Vietnam was Carrie Ruud’s generation’s war, and the Republican state senator from Breezy Point still has two bracelets representing classmates who were missing in action.

“Don’t forget. Share the names; share the stories,” Ruud said.

Ruud was the guest speaker at the Memorial Day service hosted Monday, May 31, by the Pequot Lakes American Legion Post and Jenkins Veterans of Foreign Wars Post. Addressing a crowd at the Pequot Lakes School auditorium, Ruud pulled both bracelets from her wrist to read the inscriptions. She's kept the bracelets to never forget the people.


"Don’t forget. Share the names; share the stories."

— State Sen. Carrie Ruud, R-Breezy Point


She dedicated her speech to her older brother, George, who served and suffered from cancer after the war. However, he lived a full life and died last November not from cancer, but in a sky-diving accident.

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Ruud’s parents both served in World War II, and she shared the story of her husband’s best friend from childhood whom she never got the chance to meet. Her husband, Dick Rostad, and his best friend, Elroy Harworth, both enlisted to serve their country. Harworth’s plane was shot down May 31, 1966, in Vietnam when he was just 24 years old, and he was missing in action for 20 years.

Ruud read many names and where those names are located on the Vietnam Memorial Wall. She reiterated that we must share the names and the stories.

State Sen. Carrie Ruud, R-Breezy Point, talks at a Memorial Day service Monday, May 31, in the Pequot Lakes High School auditorium. Nancy Vogt / Echo Journal
State Sen. Carrie Ruud, R-Breezy Point, talks at a Memorial Day service Monday, May 31, in the Pequot Lakes High School auditorium. Nancy Vogt / Echo Journal

Area communities where traditional Memorial Day services took place include Pequot Lakes, Nisswa, Crosslake, Pine River and Backus.

Nancy Vogt may be reached at 218-855-5877 or nancy.vogt@pineandlakes.com. Follow her on Facebook and on Twitter at www.twitter.com/@PEJ_Nancy.