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Troolin, Ted

Document Type

Oral History

Date of Interview



Ted Troolin was born 20 November 1920 on a farm near Sandstone, Pine County, Minnesota, and lived in town during his youth. After graduating from Sandstone High School in 1938, he worked at Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC) camps in northern Minnesota during 1938-40 and held several jobs in town until early 1942, including as a laborer for the Minnesota Department of Transportation (MNDOT); in July of that year he enlisted in the US Navy and was sent to Great Lakes Naval Training Center in Chicago. Following Basic Training, Ted had additional schooling at bases in Florida and California, learning to be an aviation radio technician, before he was posted in late 1943 to the Aleutian Islands. After a brief period on Adak Island, Ted was on outpost duty on Umnak Island (November 1943 – July 1944) and at Dutch Harbor, Unalaska Island (July 1944 – May 1945). He flew occasional patrol missions in a PBY Catalina aircraft, and helped to operate radio facilities. In May 1945 Ted was transferred to Fleet Air Wing 8 and returned to the US mainland for re-training; he was in school in Minneapolis when the Pacific war ended in August 1945. In October Ted was discharged, and he returned to Minnesota. Ted worked for MnDOT after the war, in the surveying department, retiring in 1981 with 40 years of service. After many job-related moves in the 1940s and 1950s, Ted and his wife Lorain (married 1946) ultimately settled in Esko, Carlton County, Minnesota. Ted provides details on everyday life at a remote island outpost in the Aleutian Islands.


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Ted Troolin - Transcript.pdf (692 kB)
PDF Transcript of Interview with Ted Troolin