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Charlie (left) and his brother George Thompson were two of nine brothers who served in World War II. Jana Peterson/jpeterson@pinejournal.com

The Thompsons are a family of heroes

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Imagine raising 14 children on a farm in Carlton County. Now imagine nine of your kids going off to war at the same time.

That's precisely what happened to Finnish immigrants Mathilda and Jacob Thompson. Nine of their 11 sons served during the Second World War.

The eldest, Edward, was in the Merchant Marines. Eight more - Charles (Charlie), Jack, Reino (Ray), Arthur, William (Bill), Fred, Bernard and George - were drafted, one by one.

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