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Paul Stephen De Bord

1920 - 2014 Obituary Condolences
Paul Stephen De Bord Obituary

Paul S. DeBord

Paul S. DeBord, 94, passed away peacefully Monday, April 14, 2014, surrounded by family. He was born April 7, 1920 in Creston, IA, to the late Ora and Mary DeBord.

Paul attended St. Malickey's Catholic Grade school and Creston High School. He joined the band in 7th grade and continued his dedication to music throughout his high school years. He also played football, basketball, baseball, belonged to the Glee Club and a Sextet. After high school, he traveled in the Midwest region with several dance and swing bands; to include playing with Lawrence Welk Band.

Paul enlisted in the Army on Aug. 31, 1940. He volunteered for the Philippines and was assigned to Battery F 60 C.A.C. May 1942, he was captured when Corregidor Island fell and spent 3½ years as a prisoner of war. He attributes his survival of this difficult time to prayer and the help of his Army buddies. In Aug. 1945, the Seabees rescued Paul and others. In the USA, he was taken to Schick General Hospital, Clinton, IA. It was there he met Army nurse, Capt. Geneva Perius. She became his wife on June 4, 1946, in Wales, ND.

After he and Geneva married, he re-enlisted in the Army and began his "peace time" military career. He served at Fort Stevens near Astoria, OR, Fort Levine, WA, Fort Bliss, TX and then to Fort Ord, to a Basic Training Center in Dec. 1946. At Fort Ord, he trained troops to go to the Korea Theater of Combat.

In the summer of 1951, Paul received orders for Salzburg, Austria and Verona, Italy. He and family returned to the USA Jan. 1955. He served in Georgia and Oklahoma. In Oklahoma, he was the regional director for the National Guard in Northern Oklahoma. While there, in Oct. 1958, he received orders for a Special Mission in Iran as a military adviser. Upon his return from Iran, he transferred to Fort Ord in Jan. 1960, as Company Commander, D Company. Captain DeBord retired from the military in Oct. 1960. He was awarded numerous citations and letters of commendation including the bronze star with cluster for his meritorious service in active combat as well as stateside and European Theaters.

After Paul's military retirement, he worked for Prudential Insurance, taught band at Palma High School and manager of the Queen of Heaven Cemetery. He has been active also in military, church and community organizations throughout the years. Military organizations included: American Legion, VFW, Disabled Veterans, Defenders of Bataan and Corregidor and WW II POW's.

For the past 53 years, Paul was an active member of the St. Vincent de Paul Society, a Catholic outreach organization to help the homeless and those less fortunate. For much of that time, he had been the President, adviser and an inspiration for the continued success of the program in this area.

He was a faithful and active member of the Sacred Heart Catholic Church since 1960. He had also been a member of the Knights of Columbus, Council 1948. He served as Grand Knight for two separate terms.

Paul was active with the Monterey County Food Bank. They nominated him for the 37th Annual Volunteer Center's Community Service Award for a Lifetime of Service in 2013. Along with this award, he received one city, two county, two state, and two national commendations. Other organizations he participated in was the Legion of Mary, Association of the Miraculous Medal, Monterey County Stamp Club, and American Philatelic Society.

The family would like to express their sincere thanks to Salinas Valley Memorial Hospital, The Ridge Rehabilitation Center, and the dedicated caregivers that attended him at home.

Paul is survived by daughter, Marie Woods (Paul); sons, Tom (Mamie), Chuck (Shannon), Phillip (Hilda), Dan (Kay); 10 grandchildren, 11 great-grandchildren, one great-great-grandchild and numerous nieces and nephews.

He was preceded in death by his wife, Geneva; sons, Paul and Stephen and brother, John.

Visitation will be held from 1 to 9 p.m. Tuesday, April 22, 2014; with a Rosary Vigil at 7 p.m., all at Healey Mortuary, 405 N. Sanborn Road, Salinas, CA 93905.

A Funeral Mass with Military Honors will take place at 10 a.m. Wednesday, April 23, 2014, at Sacred Heart Catholic Church, 22 Stone St., Salinas, CA 93901.

Inurnment will follow at the Queen of Heaven Cemetery in Salinas.

In lieu of flowers, Paul requested donations be made to the St. Vincent de Paul Society, Sacred Heart Conference, 26 Stone St., Salinas, CA 93901.

Arrangements are entrusted to the Healey Mortuary & Crematory,


Published in The Salinas Californian on Apr. 19, 2014
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