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Glenn A. Thornberg Oral History


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Biographical Information:

Glenn A. Thornberg, born in 1922, resided in Minneapolis, Minnesota both before and after his time in World War II. Thornberg joined the National Guard in 1940 and was then inducted into the military in February 1941. Thornberg was a member of the Red Bull 34th Infantry Division and the 175th Field Artillery Battalion serving in both Ireland and North Africa. Thornberg was injured in action during his campaign in Africa against the German 88th and was discharged. Thornberg was awarded a Silver Star and a Purple Heart for his actions in Africa. After the war, Thornberg was married twice to Marion and Vivian. He had five children – Mary, Connie, Patricia, Bill, and Tom. Thornberg died on July 20, 2002 and buried at Fort Snelling National Cemetery.

Transcript Summary:

In an interview conducted on December 27, 1990, Glenn A. Thornberg discussed his experiences in the Civilian Conservation Corps during the late 1930. Those experiences influenced him to join the National Guard and then the active military services shortly after. Thornberg’s military career took him to Ireland where he volunteered for the Rangers and spoke highly of the British officers that trained him. Later, Thornberg left the Rangers to rejoin the 175th Field Artillery Battalion shortly before they were stationed in Africa. Thornberg detailed the unit’s first meeting with the Free French troops as well as their initial action against German troops. Thornberg described how he and two others discovered the location German 88th unit where he was wounded. After discharge, Thornberg chronicled his journey home, the army hospitals within the United States he was at, and his life after the Army. Thornberg said that since he was never a POW he does not suffer from the same ailments nor have nightmares. He did not regret his service and proud of his time in the military. But Thornberg did note that after his first 4th of July party when he returned to civilian life, he told his wife he would never go to another. The interview concluded with his perception of conflicts that have followed World War II - Korea, Vietnam, and the Gulf War.

Interview by David Overy


Image ID: 14298

See additional files below for full transcript.

14298_transcript.pdf (212 kB)
Glenn Thornberg oral history interview transcript

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