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Don Berg displays his copy of the 1952 Life magazine article telling the story of the Beirut-Jiddah Airlift, in which nearly 4,000 stranded Muslims were brought by military aircraft from Beirut, Lebanon, to Jiddah in Saudi Arabia, as part of their pilgrimage to Mecca. Photo by Vicki Gerdes, Detroit Lakes Record

Area man helped stranded pilgrims in 1952

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It was while Hawley native Don Berg was stationed with the U.S. Air Force in Frankfurt, Germany that he and a fellow airman were awakened at 6 a.m. on a Sunday morning in August 1952 for a special assignment.


The assignment was so secretive that Berg wasn’t given many details — all he knew was that it was his job to alert all the flight personnel of the 1602 Air Transport Wing to report for duty.

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Vicki Gerdes
Staff writer at Detroit Lakes Newspapers for the past 14 years, currently editor of the entertainment and community pages as well as obituaries. Living in DL with my cat, Smokey.
(218) 844-1454