Danish WW2 Pilots

SSgt Christian Wejby Pedersen

(1920 - 1979)

Christian W. Pedersen was born in Løkken, Denmark, in 1920 but emigrated with his parents to the United States at the age of three. He enlisted in the US Army Air Corps just after the outbreak of war in Europe in 1939. He served in the USAAF for more than 30 years.

Christian Wejby Pedersen was born on 11 April 1920 in Løkken, Denmark, to fischerman Jens Wejby Pedersen and Ane Hedevig Kirstine Pedersen (née Knudsen).[1]

Emigrating to the United States

The family emigrated to the United States in 1923. Pedersen’s father arrived to New York on 22 January 1923 onboard the SS Oscar II, [2] and Pedersen and his mother followed ten months later, arriving New York from Copenhagen onboard the SS Frederik VIII on 24 October 1923. [3] The family settled in Chicago, Illinois.

Pedersen’s father—and with him Pedersen and his mother—was naturalised on 10 October 1939 (certificate no. 4668846).[4]

In US Air Force Service

Pedersen graduated from Lane Technical High School in Chicago and, in late 1939/early 1940, he volunteered for the Army Air Corps. He was send overseas in 1942. [5] In August 1943, he was stationed in Italy as a Staff Sergeant. The exact location is not known.[6]

Immediately after the war, Pedersen was employed by American Airways. He married Alice Pedersen, who he had met in the Danish-American Athletic Club, [7] in California on 17 December 1945. [8] Her brother, Ove O. Pedersen had served with the US Navy (VMD-254) in the Pacific.

He reenlisted in the Army Air Force on 27 June 1946 and remained in the Air Force advancing to chief master sergeant until retiring on 30 June 1972.[9]


[1] DNA: Parish register, Furreby Sogn.

[2] Ancestry: Illinois, Federal Naturalization Records, 1840-1991.

[3] Ancestry: New York Passenger Lists, 1820-1957.

[4] Illinois, U.S., Federal Naturalization Records, 1856-1991.

[5] Den Danske Pioneer, 3 September 1942, p. 7.

[6] Den Danske Pioneer, 26 August 1943, p. 7.

[7] Den Danske Pioneer, 20 December 1945, p. 7.

[8] Ancestry: California, County Birth, Marriage, and Death Records, 1849-1980.

[9] Ancestry: U.S., Department of Veterans Affairs BIRLS Death File, 1850-2010.