Thomas Bohn

Posted by Rebekah
Sep 12 2010

Today, the Fliers who were dropped in Kalgoorlie are boarding another plane headed back to Fremantle.  The Investigation starts tomorrow.

But on a slightly separate note, I’ve had the honor of helping a Flier family the past few weeks, and thought I’d share the story.

Near the time of the memorial, the niece of Electrician’s Mate Thomas Bohn of Easton Pennsylvania, contacted me, telling me about her relation Bohn, and they couldn’t make it to the memorial service.  Since they couldn’t travel to Michigan, they were working on putting the money together to set a stone memorializing Bohn near his parent’s graves in the hometown cemetery.  While the headstone was provided by the government (there’s something I don’t mind paying for with my taxes!) it was going to cost a pretty penny to simply purchase the granite and set it.

Thoma Bohn, age 18 on August 13, 1944. His family knew him for ever as "Uncle Sonny". As it turned out, over the course of asking questions of his only remaining sibling, he wasn't altogether fond of the nickname!

We started working back and forth and together, wrote and submitted a series of press releases to the local papers and television stations telling the story of Bohn and his family’s efforts to memorialize him.  It has lead to an outpouring of funds so Bohn will not only be able to have his headstone set in place, but possibly also a scholarship fund for a student at his alma mater Wilson High School.

It has been a fun time to work with another family, and been great to see these men receiving their memorials that has been so long in waiting, and been amazing to help these people discover these relatives that they never knew, and learn more in turn.  Just asking these questions and listening to the stories has lead to more stories come to light that otherwise might have remained hidden.

THIS is what I find so rewarding about what I do.

To read the articles about this process, see below!

The first article that appeared about Thomas Bohn

And the follow up article from two days later

The article that appeared this morning

The News Station Report. (I originally posted the video link here, but it kept playing automatically, so I removed it. You can see it right here. I think it’s really really good.)

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