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Merchant Marine honored for WWII service

An Arnold, Minn. man is honored Friday with a flag raising ceremony.

A Flag of Remembrance will fly for Louis “Louie” Albert Alvar, a member of the United States Merchant Marines.

Born July 16, 1922, Alvar lived in the small community of Arnold just outside of Duluth. The son of Swedish immigrants, Henning and Ida Alvar, he was the youngest of six children. He graduated from Arnold School and worked various jobs until World War II.

Alvar joined the United State Merchant Marines in 1942, assigned to transport supplies to the European Theater. After surviving the war, he was honorably discharged in 1946.

After his military service, Louis returned to Minnesota and married Alice Jeanette Schultz on Sept. 16, 1946. The couple raised five children. Alvar worked as a skilled machinist until his death Aug. 18, 1984, residing at the same homestead where he was born. His wife Alice passed away May 9, 2014.

Four years after Louie’s death — in 1988 — the United States Merchant Marines finally received veterans status. For that reason, Alvar’s service to country will be honored at 9 a.m. Friday at the Richard I. Bong Veterans Historical Center. Louie’s United States burial flag will be raised with the Richard I. Bong American Legion Post 435 Honor Guard present to salute his military service and to commemorate the 30th anniversary of his death. The event is free and open to the public.

For information about the “Flag of Remembrance Program,” contact John Vaski at 715-394-7693 or Scott Markle at 218-269-4675. Leave a message at the Richard I Bong Veterans Historical Center at 715-392-7151 or email info@ or