A clinic for veterans will be named for a Colorado Springs man who went from living in poverty at the Myron Stratton Home to earning the nation's highest military honor in World War II.
The Veterans Affairs clinic under construction on West Fillmore Street will be named for Medal of Honor recipient Army Pfc. Floyd K. Lindstrom, U.S. Rep. Doug Lamborn and Sen. Mark Udall announced Wednesday.
Lindstrom earned the medal on Veterans Day, Nov. 11, 1943, when he charged a German machine gun nest in southern Italy while serving with the 3rd Infantry Division.
"Now people can find out who this hero was," said Keith LaMee, a Colorado Springs veteran who has led an effort to bring attention to Lindstorm's story. "He has gone vastly forgotten in his home town."
Lindstrom, who never married and had no children, died in combat three months after earning the medal, which was awarded posthumously in April, 1944. He's buried in Evergreen Cemetery and his medal is part of the collection of the Colorado Springs Pioneers Museum.
"A day after his 30th birthday, he went into the Army," said LaMee, who began researching Lindstrom in 2010.
In 1914, Lindstrom arrived at the Myron Stratton Home, a Colorado Springs charity established through a mining millionaire's philanthropy to shelter the poor.
After leaving the home in 1931, he worked as a soda jerk and then a truck driver known for delivering loads safely and on time.
"In his 11 years of driving not a fender of the trucks he drove was scratched," Herbert Sommers, who employed Lindstrom, told The Gazette after the medal was awarded. "Floyd was absolutely dependable."
In Italy, Pfc. Lindstrom was pinned down on Nov. 11, 1943. He grabbed his 45-caliber pistol and earned a place in history.
"Realizing that he could not hit the hostile gunners because they were behind a large rock, he charged uphill under a steady stream of fire, killed both gunners with his pistol and dragged their gun down to his own men, directing them to employ it against the enemy," the citation for Lindstrom's Medal of Honor reads.
He died at Anzio, Italy, felled after he volunteered to stay with the unit after being offered lighter duty while his Medal of Honor nomination was considered.
After the war, no monument to Lindstrom's heroics was erected. And, LaMee says, he faded into history.
Lindstrom's name was picked from nominations vetted by a naming committee. The process took nearly a year.
Brian Binn, who headed the committee, said Lindstrom met two requirements off the bat: Strong ties to Pikes Peak region combined with the Medal of Honor.
What made Lindstrom stand out, he said, was the hard road he took to get to the Army.
"All of our nominees were good and had well thought-out nominations," Binn said. "Pfc. Lindstrom came out on top."
The committee was unanimous in its choice.
Lamborn and Udall praised the pick.
"I can think of no one more deserving of this honor than Pfc. Floyd Lindstrom," Lamborn said. "All his life he faced challenges of one sort or another, and every time he overcame them."