Irid Alton "Ike"
- Eitreim, Irid Alton "Ike"
Corporal 101 Airborne, 907 Glider Field Artillery. A personal dear friend.
- 14-04-1922, Rock County, Minnasota.
- 09-11-2001, lung cancer, age 79.
- Palisade Lutheran Church cemetery. Rock County, Minnasota.
Eitreim, Irid Alton "Ike"
Ike Alton Eitreim, born 14-04-1922 Rock County, Minnasota, was a corporal and gunner of the 101st Airborne Division, 907th Glider Field Artillery Company and with Norwegian roots. He was the son of a from Norwegian immigrated couple and proud to be a Viking. He and his wife Caryl joined several associations with other Norwegian people. He and his brothers were all their life farmers and Irid volunteered in the Army with the outbreak of World War II. Ike became the gunner of the 101st Airborne Division , 907th Glider Field Artillery Company and participated in all the big battles, from D-Day, Normandy, Market Garden and the Ardennes Offensive or Battle of the Bulge, to Berchtesgaden. Irid Eitreim was also in the neighbourhood of Malmedy, during the Ardenne Offensive and the massacre in December 1944, more than 100 American prisoners were killed by the Forces of SS Joachim Peiper (see Peiper).
Until the 50th anniversary of the liberation of Holland, in 1994, Irid never spoke about his war events with his sons Jeffrey and Greg. In 1994 for the 50 anniversary of our liberation, Irid and his wife Carol, and all living 101 warriors, were invited by our Eindhoven 101 Airborne Association, for this great event (see About). But after the big celebrations and recognitions of his war history, Ike couldn’t stop telling about his war events. Corporal Irid Eitreim always had bad feelings about the war, maybe after the Malmedy massacre, the Americans didn't take prisoners anymore, temporary?. He found out that the Dutch people still valued his efforts during World War II and felt much better after his visit to Holland, with about 100 other veterans, they all wear orange caps and marched proudly on the townhall square. The respect they got from the Dutch youth and older people, brought them tears every evening. He would never been the same man as his oldest son Jeffrey told us during our visit to their home, in North Dakota. Irid showed his showcase with, till then hidden, decorations, hanged up proud on the wall. During a visit to Souix City Ike introduced us to father Sampson (see Sampson) the famous 101 Airborne para priest, who fell in the river Douve on D-Day. He also brought back home Frerick "Fritz" Niland (see Niland) "Private Ryan". Father Sampson gave me his signed biography, "Look out below", during a lunch. Father Sampson died three months later on 16-01-1996, of stomach cancer, a special kind man.
Mrs Burns, 101 AB Bob Burns, Rob, Father Sampson, Erid Eitreim.
Irid Eitreim “Ike” lived on his farm until he died of lung cancer, at the age of 79, on 09-11-2001, shortly after the attack on the Twin Towers, 10-09-2001. His sons Jeffrey and Greg surprised me with his WWII 101 AB cap. Corporal Irid and Caryl Eitreim, we really love them, are buried on the cemetery Palisade Luthern Church in Rock County, Minnasota. His son Jeffrey was so kind to sent me the war and grave pictures.