George Stanley McGovern, 1922 - 2012

portrait of George McGovern
Photo by Warren K. Leffler, U.S. News & World Report (30 June 1972)
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Born: 19 July 1922, Avon, South Dakota
Died: 21 October 2012, Sioux Falls, South Dakota

McGovern grew up at nearby Mitchell. He lost a high school debate to Eleanor Stegeberg, married her in 1943. He graduated from Dakota Wesleyan University, took private flying lessons to overcome his fear of heights, then joined the Civilian Pilot Training Program before enlisting in the Army Air Force. He flew his B-24 bomber, named Dakota Queen, in 35 missions over enemy territory. After the war he went to seminary, was ordained as a Methodist minister, but left the ministry to take a PhD in history at Northwestern University at Evanston, Illinois. He returned to Dokata Weslayan as a professor of history. He was an active supporter of Henry Wallace and the Progressive Party in 1948, became a Democrat after hearing Adlai Stevenson in 1952. He served two terms in the House (1956-1960), served as director of Kennedy's Food for Peace program, then won a Senate seat in 1962 which he held for three terms. He ran for president on an anti-war platform against Richard Nixon in 1972, losing in the most lopsided electoral defeat in modern history. Since leaving the Senate in 1980 he has taught history and campaigned for international food programs.

Biography from Wikipedia and The New York Times obituary

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