Edward Monroe Scott was a senior at Oregon State University studying forestry when World War II started. He enlisted in the U.S. Army Air Corps in the spring of 1941 and trained as a fighter pilot. He was sent to Europe and stationed in Sicily, Italy. On October 17, 1943, Edward's plane was hit and severely damaged. He tried to navigate to a nearby landing strip but crashed while attempting to land and did not survive. In a letter his mother penned to a relative earlier that month, she wrote that the last update she received, though she hadn't heard from Edward in three weeks, was that he was in Sicily. She announced in her letter that she had since received a notice from the War Department announcing that Edward received an air medal for "repeated and meritorious conduct." The letter from the War Department also explained that Edward would be home for Christmas. Edward's plane went down just days after this letter was written.