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Floyd Lindstrom, namesake for new VA clinic, won 2 awards for bravery in WWII

       It's finally official.
       The Department of Veterans Affairs Clinic on Fillmore Hill - opened last August - has been named after PFC Floyd K. Lindstrom, a local resident whose heroism in World War II earned him a posthumous Medal of Honor (the highest U.S. military decoration). Previously, he had been awarded a Silver Star (the third highest decoration) for a separate act of bravery.
       The bill formalizing the clinic's naming was passed by Congress this fall and signed into law by President Obama Dec. 16.
       According to a military citation quoted in a previous press release, Lindstrom received the Medal of Honor for his “conspicuous
Private First Class Floyd K. Lindstrom, 1912- 1943.
Courtesy of militarytimes.com
gallantry and intrepidity” in defeating a German counterattack almost single-handedly on a hill near Mignano, Italy, Nov. 11, 1943. He was killed in fighting three months later. He was 31 years old.
       Opened in August, the three-story, 76,731-square-foot facility at 3141 Centennial Blvd. had been temporarily called the Colorado Springs Community Based Outpatient Clinic (CBOC). It serves southern Colorado veterans, combining health care previously offered in scattered Colorado Springs locations with new offerings, including audiology, physical therapy, optometry and mental health. The naming legislation was the result of companion bills introduced about a year ago by Congressman Doug Lamborn (R-Colorado Springs) and Senator Mark Udall (D-Colorado).
       Lamborn described Lindstrom as “one of the Fifth Congressional District's - and the nation's - greatest heroes. He is buried in Colorado Springs at the Evergreen Cemetery and I can think of no one more deserving of this honor. I want to thank Brian Binn and the Colorado Springs CBOC Naming Committee and everyone else who worked so hard to make this happen.”
       According to a previous press release, Lindstrom's name was the unanimous choice of the CBOC Naming Committee, which had formed in early 2013 and sought public suggestions at that time.
       Born in Nebraska, Lindstrom grew up in the Springs, living for a time at the Myron Stratton Home with his mother Ana and sister Pauline. After graduating from Cheyenne Mountain High School in 1931, Lindstrom worked as a truck driver for 11 years.
       An undated Gazette article, cited on the Wikipedia website, states that before the war he dreamed of owning a ranch and was engaged to be married. But his fiancée died in early 1942, the article states. “Floyd was very hurt. Floyd would leave flowers on her grave on Easter and Decoration Day and would send money to have his mother Ana do it while he was in the Army.”
       Lindstrom enlisted in the Army in June 1942 and trained to become a machine-gunner. He served in North Africa before shipping out for Sicily and Italy.
       The text of Lindstrom's official Medal of Honor citation reads:
       “The President of the United States of America, in the name of Congress, takes pride in presenting the Medal of Honor (posthumously) to Private First Class Floyd K. Lindstrom (ASN: 37349634), United States Army, for conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at risk of life above and beyond the call of duty. On 11 November 1943, this soldier's platoon was furnishing machine-gun support for a rifle company attacking a hill near Mignano, Italy, when the enemy counterattacked, forcing the riflemen and half the machinegun platoon to retire to a defensive position. Pfc Lindstrom saw that his small section was alone and outnumbered 5 to 1, yet he immediately deployed the few remaining men into position and opened fire with his single gun. The enemy centered fire on him with machine gun, machine pistols and grenades. Unable to knock out the enemy nest from his original position, Pfc. Lindstrom picked up his own heavy machine gun and staggered 15 yards up the barren, rocky hillside to a new position, completely ignoring enemy small-arms fire which was striking all around him. From this new site, only 10 yards from the enemy machine gun, he engaged it in an intense duel. Realizing that he could not hit the hostile gunners because they were behind a large rock, he charged uphill under a steady stream of fire, killed both gunners with his pistol and dragged their gun down to his own men, directing them to employ it against the enemy. Disregarding heavy rifle fire, he returned to the enemy machine-gun nest for 2 boxes of ammunition, came back and resumed withering fire from his own gun. His spectacular performance completely broke up the German counterattack. Pfc. Lindstrom demonstrated aggressive spirit and complete fearlessness in the face of almost certain death.”
       The text of Lindstrom's official Silver Star citation reads:
       "The President of the United States of America, authorized by Act of Congress July 9, 1918, takes pleasure in presenting the Silver Star to Private Floyd K. Lindstrom (ASN: 37349634), United States Army, for gallantry in action while serving with Company H, 7th Infantry Regiment, 3d Infantry Division. On 12 July 1943, at about 1930, the Second Section, Section Platoon of Company H, 7th Infantry Regiment, was traveling by trucks to establish machine gun outposts when the convoy was attacked by four enemy planes. The convoy stopped and everyone dispersed, but the driver of one of the vehicles failed to set the brakes on his truck. The truck started to roll down a hill toward a man lying in its path and who apparently did not see the danger. Leaving his place of safety, and with complete disregard for the planes strafing and bombing directly overhead, Private Lindstrom ran to the truck and guided it into a bank. This act undoubtedly saved the man's life and also prevented the truck from rolling over a steep bank with the consequent destruction of both the truck and its load. The truck with its load of heavy machine gun and ammunition enabled the section to successfully complete its mission."
       The undated Gazette article also states that because Lindstrom was up for the Medal of Honor during the Allied beach landings at Anzio, Italy, in January 1944, he was given the chance to stay in the rear. But he refused, and was killed at Anzio Feb. 3, 1944.

Westside Pioneer article
(Posted 12/24/14; Projects: VA Clinic)

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