Suomen sotilaat

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Simo Hayha, the Finnish sniper with 505 confirmed kills in the Winter War 1939-1940, and his dog Kille.

Simo Hayha, the Finnish sniper with 505 confirmed kills in the Winter War 1939-1940, and his dog Kille.

Finnish soldiers

Finnish soldiers

Ilmari Juutilainen, Finland's top flying ace, in the cockpit of Brewster BW-364 at Hirvas base, 1942

Ilmari Juutilainen, Finland's top flying ace, in the cockpit of Brewster BW-364 at Hirvas base, 1942

Finnish soldier with light machine gun going to relieve a man from sentry duty at forward outpost. Vuosalmi bridgehead, July 24, 1944.

Finnish soldier with light machine gun going to relieve a man from sentry duty at forward outpost. Vuosalmi bridgehead, July 24, 1944.

Paavo Suoranta (1917-2002) Knight of the Mannerheim Cross #88. Continuation War

Paavo Suoranta (1917-2002) Knight of the Mannerheim Cross #88. Continuation War

Viljo Suokas (1920–1943), Knight of the Mannerheim Cross No.44. His skills in guerilla warfare was noticed and after Winter War he received special training for long range patrol missions. In Continuation War Suokas served as patrol leader in Detachment Kuismanen (OsKu). He was credited for many successful missions, withe the longest time spent behind enemy lines being46 days. Viljo Suokas died on October 4, 1943 while clearing a storage building at Segezha, a town by the Murmansk railway.

Viljo Suokas (1920–1943), Knight of the Mannerheim Cross No.44. His skills in guerilla warfare was noticed and after Winter War he received special training for long range patrol missions. In Continuation War Suokas served as patrol leader in Detachment Kuismanen (OsKu). He was credited for many successful missions, withe the longest time spent behind enemy lines being46 days. Viljo Suokas died on October 4, 1943 while clearing a storage building at Segezha, a town by the Murmansk railway.

Long range patrol led by Lieutenant Toivo Korhonen, a Knight of the Mannerheim Cross. Continuation War

Long range patrol led by Lieutenant Toivo Korhonen, a Knight of the Mannerheim Cross. Continuation War

Mikko Pöllä (1916–1994) long range patrolman and Knight of the Mannerheim Cross, pin by Paolo Marzioli

Mikko Pöllä (1916–1994) long range patrolman and Knight of the Mannerheim Cross, pin by Paolo Marzioli


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Olavi Alakulppi was a Finnish cross country skier who competed in the 1930s. During the Russo-Finnish Continuation War, he served in the Finnish army and was awarded the Mannerheim Cross. After the Second World War, he made a career in the United States Army.     In 1945, in order to evade prosecution for his involvement in the Weapons Cache Case, he skied to Sweden and arranged for his wife Eevi, their son Vesa, and him to travel to the United States where he soon joined the United States…

Olavi Alakulppi was a Finnish cross country skier who competed in the 1930s. During the Russo-Finnish Continuation War, he served in the Finnish army and was awarded the Mannerheim Cross. After the Second World War, he made a career in the United States Army. In 1945, in order to evade prosecution for his involvement in the Weapons Cache Case, he skied to Sweden and arranged for his wife Eevi, their son Vesa, and him to travel to the United States where he soon joined the United States…

Reserve lieutenant Carl-Birger Kvikant (1912-1944), Knight of the Mannerheim Cross No. 132. He volunteered for the newly formed assault gun battalion in 1943 & led a company of StuG III assault guns in combat in 1944. At Kuuterselkä on June 14-15, his company destroyed 13 tanks, 3 assault guns and some 15 anti-tank guns. The Mannerheim Cross was awarded to him posthumously June 25, 1944. He had already earned the Cross of Liberty 4th class, and Cross of Liberty 4th class with Oak Leaves.

Reserve lieutenant Carl-Birger Kvikant (1912-1944), Knight of the Mannerheim Cross No. 132. He volunteered for the newly formed assault gun battalion in 1943 & led a company of StuG III assault guns in combat in 1944. At Kuuterselkä on June 14-15, his company destroyed 13 tanks, 3 assault guns and some 15 anti-tank guns. The Mannerheim Cross was awarded to him posthumously June 25, 1944. He had already earned the Cross of Liberty 4th class, and Cross of Liberty 4th class with Oak Leaves.

Toivo Ilomäki (1917–1965) Knight of the Mannerheim Cross #155. During the Continuation War he was Anti-Tank Gunner in 24th Gun Company of 5th Division (24.TykK/5.Div) and fought from Ladoga Karelia to Svir river. Citation for his Mannerheim Cross (2nd class) mentions that he destroyed his first tank on June 22, 1944, and two days later 16 tanks (14x T-34 & 2x KV-1) in Battle of Sammatus (PSS line),. Later he destroyed 4 more tanks from close range at Tihveri

Toivo Ilomäki (1917–1965) Knight of the Mannerheim Cross #155. During the Continuation War he was Anti-Tank Gunner in 24th Gun Company of 5th Division (24.TykK/5.Div) and fought from Ladoga Karelia to Svir river. Citation for his Mannerheim Cross (2nd class) mentions that he destroyed his first tank on June 22, 1944, and two days later 16 tanks (14x T-34 & 2x KV-1) in Battle of Sammatus (PSS line),. Later he destroyed 4 more tanks from close range at Tihveri

Finnish pilot Jorma Karhunen from his fighter Brewster B-239 at the airport Suulayarvi

Finnish pilot Jorma Karhunen from his fighter Brewster B-239 at the airport Suulayarvi

Brewster B-239 Buffalo with 33 1/2 victories and the pilot Lt. Hans Wind, Finland 1943

Brewster B-239 Buffalo with 33 1/2 victories and the pilot Lt. Hans Wind, Finland 1943

Captain Eero Kivelä (1908-1992), Knight of the Mannerheim Cross No.9. He was awarded the Mannerheim Cross (2nd class) on September 8, 1941, for showing great personal courage under fire, and for repelling enemy attack with counter-attack, during which he destroyed nine tanks with his men. During the wars he received Cross of Liberty 3rd class twice (second with Oak Leaves), and Cross of Liberty 4th class.

Captain Eero Kivelä (1908-1992), Knight of the Mannerheim Cross No.9. He was awarded the Mannerheim Cross (2nd class) on September 8, 1941, for showing great personal courage under fire, and for repelling enemy attack with counter-attack, during which he destroyed nine tanks with his men. During the wars he received Cross of Liberty 3rd class twice (second with Oak Leaves), and Cross of Liberty 4th class.

Aarne Juutilainen1939

Aarne Juutilainen1939

Lauri Allan Törni (28 May 1919 – 18 October 1965), later known as Larry Thorne, was a Finnish Army captain who led an infantry company in the Finnish Winter and Continuation Wars and moved to the United States after World War II. He fought under three flags: Finnish, German (when he fought the Soviets in World War II), and American (where he was known as Larry Thorne) when he served in U.S. Army Special Forces in the Vietnam War.  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lauri_Törni

Lauri Allan Törni (28 May 1919 – 18 October 1965), later known as Larry Thorne, was a Finnish Army captain who led an infantry company in the Finnish Winter and Continuation Wars and moved to the United States after World War II. He fought under three flags: Finnish, German (when he fought the Soviets in World War II), and American (where he was known as Larry Thorne) when he served in U.S. Army Special Forces in the Vietnam War. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lauri_Törni

Knight of the Mannerheim Cross, Lieutenant Kullervo Leskinen. Uhtua,12.8.43.

Knight of the Mannerheim Cross, Lieutenant Kullervo Leskinen. Uhtua,12.8.43.

Vilho Rättö (1913-2002) Knight of the Mannerheim Cross #4. Continuation War

Vilho Rättö (1913-2002) Knight of the Mannerheim Cross #4. Continuation War

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