Kossuth County

Frank Erickson



St. Benedict Boy is Busy Man at Front in Italy

Frank Erickson, a St. Benedict youth, is a member of a Fifth Army group in Italy which serves 20,000 drinks a day to soldiers, with nobody from the W.C.T.U. or an anti-saloon league around to object, though even if there were, they would approve, and highly, for the drinks are plain water—not a drop of booze in sight.

Like threshers or other harvest gangs, soldiers have to have drinks (water) often, and it takes so much water that the army has to assign groups to get the water, free it of possible contamination, and serve it at their own “bar,” wherever that may be.  Their “saloon” has to be open 24 hours daily.  They are always located near a spring or creek if they can find one, but presumably they sometimes have to dispense hauled drinks.

Water is Purified.
When the group finds a supply, no matter whether muddy or contaminated, they draw up the water through a mobile chlorinator and sifter or filter into a canvas tank holding 3000 gallons.  Then trucks take the water in 5-gallon cans to the fighting or other soldiers wherever they may be.

The water also gets what the “water tenders” call “Ph” tests.  Frank has written home that the boys don’t know what that may mean to a chemist, but they don’t care as long as it makes the water safe for their “customers.”

Frank’s sister, Mrs. Perry Torine, has a clipping from a Minnesota daily paper giving the fore-going information and naming one of the water groups, including Frank.

Mother, Sisters, Brothers.
Frank has three other sisters:  Mrs. John Shay and Mrs. Ben Brink, Bancroft, and Mrs. Ray Olson, Mason City; Eugene and Fred Erickson, St. Benedict; Floyd Erickson, Algona, are Frank’s brothers, and Frank and Fred are twins.  All are children of the late Herman Erickson and of his wife, Mrs. Carrie Erickson, the latter now a patient and seriously sick at the Kossuth hospital.

Frank’s address, in case any of his friends desire further information concerning his brand of booze, which is very scarce at Iowa state liquor stores, is care of the New York postmaster and can be secured from members of his family.

Source: Kossuth County Advance, August 10, 1944