Unknown Sailor

EM1c William John Bonfiglio

William John Bonfiglio was born in Italy June 23, 1910, and came to the United States with his parents in 1913.

They settled in Elkhart, Indiana, where the parents, James Vincent Bonfiglio and Julia Leonetti Bonfiglio, operated a fruit market.

The son attended Elkhart Central High and worked with this father until enlisting in the Navy on Aug. 5, 1930.

He was an electrician’s mate first class on the U.S.S. Arizona when he was killed in the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor, Dec. 7, 1941.

Mr. Bonfiglio was also survived by his widow, Dorothy Schulet Bonfiglio. They met in New York and married in Los Angeles in April 1935.

On Memorial Day 1942 in Brooklyn, where she was living by then, she unveiled a list of 201 local men serving in the military. The list was dedicated by a priest, a rabbi and various government officials. About 5,000 people attended the ceremony and a parade.


Sources: The South Bend (Indiana) Tribune; The Brooklyn (New York) Daily Eagle; The Goshen (Indiana) News; Census; grave markers; California marriage record; Indiana death records; 1942 Elkhart Central High School yearbook. Naval History and Heritage Command photo. This profile was researched and written on behalf of the U.S.S. Arizona Mall Memorial at the University of Arizona.

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