m a r k e r i c k s o n p a i n t i n g s Frank Severin Erickson Ernest Julius Erickson Andrew Anders Sebran Erickson American Expeditionary Force 1918 - 1919 Out West & North Dakota
This is an impressive and historic family treasure. Pvt. Frank Severin Erickson's 1918 Lost Battalion Commendation that includes his Silver Star and World War I Victory Meuse Argonne Medals. It was written by Major General Robert Alexander and signed by Frank's Commanding officer Captain William J. Cullen. Reading this still affects me like it did the first time I read as a child.
In it's own right an important object to the family and no doubts contributes in the extension of the myth of Frank Erickson to me and others in the family. Resting safely in the hands of my cousin, who is also a grandson of Frank, Michael Boutrous of Bismarck, North Dakota. It hangs framed on the wall of his home. It could not be in a better place. Michael highly regards the family history and I know will keep this safe and enjoy it.
Frank served in the American Expeditionary Force with the 308th Infantry and was a runner / rifleman with Company H. The medals awarded to Frank are specific to his actions and service during the Meuse Argonne Offensive in the Argonne Forest, France from September 26th thru November 11th, 1918.
In a narrow period of time in early October of 1918, Frank and a handful of Company H (308th Infantry) became fortunate surviving members of the infamous "Lost Battalion." Frank along with the other survivors are shown below in a photograph standing not far from the area they had escaped out of the pocket in the Argonne on October 8th, 1918.
The commander, Major Charles Whittlesey of the 1st Battalion, 308th Infantry Regiment can be seen standing on the far left.
Also below is a superb photograph of Frank (laying on ground, smoking a pipe) after the Meuse Argonne Offensive. The final image is a beauty of studio portrait of Frank dressed in his military best, cool as any Hollywood film star could ever dream to be.
Adding all this up one has to be impressed. The stories, the myths and the truths intertwine into a fascinating time of my grandfather Frank's life.
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