Alpo K. Marttinen

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Alpo K. Marttinen
Marttinen alpo.jpg
Alpo Marttinen during World War II.
Born Alpo Kullervo Marttinen
(1908-11-04)4 November 1908
Alatornio, Finland
Died 20 December 1975(1975-12-20) (aged 67)
Falls Church, Virginia
Resting place Fort Leavenworth National Cemetery
Nationality Finnish
Occupation Army officer

Alpo K. Marttinen (4 November 1908 – 20 December 1975) was a Finnish colonel.[1] During World War II he served in the Finnish Army. Following the war he immigrated to the United States and served as an officer in the United States Army, retiring as a colonel.

Marttinen was one of the key figures in the Weapons Cache Case where a large number of Finnish Army weapons was hidden around the country in case of a Soviet invasion. Soldiers involved in this case were forced to leave Finland since hiding weapons was a criminal subject due to the 1944 Moscow Armistice. These soldiers who mostly fled to United States and enlisted in the US Army were later called as "Marttinen's men".[2]

Marttinen first fled to Sweden in 1945 with the help of his former subordinate officer Harry Järv. A year later Marttinen and his family moved to United States. US citizenship was given to Marttinen in 1951. He served in the US Army from 1947 to 1968, first as a specialist and trainer of winter warfare and later as a General Staff Officer in United States, West-Germany and South Korea. Last three years of his military career Marttinen spent as a Military advisor in Iran. He was a graduate of US Army Command and General Staff College (1950) and US Army War College (1963).[1]

Marttinen died 20 December 1975 at Falls Church, Virginia, and was buried at Fort Leavenworth National Cemetery.[3] He had three sons. His oldest, Pekka Marttinen (1933–1958), served as a lieutenant in the 2d Cavalry Regiment.[4] He was killed in a gunnery explosion in Grafenwöhr, Germany.[5]

Awards[edit]

Finland:

United States:

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b Alpo Marttinen biography (in Finnish). Retrieved 4 July 2013.
  2. ^ WWII in Color – Lieutenant Colonel Alpo Marttinen Retrieved 4 July 2013.
  3. ^ Col Alpo Kullervo Marttinen at Find a Grave.
  4. ^ Pekka Marttinen at Find a Grave
  5. ^ H.A. Gill III, "Soldier Under Three Flags – The Exploits of Special Forces Captain Larry A. Thorne", pp. 191–92.

Further reading[edit]