orville Wright! For the Korean conflict, Walt kept planes flying by performing depot maintenance in mainland Japan, and then transitioned to the maintaining of Titan missiles after hostilities in Korea ceased. At the culmination of his Air Force career, having accumulated over 5,000 flying hours and numerous military decorations, to include the Distinguished Flying Cross, Walt retired in 1972 to Monument, Colorado, where he continued to serve as a realtor and jack-of-all-trades. He was a true American hero with the background of both an operator and maintainer…he loved to fly and he loved to fix things. As such, he amassed a respectable collection of tools…
Fast forward to 2019. Margaret, still grieving the loss of her beloved Walt, sorted through both the memories and the belongings, but didn’t want either to go to just anyone. So, for Walt’s tools, she asked if MAVericks was willing to be their next caretakers. From Walt’s 1950s-era wood plane to his modern-day power sander, these tools of the trade are once again in the hands of military veterans as they build post-military careers. As a disabled-veteran-owned company with a mission of helping military vets transition into the civilian sector, this is both a practical contribution and a humbling honor. A fitting gift, for certain.
MAVericks is proud to salute Walt and Margaret Brower for their years of honorable and selfless service, as well as the example they’ve set for the rest of us. So, in honor of Walt and at his request, we commit to heed this Airman’s plea…“take care my friend, watch your six, and do one more roll…just for me” (CAPT Jerry Coffee, USN, POW-Hanoi, Vietnam, 1968).