Linn, Sidney.


Linn, Sidney. b. December 23, 1913 (1914), Brooklyn, New York; Father Abraham Linetsky, mother Anna Rontal; 6th grade education; Prior military service in the US Army, Coastal Artillery, 1928-35, he joined at 14; Single; Salesman and Carpenter; CP 1936 (or No party affiliation); Received Passport# 365002 on February 8, 1937 which listed his address as 2278 Blaine Avenue, Detroit, Michigan, and Cleveland, Ohio; Sailed February 17, 1937 aboard the President Roosevelt; Arrived in Spain on March 5, 1937; Served with the 86th BDE, 20th BN, Cordoba Front; XV BDE, Auto Park, Driver and Service Sanitaire, Ambulance driver; Returned to the US on August 13, 1938 aboard the President Roosevelt; Married Anne Bates (1914-?) on September 2, 1939 in Lucas, Ohio; WWII; Ran the Fort Wayne Detroit Harbor Terminal and Supply Depot; d. January 27, 2003, Seattle, Washington, buried in Washington, later transferred to Clovery Hill Park Cemetery in Birmingham, Michigan.
Biography: Aside from his family, Sidney Linn was most proud of having fought in Spain. Sid volunteered to be an ambulance driver and spent 18 months on the southern front. Upon his return home to Detroit he continued his dedication to social justice, working for civil rights, and union organizing in the late 1940s and ‘50s. He met his wife to-be, Anne, also an activist, when he was speaking about Spain at a fundraising event in 1938. When World War II began he tried enlisting in every branch of the service, but a bad arm and health problems exacerbated by his time in Spain kept him out. He worked as a civilian for the army. As the story goes, when his commanding officer received a letter from J. Edgar Hoover informing him that Sid was a Communist and should be fired, the commander erupted, “If Sid Linn is a Communist we need more damn Commies in this army and maybe we’d win the war faster!” After the war, Sid worked in the home improvement industry and at his funeral a longtime colleague said, “Your dad was a straight shooter. In a tough business he was an honest guy.” Our father had a difficult childhood – no childhood at all, really. He was orphaned at an early age and learned survival skills on the streets of New York. He and our mother raised us to value integrity, honesty, peace, and justice. He wasn’t always an easy guy to live with, but we’re proud to be his daughters. Sidney Linn died on January 27, 2003. He was 89. —Nancy Pearl and Susan Linn
Sources: Sail; Scope of Soviet Activity; Cadre; RGASPI; Good Fight C; (obituary) Nancy Pearl and Susan Linn, “Sidney Linn, 1913-2003,” The Volunteer, Volume 25, No. 2, June 2003, pp. 17, 20. Code A