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Military Museum honors Norwegian-American WWII fighter

CAMP RIPLEY--The Minnesota Military Museum is featuring Pfc. George Ingebretsen of Minneapolis in their Featured Veteran Exhibit through Aug. 31, according to a news release from the museum.

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Pfc. George Ingebretsen of Minneapolis

CAMP RIPLEY-The Minnesota Military Museum is featuring Pfc. George Ingebretsen of Minneapolis in their Featured Veteran Exhibit through Aug. 31, according to a news release from the museum.

George was born Ingval Ingebretsen on June 7, 1912 in Stavanger, Norway. He immigrated to the U.S. when he was 17, joining his aunt and uncle in North Dakota before moving to Iowa. Ingval volunteered for the Army in March 1942, training with the 385th Regiment in Texas. During training, he became an American citizen on Aug. 25, 1942 and changed his name to George. George left the 385th to join the 99th Infantry Battalion, which had just been activated at Camp Ripley. Made up of Norwegians and Norwegian Americans, the 99th was created for a possible invasion of Nazi-occupied Norway. After training at Camp Hale, Colo., in preparation for Norway's rugged terrain, the 99th deployed to Europe. They fought across northern France and in the Battle of the Bulge. After V-E Day, the 99th was sent to Norway as part of the 474th Regiment. They were welcomed as heroes, marching in parades and serving as King Haakon VII's Honor Guard upon his return from exile. While there, George fell in love and married a Norwegian girl, Signe Borghild. Returning to the U.S., they made their home in Minneapolis, where he worked as a machinist and she as a bindery worker at Augsburg Publishing House. They had no children, but remained happily married until his death on April 20, 1997. She survived him by 20 years, and passed away April 4, 2017. They are buried together at Fort Snelling National Cemetery.

The public is invited to view the exhibit on Ingebretsen along with all the exhibits in the Minnesota Military Museum. The museum exhibits artifacts and stories from all branches of the military from frontier days to the present. During summer hours, the museum is open daily 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Current featured exhibits include "Minnesota Voices from Vietnam" and "In the Fight: Minnesota and the First World War".

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