Hamilton County

Cpl. Orville Jondal


Pfc. Orville Jondal, son of Mr. and Mrs. Ole Jondal of this city, who is the only local youth known to be a member of the Rangers—the U. S. version of the Commandos—has sent the Freeman-Journal a letter describing his experiences especially in Scotland.

Jondal’s letter dated Oct. 24 and passed by censor is as follows.

“Hello to you all. I am going to write a line to tell you I am all right and feeling fine. As you know I am in the Rangers and it really is the nicest outfit in the army. You have heard what some of the boys have done, and I am one of the proudest to be the only one from our town. I will surely do my best.

I don’t hear from home very much and I would like to hear from you all as it is nice to receive letters and packages. I hope that if they form a Ranger outfit at home that more of the boys are in it. We have quite a few from Kentucky and Minnesota but more come from Iowa, the best state in the land.

I have been in Glasgow and the mountains of Scotland for so long that I just love to climb them, but I like climbing in bed the best. Well, so much for this article as it is all I am allowed to write you. You’ll be hearing from me soon and I expect to hear from you all.”

Source: Daily Freeman Journal, Dec. 4, 1942


Orville Jondal, son of Mr. and Mrs. Olaf Jondal of this city, has been promoted to the rank of Corporal, according to a letter from him by his parents.  Corporal Jondal is stationed in North Africa with a U.S. Ranger battalion and was recently released from the hospital following treatment for wounds received in action. He is the holder of a Purple Heart award.

Source: Daily Freeman Journal, July 24, 1943


Webster City Soldier Has Been Missing Since January 30.

Corporal Orville O. Jondal, 21, son of Mr. and Mrs. Olaf Jondal of this city, a member of the U. S. Rangers, has been missing in action since Jan. 30 somewhere in Italy, according to a war department notice received here Sunday.

Further details were not available, but other information when received will be relayed to the parents, Adjutant-General Ulio said in the department’s message.

Left in 1941

Corporal Jondal left Webster City with the Iowa National Guard in February, 1941, to enter training at Camp Claiborne, La. Following his transfer overseas he volunteered for Ranger training and was reportedly one of the few American soldiers to take part in the epic Dieppe raid in which thousands of Dominion soldiers were casualties.

The Webster City Ranger was wounded in the early stages of the Tunisian campaign and received the Purple Heart medal—one of the first Webster City servicemen to be honored with this award. He also was reported cited for the Silver Star medal, but the award has not been received here by his parents as in the case of the Purple Heart award.

Was in Sicily

Corporal Jondal took part in the Sicilian campaign and later was moved to Italy where he was hospitalized for two and one-half months because of recurrent malaria fever attacks.

When last heard from, in a letter written the latter part of December, Corporal Jondal stated he was then in the best of health. He apparently was assigned immediately to active duty in the Rangers—the American version of the British commando fighters.

Source: Daily Freeman Journal, Webster City, IA - Mar. 13, 1944


Sgt. Orville Jondal Sends Card From German War Camp.

Sgt. Orville O. Jondal, son of Mr. and Mrs. Olaf Jondal of this city, is a prisoner of war in a German prison camp, according to a card received from Sergeant Jondal and written Feb. 17.

The Webster City Ranger, who was reported missing in action in Italy early this year, had not been heard from until the card was received by his parents Monday evening.

The notice, sent from a transient camp for prisoners of war, was a printed form card which said, “I am prisoner in German captivity but in perfect health. From here I shall be transported during the next few days to another camp, the address of which I shall give you later. Only there I can get your letters and can reply to them.”

Sergeant Jondal is the holder of Purple Heart medal for wounds suffered in the early stages of the North African campaign and was later transferred to Sicily and finally to Italy. When last heard from he had just rejoined his Ranger battalion after being released from a hospital in that war theater.

Source: Daily Freeman Journal, April 25, 1944


Cpl. Orville Jondal, who has been a prisoner of Germany since January, 1944, has been liberated and is well and safe, his parents, Mr. and Mrs. Olaf Jondal of this city have been notified.

Mr. and Mrs. Jondal have received a printed form card from their son, one of the original U S. Rangers, on which he has checked the following sentences:

“I am in U. S. hands. I am well and safe. Will write as soon as possible. Expect to be home soon. Do not write.”

The card was written April 28, and is designated as an “ex-prisoner of war field post card.”

Source: Webster City Freeman, Webster City, IA - May 21, 1945


Orville Olaf Jondal, Sgt. U.S. Army - MIA/POW

Orville Olaf Jondal was born June 27, 1922 to Olaf ‘Ole' Junior and Vera B. Hicks Jondal. He died Feb. 14, 1971 and is buried in Graceland Cemetery, Webster City, IA.

Orville was serving with the U. S. Rangers in North Africa (Tunisia) the action in which he was wounded and received the Purple Heart for his wounds. He was wounded the second time in Italy. He was reported missing in action in Italy early in 1944. In Feb. 1944 he was known to be a prisoner of war in a German prison camp. He is a former member of Co. E, local national guard and volunteered for special training with the U.S. Ranger battalion and took an active part in the Dieppe raid.

Sources: Daily Freeman Journal, Webster City, IA