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U.S. Marine Sgt. Daniel Erlandson was born in Everett, Washington, and was raised with three sisters. Erlandson knew at an early age he wanted to be a Marine, but watching the events of September 11, 2001 as a young man was the driving reason he would later join the military. After enlisting in 2008, Erlandson went to Recruit Training and then to Camp Pendleton’s School of Infantry where he received his job as a Machine Gunner and his assignment to 3rd Battalion 4th Marines Kilo Company. Four months after living at his duty station in 29 Palms, California, Erlandson met his wife, Theresa. Following his first deployment, Erlandson and Theresa got married in 2011.
Erlandson served in the U.S. Marines for six years and 11 months and deployed to Afghanistan three times between 2009 and 2013. Day after day, Erlandson’s platoon faced improvised explosive devices (IEDs), snipers, firefights and hostile villagers. During a patrol in 2011, gunshots erupted from multiple enemy positions along a ridge. Erlandson was taking cover behind a wall when he turned around to talk to his Patrol Leader and was shot in his shoulder. After being evacuated in the middle of a firefight, Erlandson was treated in Afghanistan before being flown to Germany for further medical care. He returned to the United States to recover but soon felt the need to go back and support his brothers abroad. In March 2013, Erlandson deployed for his final tour to Afghanistan, but this time he was going with his brother-in-law who had joined his same battalion and company.
Due to injuries sustained during his deployment, Erlandson suffers from post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), anxiety disorder, ankle sprains, shoulder pain and back pain among others. Erlandson was honorably discharged on February 27, 2015. For his courageous service, he has received many accolades, including a Combat Action Ribbon, two Afghanistan Campaign Medals with three stars, a Navy Unit Commendation Medal, a NATO Medal and a GWOT Service Medal.
Erlandson and Theresa recently moved to Ohio for school, work and to be close to family. He is currently working hard at Lowe’s and enjoys helping people and answering their questions. Erlandson will start school at Cedarville University in Ohio, where he will be majoring in Biblical Studies and minoring in Pastoral Ministries. At the same time, he is helping his wife as she battles Medullary Cystic Kidney Disease. Erlandson is completing all the preliminary steps to be able to donate his kidney to his wife this summer. Despite not knowing what the future holds for he and his wife, Erlandson remains steadfast in believing in God’s goodness.
Operation FINALLY HOME and local builder American Trademark Construction Services are excited to come together to provide a home for Sgt. Daniel Erlandson and his family in the Dayton, Ohio area in 2017.