Burnell Emery Ray Bandfield, 94, of Ponchatoula, Louisiana died Friday, July 12, 2013. He was born in New England, North Dakota but lived in Waterloo and Cedar Falls, Iowa until joining the U.S. Navy. Master Chief Bandfield (Submarine Service) enlisted in the Navy in November 1940 and attended recruit training at Great Lakes, Illinois and Submarine School at New London, Connecticut. He served in the following submarines -- USS Bonita (SS165), USS Ronquil (SS396), USS Sea Fox (SS399), USS Sea Cat (SS402), USS Manta (SS299), and USS Caiman (SS323). Submarine duty included 12 war patrols during World War II. He also had tours as Electrical Officer in USS Toledo (CA133) and USS McGoffin (APA199). He served at the following shore stations: US Submarine Base Pearl Harbor, Hawaii; Naval Reserve Center Dubuque, Iowa; Naval and Marine Corps Reserve Center Omaha, Nebraska; and Naval Reserve Center Pontiac, Michigan. The three Reserve Centers were continuous duty (1952-1960) as combining TAR (Training and Administration of Reserves) and USN duty. He advanced to E-7 in October 1944; to E-8 in 1960 (as a TAR) off his first E-8/E-9 exam; and to E-9 in 1961 (as USN). He retired via transfer to Fleet Reserve in January 1967 and officially retired November 1970 after 30 years total service. Master Chief Bandfield was employed with U.S. Civil Service February 1967 through February 1991 as a Manpower Analyst on Naval Reserve Headquarters Staffs (Omaha, Nebraska and New Orleans, Louisiana). He attained a GS-12 grade February 1989. He retired February 1991 on his 72nd birthday with a total of more than 50 years affiliation with the U.S. Navy. Master Chief Bandfield was awarded the following decorations: seven Good Conduct medals, Naval Reserve medal, American Defense medal, China Service Medal, two National Defense Service medals, Korean Service medal, Korean United Nations medal and Submarine Combat medal. As a civilian he received the Department of the Navy Meritorious Civilian award, the second highest award given to a civilian by the Navy. Survivors include his wife Dorothy Alice Rowe Bandfield of Ponchatoula; two daughters, Terri Melian, of New Orleans, and Cathy Cox, of Hammond; and two grandchildren, Daniel Cox and Melanie Abshire. He was preceded in death by his parents, Hazel Day Bandfield and Geneva Glass Bandfield; and a son, Robert Burnell Bandfield. Relatives and friends are invited to attend a memorial service at McKneely and Sons Funeral Home in Ponchatoula at 2PM, Saturday, July 20. Visitation will begin at noon. Donations can be made to North Oaks Hospice or Mary Bird Perkins Cancer Center Foundation. Interment will be private. A guest book is available at www.harrymckneely.com.
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Published in The Advocate from July 17 to July 19, 2013