Army mechanic remembers time in the war

A WELL-KNOWN community member and veteran celebrated his 95th birthday recently.

OTTO LINDSTROM proudly displays his medals from the Second World War. He’s most proud of the one hanging by itself as it is recognition from another country.

A WELL-KNOWN community member and veteran celebrated his 95th birthday recently.

Otto Lindstrom celebrated with friends and family at the local legion Oct. 29 at the annual legion Veterans’ Dinner – his actual birthday is Oct. 26.

And that comes after a long life filled with events, including his time in the army and the Second World War.

He spent six-and-a-half years in the army from 1937 to 1945.

“You name it. I was there,” said Lindstrom.

Lindstrom served as a mechanic in the artillery in London, Sicily, Italy, France and  Holland during the Second World War.

“It was fun,” he said.

Service medals he wears include volunteer service medals, three stars for Italy and the one he’s most proud of – the medal he wears on the right side of his uniform that is from Holland.

“That’s my proudest one because it’s from a foreign country,” he said.

It’s for the liberation of Holland, which is the country he was in when the war ended.

His military career started when he was looking for a job and  was told to get the job he wanted, he had to join up, so he did.

“The whole story is they were building a fort on Ridley Island and to work in the fort they said you had to be enrolled. [in the army] So I joined and went to work the next morning,” he said.

Lindstrom went to Shiloh Manitoba as a mechanic and instructor for two years and then to England for a year, also to instruct, and he also joined the First Division Artillery.

“I just got there in time to go to Sicily,” he said.

Tough days in the war include the battle in Ortona, Italy.

“It was, you can’t describe that really,” he said about how bad things were there.

During his time as forward observation for the artillery, he and the division were under fire a lot, but he was never wounded.

“I never got a mark on me,” he said, adding he credits that to having a “good boss.”

He served as a corporal all the way through the war – he was offered a  promotion but didn’t want it.

“I had a chance to go up and turned it down,” he said. “If I’d gone up in rank, I would’ve had to stay in Aldershot [England] for the duration of the war and there was no way I was staying there.”

Working as a mechanic for the artillery during the war was a good job, he said.

After all his travels around the world, he doesn’t intend to leave his home in Terrace anymore.

“It’s home,” he said. “I don’t intend to go anywhere.”

Just Posted

Terrace & District Chamber of Commerce celebrates big win for LNG

Federal government moves on recommendation to provide relief on steel duties

Terrace resolutions on liquor tax, childcare to be presented at UBCM

City of Terrace agenda takes aim at provincial ‘downloading’

All Nations Driving Academy gets $360K boost from province

Terrace-based driving school bridges gap in services for remote northwest B.C. communities

Skeena Watershed reopened for recreational pink and coho

Four sections and tributaries remain closed

Skeena Voices | Happy campers

Arizona couple celebrates 20 years of summer camping on Ferry Island

VIDEO: Langley Ribfest met with protesters

Groups that oppose the event for various reasons plan to be on site each of the three days.

Canadians killed in Afghanistan honoured during emotional dedication ceremony

One-hundred-fifty-eight Canadian soldiers died during the mission

It’s snow joke: Up to 30 cm of snow expected to fall in northeastern B.C.

Alaska Highway, Fort Nelson to be hit with August snowstorm, according to Environment Canada

‘I’m just absolutely disgusted’: Husband furious after B.C. Mountie’s killer gets day parole

Kenneth Fenton was sentenced to prison after he fatally struck Const. Sarah Beckett’s cruiser

Sea-to-Sky Gondola in B.C. likely out of commission until 2020

Sea to Sky Gondola carries between 1,500 and 3,000 people every day during the summer season

Helicopter-riding dog Mr. Bentley now featured on cans of new B.C.-made beer

Partial proceeds from every pack go to Children’s Wish

PHOTOS: Weapons seized at Portland right-wing rally, counterprotests

Not all who gathered Saturday were with right-wing groups or antifa

Discussion on grief and loss between Stephen Colbert, Anderson Cooper goes viral

The exchange includes emotional question from Cooper, and outlook on grief as a child

Toronto activist calling on federal parties to nominate more black candidates

Fewer than 20 black Canadians have been nominated so far, including some Liberal MPs seeking re-election

Most Read