Leslie "Les" Elias Nicholas Eskola

Leslie "Les" Elias Nicholas Eskola served during World War II in the Pacific Theater.

He entered the U.S. Army on July 24, 1943at Fort Snelling, Minn. and was honorably discharged on January 31, 1946. He served as a combat Infantryman and rose to the rank of Technical Sergeant.

His advanced infantry training was with Company E, 275th Infantry Regiment, 70th Infantry Division, Camp Adair, Oregon. In May 1944, he was assigned to Company B, 163rd Infantry Regiment, 41st Infantry Division from Replacement Depot Oro Bay, New Guinea, Pacific Theater.

His first combat patrol was on Biak Island, Netherland East Indies. His Philippine duty included Mindoro, Mindinao, the Zamboanga landing and the Jolo Sulu landing (two assault landings); he celebrated his 20th birthday on a landing craft in the Philippines. He served with the Occupation Forces in Japan on Honshu Island from October 1945 until January 1946. He rode out a typhoon near the Ruykyu Islands.

Mr. Eskola was awarded the Bronze Star Medal, Combat Infantryman Badge, Asiatic-Pacific Campaign Medal with bronze battle star and two (2) bronze arrowheads, Philippine Liberation Medal with bronze campaign star and Army of Occupation Service Medal (Japan)

He was born on March 9, 1925, in Eveleth, Minnesota. He was the son of Matias N. and Suoma S. Eskola. He graduated from Eveleth High School.

He died on Wednesday, February 13, 2008, in Duluth, Minnesota.

Source: Source: Hometown Heroes: The St. Louis County World War II Project. 78. and Duluth News Tribune, February 14, 2008. 

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