Maple man’s service honored during flag raisingA Flag of Honor flies Friday for a Maple man who served his country as a member of the U.S. Coast Guard during World War II.
A Flag of Honor flies Friday for a Maple man who served his country as a member of the U.S. Coast Guard during World War II.
The flag is raised at 9 a.m. Friday in front of the Richard I. Bong Veterans Historical Center for Hugo J. Anttila.
Anttila was born in South Dakota. When he was a teenager, he decided to move to Wisconsin and began a career of sailing the Great Lakes. Anttila did this for a few years and then went to driving a delivery truck for the Co-op stores between Superior and Michigan. While in that profession, he met and married Ellen Koivu of Maple. They built a home in Maple and farmed, gardened and enjoyed the outdoors. The Anttilas had four children — Doris (Anttila) Perala, John Anttila, Dennis Anttila (deceased) and Doreen (Anttila) Swanson.
Hugo Anttila eventually went back to his original profession, sailing the Great Lakes. He also entered military service with the U.S. Coast Guard, 1942-1945, attaining the rank of Lt., Junior Grade. During that time, Anttila was assigned to a ship that guarded the waters around the Twin Ports of Duluth and Superior, and up along the shore. He was very proud to serve his country.
After receiving an honorable discharge he returned to sailing the Great Lakes. Anttila and retired after 33 years of sailing the Great Lakes for Columbia Transportation Company. He was extremely proud to have sailed for so many years and that he was instrumental in motivating and helping other eager young men who wanted to become sailors as well.
Anttila’s family is very proud of him and especially proud to have the flag raised in his honor Friday. He would have been proud as well.
The flag-raising event is free and open to the public.
Information about Anttila will be displayed in the center lobby through the following Friday. Every week a flag is lofted outside the center to honor a deceased military veteran. For more information on the “Flags of Honor” program, call John Vaski, 715-394-7693, Scott Markle, 218-269-4675 or firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com or leave a message at 715-392-7151.