PFC James Albert Krahn

Unknown Sailor

PFC James Albert Krahn

James Albert Krahn was born Dec. 19, 1915 in Cavalier County in northeast North Dakota to William Krahn, a farmer and Canadian immigrant, and Mary Bulver Krahn, a homemaker.

The family, which included five young children, fell ill in November 1918 with influenza, and a year-old son died. The flu pandemic that swept the world that year killed about 50 million.

James Krahn attended school in nearby Langdon, North Dakota, and enlisted in the Marines in Chicago on Oct. 12, 1939, alongside Charles Borusky, another local man.

Both were aboard  the U.S.S. Arizona when they were killed in the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor, Dec. 7, 1941. Mr. Krahn was a private first class.

A memorial service honored the two men in Langdon, a town of about 1,500 near the Canadian border. VFW Post 2631 in Langdon was founded in 1945 and named in their honor.


Sources: Cavalier County (North Dakota) Courier Democrat; “Langdon, North Dakota, Diamond Jubilee”; Census; Marine muster roll; World War I draft registration card; Veterans Administration. ​​This profile was researched and written on behalf of the U.S.S. Arizona Mall Memorial at the University of Arizona.

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