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Local heroes featured in Little Minnesota book

When authors Deane and Jill Johnson were doing research for their first book, Little Minnesota: 100 Towns Around 100, they were astounded by the number of men who had died in World War II from very small towns like Strandquist who had lost seven men.

Because that number seemed so disproportionate to the numbers from bigger cities, “We decided we wanted to tell their stories in a second book,” Jill shared.

The book is now published: Little Minnesota in World War II: The Stories Behind 140 Fallen Heroes from Minnesota’s Littlest Towns. On February 2, the Johnsons presented on the book and their research at First Lutheran Church in Karlstad; the event was sponsored by the Karlstad Library.

While researching the book, the Johnsons collected information and photos from military documents, websites like or, and family members, including locals Corienne Jacobson and Shane Olson. “Family members helped so much,” Jill said.

For more, see this week’s North Star News!

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