Date of Interview
Fritjof "Fritz" Lokensgard was born on 20 November 1911 in the small farming community of Hanley Falls, Yellow Medicine County, Minnesota. The youngest of eleven children of Norwegian immigrant parents (his father, a Lutheran minister, was born 1853 in Norway), he attended local schools, graduating from Hanley Falls High School in 1929. Fritz graduated from St. Olaf College, Northfield, Minnesota, in 1933, and then decided on a career in the ministry; he moved to St. Paul for Luther Seminary, completed this program, and was ordained a minister in 1937. Between 1937 and 1942, he got married (wife Maxine), started a family (three children), and served congregations in Belfield and Hettinger, two small communities in western North Dakota. With the US entry into World War II, at age thirty-one, Fritz decided to join the US Navy as a chaplain. After chaplain school, he served at Great Lakes Naval Training Center (Mar - Dec 1943); and at a naval aircraft depot at Ponam, in the Admiralty Islands (Jan 1944 - Aug 1945). Fritz spent the remainder of his active duty, until September 1946, at a Coast Guard facility in New York City. He remained in the Reserves after discharge. Again a civilian, Fritz was re-united with his family, and served churches in Humboldt, Iowa (1946-53) and Glendive, Montana (1953-57) before returning to chaplain duties at the Veterans Administration hospitals in Fargo, North Dakota (1957-65) and Minneapolis (1965-79). In retirement he moved to Bloomington, Minnesota, where this interview took place.
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Saylor, Thomas, "Oral History Project World War II Years, 1941-1946 - Fritz Lokensgard" (2003). Oral History Project: World War II Years, 1941-1946. 123.