Summary

A Marine Corps officer killed in action during World War II and posthumously awarded the Medal of Honor.

Conflict Period:
World War II 1
Branch:
Marine Corps 1
Rank:
First Lieutenant 1
Birth:
02 May 1910 1
Atlanta, Georgia 2
Tennessee 1
Death:
22 Nov 1943 3
Tarawa, Kiribati 4
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Personal Details

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Person:
Alexander Bonnyman, Jr 1
Also known as: Sandy Bonnyman 5
Hometown: Knoxville 1
Birth:
02 May 1910 1
Atlanta, Georgia 2
Tennessee 1
Male 1
Death:
22 Nov 1943 3
Tarawa, Kiribati 4
Cause: KIA 3
Residence:
Place: New Mexico 2
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Birth:
Mother: Frances Berry 6
Father: Alexander Bonnyman, Sr. 7
Marriage:
Josephine Bell 5
1933 5
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World War II 1

Branch:
Marine Corps 1
Rank:
First Lieutenant 1
Service Start Date:
1942 1
Service End Date:
1943 1
Casualty Cause:
Hostile, Died 1
Casualty Date:
22 Nov 1943 1
Unit:
2nd Battalion, 8th Marines, 2nd Marine Division 7
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Education:
Institution: Princeton University 4
Place: Princeton, NJ 4

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Stories

Thank you Lt. for your service to this great nation and to our Corps...

   I pray that our heavenly Father may assuage the anguish of your bereavement, and leave you only the cherished memory of the loved and lost, and the solemn pride that must be yours to have laid so costly a sacrifice upon the altar of freedom. Yours very sincerely and respectfully, Abraham Lincoln."    The Fallen Limb A limb has fallen from the family tree. I keep hearing a voice that says, "Grieve not for me. Remember the best times, the laughter, the song.  The good life I lived while I was strong. Continue my heritage, I'm counting on you.  Keep smiling and surely the sun will shine through.  My mind is at ease, my soul is at rest. Remembering all, how I truly was blessed. Continue traditions, no matter how small. Go on with your life, don't worry about falls I miss you all dearly, so keep up your chin. Until the day comes we're together again.

To My Dearest Family

To My Dearest Family Some things I'd like to say, 
but first of all to let you know 
that I arrived okay 
I'm writing this from Heaven 
where I dwell with God above 
where there's no more tears 
or sadness there 
is just eternal love 
Please do not be unhappy 
just because I'm out of sight 
remember that I'm with you 
every morning, noon and night 
That day I had to leave you 
when my life on Earth was through 
God picked me up and hugged me 
and He said I welcome you 
It's good to have you back again 
you were missed while you were gone 
as for your dearest family 
they'll be here later on 
I need you here so badly 
as part of My big plan 
there's so much that we have to do 
to help our mortal man 
Then God gave me a list of things 
He wished for me to do 
and foremost on that list of mine 
is to watch and care for you 
And I will be beside you 
every day and week and year 
and when you're sad 
I'm standing there 
to wipe away the tear 
And when you lie in bed at night 
the days chores put to flight 
God and I are closest to you 
in the middle of the night 
When you think of my life on Earth 
and all those loving years 
because you're only human 
they are bound to bring you tears 
But do not be afraid to cry 
it does relieve the pain 
remember there would be no flowers 
unless there was some rain 
I wish that I could tell you 
of all that God has planned 
but if I were to tell you 
you wouldn't understand 
But one thing is for certain 
though my life on Earth is o're 
I am closer to you now 
than I ever was before 
And to my very many friends 
trust God knows what is best 
I'm still not far away from you 
I'm just beyond the crest 
There are rocky roads ahead of you 
and many hills to climb 
but together we can do it 
taking one day at a time 
It was always my philosophy 
and I'd like it for you too 
that as you give unto the World 
so the World will give to you 
If you can help somebody 
who is in sorrow or in pain 
then you can say to God at night 
my day was not in vain 
And now I am contented 
that my life it was worthwhile 
knowing as I passed along the way 
I made somebody smile 
So if you meet somebody 
who is down and feeling low 
just lend a hand to pick him up 
as on your way you go 
When you are walking 
down the street 
and you've got me on your mind 
I'm walking in your footsteps 
only half a step behind 
And when you feel the gentle breeze 
or the wind upon your face 
that's me giving you a great big hug 
or just a soft embrace 
And when it's time for you to go 
from that body to be free 
remember you're not going 
you are coming here to me 
And I will always love you 
from that land way up above 
Will be in touch again soon 
P.S. God sends His Love  

BONNYMAN, ALEXANDER, JR. Rank and organization: First Lieutenant, U.S. Marine Corps Reserves. Born: 2 May 1910, Atlanta, Ga. Accredited to: New Mexico. Citation: For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty as Executive Officer of the 2d Battalion Shore Party, 8th Marines, 2d Marine Division, during the assault against enemy Japanese-held Tarawa in the Gilbert Islands, 20-22 November 1943. Acting on his own initiative when assault troops were pinned down at the far end of Betio Pier by the overwhelming fire of Japanese shore batteries, 1st Lt. Bonnyman repeatedly defied the blasting fury of the enemy bombardment to organize and lead the besieged men over the long, open pier to the beach and then, voluntarily obtaining flame throwers and demolitions, organized his pioneer shore party into assault demolitionists and directed the blowing of several hostile installations before the close of D-day. Determined to effect an opening in the enemy's strongly organized defense line the following day, he voluntarily crawled approximately 40 yards forward of our lines and placed demolitions in the entrance of a large Japanese emplacement as the initial move in his planned attack against the heavily garrisoned, bombproof installation which was stubbornly resisting despite the destruction early in the action of a large number of Japanese who had been inflicting heavy casualties on our forces and holding up our advance. Withdrawing only to replenish his ammunition, he led his men in a renewed assault, fearlessly exposing himself to the merciless slash of hostile fire as he stormed the formidable bastion, directed the placement of demolition charges in both entrances and seized the top of the bombproof position, flushing more than 100 of the enemy who were instantly cut down, and effecting the annihilation of approximately 150 troops inside the emplacement. Assailed by additional Japanese after he had gained his objective, he made a heroic stand on the edge of the structure, defending his strategic position with indomitable determination in the face of the desperate charge and killing 3 of the enemy before he fell, mortally wounded. By his dauntless fighting spirit, unrelenting aggressiveness and forceful leadership throughout 3 days of unremitting, violent battle, 1st Lt. Bonnyman had inspired his men to heroic effort, enabling them to beat off the counterattack and break the back of hostile resistance in that sector for an immediate gain of 400 yards with no further casualties to our forces in this zone. He gallantly gave his life for his country.

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