Neighbors: A North Dakota memory from the day World War II ended

Bob Lind
Bob Lind, Neighbors columnist. The Forum

Aug. 15, 1945, was some day. It was the day Japan’s Emperor Hirohito announced his country had surrendered, ending World War II.

Anybody who was around then and was old enough to understand what had happened remembers that historic day. Tom Bell certainly does.

Tom, a resident of the North Dakota Veterans Home in Lisbon, N.D., writes Neighbors about it.

He was 8 years old. He and another boy were playing in a grass ditch across the street from Joseph and Mary Shannon’s house in Cogswell, N.D.

Mary and Joseph had two children. One of them was a son also named Joseph, who was born in 1923 and who was in the military during the war.


Suddenly while Tom and his buddy were playing, “Mary opened her front door and yelled to us, ‘You boys come over here!’” Tom writes.

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“I first thought we were in trouble.

“But when we got to the house, Mary put party hats on us, gave us party toys, and said, ‘The war is over and my boy Joe is coming home safe!’

“And that is a good memory about the end of a war,” Tom concludes.

It sure is, Tom.

If you have an item of interest for this column, mail it to Neighbors, The Forum, Box 2020, Fargo, ND 58107, fax it to 701-241-5487 or email

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