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1928 photograph of WWII hero

March 12, 2015

My nephew Jon digitized many family photographs, including some from my aunt Corinne Ackley.

I was looking for a photograph to post on Facebook of my Uncle Carl (Bud) Ralph Bonde, Jr., killed in action by a U-Boat torpedo fired from U-486 Christmas Eve about 5 miles from the French port of Cherbourg.  About 476 died around time of the sinking of the SS Leopoldville, many because of delayed or botched rescues.

Bud was born Sept. 15, 1923, at home in Kalispell, Montana.  Today Kalispell has several distinctions that Montanans know:  many extreme right-wingers live near there.  Many Norwegian-speaking people migrated there.  Kalispell is located north of Flathead Lake, the largest fresh-water in the United States that is west of the continental divide.  In fact, Kalispell is in the Flathead Valley.  Bud would eventually wind up in the 66th Panther Division in Arkansas and become known for reciting what sounded like a chamber of commerce description of his hometown, according to his close friend William Moomey, whom I interviewed in 2005. I found out about Bud’s living army buddies thanks to scholar Alan Andrade of New York City. Mr. Andrade, a retired detective of the NYPD, had spent many years collecting stories and information about the heroes who perished with the sinking of the SS Leopoldville troopship. SCN_0467

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