Service Record World War II - Bussey American Legion Post #505

This book was published by Bussey American Legion Post No. 505 in 1947. Businesses and individuals from Bussey, Albia, Knoxville, Tracy, Attica, Hamilton and Lovilia, Iowa provided financial assistance. The Post dedicated the book as "a memorial to our buddies, who were killed in action."

Gold Star Men

(click on photos to enlarge)

Photo James A. Bussey 1st Lieut JAMES A. BUSSEY, A.A.F.
383rd Fighter Sqdn
364 Fighter Gp., 8th A.F.

Entered service November 6,1942. Pre-flight training, San Antonio Army A.F.P.S. Basic training, Strother Air Field, Winfield, Kansas, Advanced training, Foster Field, Victoria, Texas. Received “Wings” and Comm., 2nd Lieut., February 9,1944, Foster Field, Texas, Overseas, England, 1944. Served as Pilot on P-51 “Mustang” fighter plane with 383rd fighter sqdn. of 8th A.F., Honington Air Base, near Bury St. Edmonds, England. Promoted to 1st Lieut, November 21,1944. Flew 57 Combat Missions over Germany, France, Belgium and Holland. Decorations: Air Medal with silver (5) oak leaf cluster, Presidential Unit Citation, E.T.O. Ribbon, 3 bronze stars, Purple Heart. Killed in action over Heluestedt, Germany, February 19,1945, while strafing a train. Burial unknown as yet.

Photo of Ora Eugene Gilbert

Marine Co. C, 4th Raider Bn

Entered service July 8, 1940. Overseas, February 1943. Stationed New Hebrides. Killed, June 29,1943 at View Harbor, New Georgia Island, Solomons Group. Decorations: Purple Heart, Distinguished Service Cross, entitled to American Defense Service Medal, Asiatic-Pacific Campaign Medal. Temporary Burial Grave, 467 – U.S. Cemetery, #5, New Guinea, Finschafen.

Photo of John W. Harrison

Co E, 39th Inf.

Entered service April 4, 1944 at age of 18 years, trained at Ft. Leavenworth, Kansas and Oklahoma. Overseas, Europe, in January, 1945, arriving in Belgium January 16, 1945. Killed in action in Germany, March 1, 1945.

Photo of Frank Bonnett


Entered service June 26,1944 at Camp Dodge, Iowa. Took basic training at Camp Robinson, Arkansas. Overseas January 1945. Saw action in France and Germany. Killed in action, April 8, 1945 in Germany. Decorations: Purple Heart. Buried in Metz Cemetery in France.

Photo of Merle E. Vanderhorst

0-771842, 15TH Air Force

Entered service February 21, 1943. Received his wings at Ft Summer, New Mexico, March 12, 1944. Overseas, July 1944. Left Lincoln, Nebraska, flew to Italy August 5,1944. Co-Pilot on a B-24 Liberator Bomber, 724th Bomber Grp and 451 Bomber Grp. Decorations: Air Medal, Purple Heart. Was killed in action on 8th mission by enemy fighters over St. Polten, Austria, August 23, 1944.

Photo of Kenneth Cecil Bunch

Aviation Radioman, 1/c

Entered service March 8,1938, training at San Diego, California. Overseas with Dolittle’s first Bomber Crew over Tokyo. Lost his life in battle of Midway, June 6, 1942. Decorations: Purple Heart, Air Medal for heroism in Midway battle. On May 29, 1943, a destroyer escort was named the U.S.S. Bunch at Bay City, Michigan in his honor. He was the father of three children.

Photo of Kenneth F. Dunkin T/5 KENNETH F. DUNKIN
32nd Red Arrow Div., 37678990
Entered service Jun 26,1943. Overseas, January 1944. Served in New Guinea, Leyte and Philippines. Killed in action May 16,1945 on Villa Verde, Luzon, P.I. Decorations: Purple Heart, Citation award for Leyte. Buried at U.S. Cemetery, Paugasinau Providence, Luzon, P.I.

Contributed by Karyl Bonnett, North Liberty, Iowa, with the permission of Oren Shobe, the present commander of Post #505 (January 2007).