Veterans Day

DAYS GONE BY: Harry Sjulson, a 100-year-old WWII veteran, shared memories of his time serving in the United States military.

One-hundred-year-old Harry Sjulson, one of the very few World War II veterans still around, recently reflected on his time in occupied Japan.

Sjulson, who currently resides at the Fergus Falls Veterans Home, said he and a friend both enlisted.

”At the time of the Pearl Harbor bombing a friend of mine by the name of Gordon Westerberg and I tried to enlist in the navy. He was accepted and I was not. Before enlisting I was working in the aircraft factories that built the B-24 bombers. ,” said Hjulson.

Sjulson said he was stationed in occupied Japan working the ordinances division, “At the end of the war, I think the atomic bomb served a purpose because it saved a lot of Japanese and American lives. That was felt to be necessary, because invading the mainland of Japan would have created millions and millions of losses of life.”

Sjulson also thinks the war was forced upon the U.S. but it also left a lot of damaged lives that the generation needed to straighten things out in the world.

Sjulson also reflected on the fact that the war delayed his marriage.

According to U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs statistics, only 240,329 of the 16 million Americans who served in World War II are alive in 2021.

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