Funeral services for
Merlin J. Tindal, age 79, of Austin, were held March 29, 2004, at Holy
Anargyroi Greek Orthodox Church in Rochester, with Father Nicholas
Interment was at Calvary Cemetery in Austin, with
graveside military rites by American Legion Post #91, and V.F.W. Post 1216.
Arrangements were by Mayer Funeral Home.
Merlin was born in Austin on Dec. 14, 1924, to Samuel Sr.
and Anna (Weiss) Tindal.
He grew up in Austin, and began working for the George A. Hormel Co. on Aug.
18, 1942. At age 18, he joined the U.S. Army and took his basic training at
Camp Roberts, Calif. After basic training he became a paratrooper with the
82nd Airborne Division.
During the invasion of Normandy, he was captured and taken
prisoner by the German Army at Lusan, France on June 26, 1944.
He was held prisoner of war in three different camps:
Starvation Hill, Stalag 4-F and Stalag 4-B. He was a prisoner of war for 11
months and one day, and was released on May 8, 1945. He was sent to Camp
McCoy, Wis., where he received his honorable discharge from the service on
Jan. 6, 1946.
He returned to Austin, and resumed working at the Hormel
Plant. He continued working there and retired after 41 years of employment.
On May 29, 1964, he married Diana Lourias, at Holy
Anargyroi Greek Orthodox Church in Rochester. She preceded him in death in
Merlin passed away Mar. 25, 2004, after a long and
courageous battle with cancer. He died at the home of his niece, Mrs. Arta
Margellos, in Richfield, Minn.
Merlin was a kind, loving, generous person who will be
greatly missed by his family and all that knew him.
He was preceded in death by his parents; wife; one
brother, Stanley Tindal; two sisters, Lila Tindal and Annaline Goodemann.
He is survived by four brothers, Gene (Carol) Tindal, Sam
Jr. (Audrey) Tindal, all of Brownsdale, Minn.; Bruce (Anna) Tindal of
Whittier, Calif.; Clifford (Carolyn) Tindal of Austin, Minn.; several
nieces, nephews, cousins and friends.
Blessed be his memory.
Merlin J Tindal [was] the son
of Samuel C and Anna O (Weiss) Tindal.
A member of the 82nd Airborne
that went into France on D-Day. He was captured by the Germans. From June
6th, 1944, to May 8th 1945, he was a prisoner. He recalls his group of
prisoners being stoned by the people in Paris and he could tell that they
were being forced to do so by German S.S. Troops.
In prison he worked 72
hours a week, at first at odd jobs like filling bomb craters, but for the
last six months in a saw mill. Merlin also recalls that the meals were
mainly rutabagas, dark bread and potatoes. He weighed 170 when he was
captured and 120 when he was released.
Merlin was married to his
first wife, Doris D More, on October 25, 1947. That marriage ended in 1962.
There are no children from the marriage. Merlin married again in 1964 to a
Greek girl, the "love of his life", Diana Lourias. They had no children, but
they helped in raising five of Diana's brothers children, who now live in
Dallas Texas. Merlin retired from Hormel in Austin Minnesota on March 1,
1984 after 41 1/2 years at the Company. His wife "Diana" Passed on in 1991
at age 65. Merlin has provided a lot of information for our family tree.
J. Tindal participated in the jump intro Normandy on D-Day, June 5, 1944.
He was captured by the Germans and reported in the National Archives
(NARA) to have been a POW as early as June 6, 1944.
NARA records further indicate that he was liberated from Stalag 4B
Muhlberg Sachsen 51-13 which is consistent with remarks in his obituary.
Note that his obituary (at left)
states that the date of capture was June 26, 1944, the "26" may have been a
typo instead of "6". Note also that in his daughter's writing (above)
she states that he was a prisoner "from June 6th, 1944, to May 8th 1945".
That date of release is most probably correct as on 12 June 1945, Pvt Marlin J. Tindal arrived in New York
City Harbor aboard the
USS Admiral W. S. Benson (see line 71).