COMMUNITY - "Borgstrom family military history book published"


BOX ELDER COUNTY - March 22, 2022


Guess what story has been told, finally? So Great a Sacrifice, a book about the Borgstrom family and their military history was published this month and is available online at www.serviceflagtradition.com or Amazon for $17.99 and includes contributions by a local author and Bothwell resident.


Mark Hutson, the author and a U.S. Army veteran living in Woodstock, Illinois, spearheaded a service flag presentation. He wanted to teach others what the flags meant. As part of his message, he told veterans’ stories.


One of his stories was about the Sullivans, five Navy brothers who went down with the sinking of the USS Juneau. As he researched their tragedy, he came across another name, the Borgstroms, five military brothers from Thatcher, Utah, four killed within six months of one another. Unlike the Sullivans, Hutson hadn’t even heard the Borgstrom name. At all the events he presented in, no one else had either. He needed to do something about that.


A cause was born, and Hutson dedicated the next five years to researching and writing about the Borgstroms. When asked about his writing experience, he admitted, “This is my first book, and what a challenge it was! It was rewarding and other times incredibly frustrating,” Hutson said.


Hutson had a little help along the way in getting the book published. Tamera Newman, a retired Bear River High English teacher and long-time Bothwell resident, offered up her knowledge and research on the Borgstrom brothers by contributing to So Great a Sacrifice.


During a December 2021 interview with BRVNEWS.com for an article (link found below) Newman first hinted at the contribution she had made to Hutson's book.

FEATURE - "Local author compiles popular 'Survivor Stories'" (brvnews.com)


“I’m from Thatcher. My grandpa was the bishop, and he was the one who delivered all the messages saying that all the boys had died. I got a call three years ago from a guy named Mark Hutson from back east. He said he was retired military, and he came out here and found out about the Borgstrom brothers and he said, ‘I want their story.’ He has contacted scholars who have helped him gather information but he didn’t have any information about Thatcher and them growing up in their early days,” Newman said.


“He had the story of them in the military but he wanted more of their earlier life and how the parents coped with this. I didn’t write it but I contributed to it. It will be a fascinating book,” she added.


Hutson highlighted two unforgettable research experiences. As he browsed through a thin folder in President Roosevelt’s Presidential Library in Hyde Park, New York, he discovered the original, heartfelt letter the president had written to Alben and Gunda Borgstrom after the loss of their sons.


Hutson also connected with Dave Morgan and son Glenn, hobby historians of the 506th Bombardment Squadron, which Rolon Borgstrom served in. The Morgans live near Shipdham Airbase in England where Rolon was stationed. They knew the exact place where Rolon’s B24 went down and had visited the crash site many times and recovered several relics. Viewing their collection brought Rolon’s story to life for Hutson.


Mothers post a star in the front windows of their homes representing children in military service. A Gold Star means they gave their lives for the country. Hutson traveled that Gold Star Road and shared his experience in an unforgettable and unselfish way, “For every star, there is a story.”

Mark Hutson - Courtesy photo

FEATURE - "Local author compiles popular 'Survivor Stories'" (brvnews.com)