Freedom Fighters: Roy Arkelin -, Longview, Jacksonville, Texas | ETX News

Freedom Fighters: Roy Arkelin

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By Joan Hallmark

Roy Arkelin joined the army in 1942, and by the end of the year, he was fighting in North Africa.

After recovering from a hip wound, he was sent to Sicily, where the fighting was ferocious. Many of his friends were killed in battle and Arkelin was badly wounded. He lay bleeding from noon on one day until noon of the next day.

As he came close to death, he saw fields of white flowers. He said they were the most beautiful sight he has ever seen.

Arkelin was finally rescued and after a long, painful recovery, he was sent to Camp Fannin near Tyler to train recruits.

There he met Gertrude Cooper, from an old Tyler rose growing family. Gertrude passed away after 63 and a half years of marriage.

At the age of 93, Roy Arkelin, son of immigrants, says he is proud to have served the country which has meant so much to him and his family.

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