Alvin H. Knutson, 82, died in December 16, 2003. John and Pat Erwin of Reno, Nevada, stopped in Victorville, California, where Al lived, to call on him and were informed of his passing. Al was born September 15, 1921.
Al “Swede” Knutson, a resident of Keeler, was a 1940 Hartford High School graduate who starred in Varsity Football, Basketball and Baseball the four years he was in high school. He preferred the name “Swede” in days before such references were considered insensitive or politically incorrect. He was a tough competitor and a hard-hitting lineman with Hartford’s gridiron eleven.
After graduation Al volunteered for service in the United States Marine Corps and was on active duty when the United States was plunged into World War II by the sneak early Sunday morning attack on Hawaii’s Pearl Harbor by the Japanese Imperial Navy. He fought a series of Pacific Island campaigns including bloody hand-to-hand encounters on Tarawa and Saipan as a member of the Marines illustrious Second Division. In keeping with Marine Corps policy he was granted a one-month R and R (Rest and Recuperation) leave upon completing two full years of combat duty. After spending his leave in Keeler, he returned to the Pacific where he served until war’s end. Amazingly, he completed his combat tours without being wounded.
After leaving the Corps (once a Marine, always a Marine) he decided to remain in California, married, raised his family, making his career there.
No further details available at this time.