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0273-W2M-05/2006
Dudley H. Boddie
WWII US Military
Dates of Service: 10/14/1941 - 10/26/1945
Medical Equipment Maintenance Technician
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Dudley was born in Waller, Texas, to David Boddie, a Methodist minister, and Ella Mae Kegler Boddie. While Dudley was still an infant the family moved to Louisiana where his father was pastor at churches in several towns, including Rochelle, Glenmora, Opelousas, Oakdale, and Pineville. Graduating from Bolton High School in 1936 he entered Centenary College and majored in music. In January of 1938 he joined the choir at Noel Methodist Church, where he has remained 64 years. Dudley was drafted October 14, 1941, and was in basic training at Camp Croft in Spartanburg, South Carolina, when the Japanese attacked Pearl Harbor. After basic he was sent to Fort Custer, Michigan, then sailed in April of 1942 aboard the Chamberlain as part of a convoy to Iceland. Assigned to a medical detachment in the 11th Infantry, he lived in a Nissen hut on the north side of the island and worked in what he calls "a form of a hospital" assembled from "remains of some huts." Returning to the States on August 15, 1943, he was sent to Camp Forrest in Tennessee, and assigned to the 46th Medical Depot Company. Later, at a school in St. Louis, he learned to repair "anything a hospital might use." He sailed to England on November 21, 1944 aboard the Queen Elizabeth. Entering Europe at LeHavre, France, he traveled to Marseilles where his medical equipment repair shop was set up in four floors of a flourmill. Dudley left for America on October 8, 1945. He was discharged as a staff sergeant on October 26, 1945 at Camp Shelby near Hattiesburg, Mississippi. Dudley re-entered Centenary College and graduated in the summer of 1946. On September 11, 1946, he married Thomasine Armstrong whom he met at the music school. They had two children and one grandchild. After earning his masters at Peabody College in Nashville in arts and education. He taught and served as a school counselor, ending his career as principal of Queensborough Elementary School in 1973.