Deceased as of 1995 from Diabetes complication
Lewis Nixon was born in September 30, 1918, in New York City. He was the grandson of Lewis Nixon I, the last man to design a battleship as an individual. He went to Yale in 1926 and to the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. He went to become owner of his family's Nixon Nitration Works.
In 1941, he enlisted in the Army at Fort Dix, New Jersey, and completed basic training at Camp Croft, South Carolina. He then attended Officers Candidate School at Fort Benning. There he met Richard Winters. He left a 2nd Lieutenant, and was assigned duty at Fort Ord, California attached to a MP (Military Police) unit.
He joined the Paratroopers early on along with Winters, and was assigned to Easy Company, 2nd Battalion, 506th Parachute Infantry Regiment, 101st Airborne Division as commander of 2nd Platoon. He was placed under the command of 1st Lieutenant Herbert Sobel. Sobel was strict; Nixon said to his friend Winters that he reminded him of his headmaster at school.
Around training, Nixon was moved to Battalion staff (apparently as a request to get away from Sobel), and was made S-2. He then earned his jumpwings at Fort Benning, and completed the rest of his training at Camp Mackall. He and his unit were later sent to Aldbourne, England.
On June 6, 1944, he dropped off at Normandy D-Day part of Operation Overlord, and manged to link up with battallion headquarters. Here he was given a map detailing all the German artillery positions in Normandy, and, realising its importance, ran 3 miles to Utah beach to pass it up the chain of command. Command was so thrilled with the map, that they sent the first two tanks to land at Utah beach to aid the 101st, providing Nixon a ride back to battallion headquarters.
At Operation Market Garden, part of the allied plan to recapture Holland, he was nearly killed by a stray shot which glanced the side of his helmet, lightly burning the side of his head. During the Operation, Nixon got drunk, and had to pee, and used the water pitcher. Next morning, he was hungover, and Winters was unable to wake him, so he dumped the contents of the pitcher on him, thinking it was water, but realizing it was his pee. Nixon was upset, but he and Winters laughed about it. Later on he was promoted to Captain, and was made Regimental S-2.
At the Battle of Bulge, he received a telegram, which could send him to the States. He didn't want to go saying that he has lived the States and wants to stay in Europe, but he told Winters that he could give it to 1st Lt. Peacock, who was a new officer that was deemed "Too G.I." and unpopular with the Company.
He then participated in the occupation of Germany. He was made the focus of his own episode which was set there and was called "Why We Fight". He was eventually busted back to Battalion S-2, because he was out drinking more than doing his duties. During the occupation, he got a letter saying his wife divorced him, and that she was taking their son, and the dog, which left him mad saying "It's my dog!".
They eventually came to a concentration camp, which revealed to Nixon and the men the horrors of the Holocaust, and showing him why they were fighting. They eventually captured "Hitler's Eagle's Nest", and the war ended after that, Nixon not having fired a single shot. Nixon eventually broke into Herman Goering's store room and was full with alcohol. Nixon drank the bottles as a end of the war celebration.
After the war, Nixon married Grace Umezawa in 1956, and gave up alcoholism. He and Winters remained good friends all their lives. Winters was best man at his wedding to Grace. They lived Grace's hilltop home in Sherman Oaks, CA until his death. In 1995, he died of complication of Diabetes.
Nixon is a friendly, easy-going officer who was described by Winters as "A free spirit who enjoyed the wild life and partied with the best of them."
CIB (Combat Infantryman Badge)
Parachutist Badge with 3 combat stars
American Defense Medal
European African Middle Eastern Campaign Ribbon with 3 Battle Starts and a Bronze Arrowhead
World War Two Victory Medal
World War Two Army of Occupation Award with Germany Clasp
French Croix de Gueire (Cross of Valor(?))
Presidential Unit Citation with Bronze Oak Leaf
5 Overseas Service Stripes
Ruptured Duck Patch (WWII Discharge Patch)