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Bernice Svee, daughter of John Svee and Berit Rokke, was my mother's sister.

Bernice and Ole did not have any children.    Ole Flotterud was a widower, whose first wife was "Signa J".  Ole and Signa had two sons, Clifton and Harold.

Bernice Svee
Bernice Svee

Ole Flotterud
Ole Flotterud
Company "D" - Zumbrota, Minnesota
Company "D" before going to Mexican border to defend against Pancho Villa

Company "D" - Zumbrota, Minnesota 1917
Soldiers leaving Zumbrota
 for WWI in 1917

Ole Flotterd grave location - Fort Snelling, Minnesota
Grave location of
Ole Flotterud
Ft. Snelling, Minnesota
Ole Flotterud Grave Stone - Fort Snelling, Minnesota
Ole Flotterud Grave Stone - Fort Snelling, Minnesota
Click on tombstones and soldiers for larger pictures.

Bernice Josephine Svee
March 18, 1899--September 25, 1965.

Bernice was born at home.  She was a rural school teacher.

Bernice Josephine Svee,
graduated from Zumbrota High School in 1915.  There were 20 people in her class, 11 girls and 9 boys.

She, like her sisters Celia and Lena was
very involved with the American Legion Auxiliary.  Bernice served as Department President (President of the American Legion in the state of Minnesota) in 1954-1955 and District President in 1947-1948 and in 1956 was National Committeewoman.  Mrs. A.S. Lewis (Lena Svee) was elected District President in 1935 and Mrs. Henry Satrum (Celia Svee) also served as District President in 1941.  Celia Also served 2 years as District Secretary.  She was also President of the local Zumbrota American Legion Auxiliary in 1939, 1942, and 1946.

She married
Ole Flotterud, a widower, whose first wife was "Signa J".  Ole and Signa had two sons, Clifton and Harold.

"Bern" was capable with a gun and could fire a 45 caliber pistol as well as a "varmint gun".  She worked as a sales person at "Elmes Ladies Shop" at the northwest corner of 4th Street and Main Street in Zumbrota, Minnesota later in life as well.  One of her traits, which helped her with this job, was her ability to remember people's names and information about them.

Ole Flotterud
November 30, 1893--January 10, 1946
Ole served in Company "D" of the "Zumbrota Guards".

He was a corporal in 1916 when Company D was mustered into federal service to serve on the Mexican border after "Pancho Villa" raided Columbus, New Mexico.  Their camp was 6 miles from the border.

He served as a Sergeant in
World War I  in the 136th Infantry, 34th Division.  He also served in World War II.  While we don't have details of Ole's World War II service, he was listed as a "World War II veteran who served at the Commander of American Legion Post No. 183 (Zumbrota)".  Since he was Commander in 1944 it means he served in WWII during or before 1944.

Some history about the Zumbrota Guards:
The Zumbrota Guards was organized as a militia in 1885 by a group of young men from Zumbrota.  They furnished their own uniforms and later the government provided some old 50 caliber rifles.

The Third Minnesota Infantry regiment was organized in 1887 and the Zumbrota company  was admitted as "Company D".  In 1898 the company volunteered for service in the Spanish American War.  On May 8, 1898 the company was mustered into the 14th Minnesota Infantry and went to Chickamunga Park, Georgia.  They were sent then to Chattanooga, Tennessee and then Knoxville Tennessee before returning to St. Paul Minnesota where they resumed their former status in the Minnesota National Guard.

MEXICAN BORDER ("Pancho Villa")
In 1916, members of Company D were mustered into federal service and served in Llano Grande Camp, Texas.  Francisco "Pancho" Villa had raided Columbus, New Mexico and President Wilson called the troops into service for border duty.  They received a "clothing allotment" of $43.05, with an additional monthly allotment of $7.18.  If the $7.18 did not cover the clothing needs for the month, the men had to purchase any extras out of their salaries of $15 per month for privates, $21 per month for corporals, and $30 per month for sergeants.  18 cents per day was allowed for subsistence for each man.  Ole Flotterud served with his company at the Mexican border.


The United States entered into World War I on April 6, 1917.  On July 10, 1917, Company D was mustered into Federal Service.  After a farewell banquet by the citizens of Zumbrota, the men left for Camp Cody, Deming, New Mexico.  Company D was trained as an artillery unit which was then split up with the men going to the 125th, 126th and 126th Field Artillery regiments.  Practically every man in the company saw overseas duty and many were in active fighting.  Ole served as a sergeant with this group of men of Company D.


Enlisting at a later time and also serving during World War I were brothers of the woman he would later marry, Bernice Svee.  These brothers were
Henry J. Svee and Arthur Leonard Svee.

Of the Zumbrota men who served in World War I, 9 died.

SOURCE: "Zumbrota, The First 100 Years, 1856-1956".

© 2008 Jon Satrum