Mott men enrolled in ND WWII Victory Roll Call

The ND WWII Victory Roll Call project is an attempt to locate and thank all World War II veterans who are currently living in North Dakota as well as those who entered service from North Dakota and are now living elsewhere on the occasion of the 70th Anniversary of their Victory in WWII.

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The ND WWII Victory Roll Call project is an attempt to locate and thank all World War II veterans who are currently living in North Dakota as well as those who entered service from North Dakota and are now living elsewhere on the occasion of the 70th Anniversary of their Victory in WWII.

There are an estimated 1869 WWII veterans in ND, according to Veterans Administration records. According to further calculations by the ND Census Office, there may be as many as 14 WWII veterans residing in Hettinger County. Only two have registered so far.

Technician 4th Grade (Sergeant) Henry “Red” Watson, Mott, served in the US Army Infantry in the 86th Black Hawk Division which fought through Germany from March–June 1945. The Division was aboard ship in the Leyte Gulf awaiting the invasion of Japan when the war ended. Watson will be celebrating his 96th birthday on Dec. 12th.

Sergeant Lynn Dill, Mott, served in the US Army Infantry from May 1945 to December 1946 as part of the Army of Occupation in Japan. Dill’s 89th birthday was Nov 6th.

The ND WWII Victory Celebration kicked off with the Governor’s Proclamation on the 70th Anniversary of V-J Day. The Victory Program and Dance was held last month in Bismarck. A crowd of over 650 attended the event, including 120 WWII veterans from across the state, who entertained the crowd with talent from within their own ranks. The 188th Army Band, Fargo, played patriotic concert band music as well as Glenn Miller’s “In the Mood” as two WWII sailors in uniform and their partners demonstrated dance moves from the 1940’s. A short YouTube video of the dance is available courtesy of the Bismarck Tribune at youtu.be/qQxukJyGfKo

The goal for North Dakota’s 70th anniversary observance is to locate and thank all living WWII veterans in the state or who entered service from ND and now reside elsewhere. This historic roster will include all WWII veterans from the Army, Army Air Corps, Navy, Marines and Coast Guard, as well as those who served in the Merchant Marines, Nurse Cadet Corps, and anyone who participated in home front activities such as “Rosies” or those who supervised bond sales, recycling centers or civil defense. The Victory Roll Call roster will become an historic document on file at the ND Historical Society archives. Written stories or journals are welcome. All who register will receive a letter of appreciation from Governor Dalrymple.

“These men and women quite literally saved the world,” said organizer Shirley Olgeirson. “The 70th anniversary of their victory is a great time to say ‘Thanks’!”

Registration will continue until the end of this year. WWII veterans or their family representative may download a simple questionnaire at the website www.ndwwiivictoryceleb.wix.com/victory; write to Victory Roll Call, PO Box 1111, Bismarck, ND 58502; email ndwwiivictorycelebration@outlook.com; or phone the Victory Hotline to leave call back information at 701-333-2064.

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