RAYMOND DONOVAN is the son of Maurice (Mossie) and Rachel Shannon Donovan. He was born on May 28, 1920, in Bernard, Dubuque County, Iowa.
Following graduation from Garryowen high school, Ray valiantly served in WWII with the “Fighting 509” Parachute Infantry Battalion—the most decorated paratroop battalion in the European theater—joining the first soldiers to jump in combat history during the invasion of North Africa. Ray’s service continued with battles in Italy and France, earning him a Bronze Star for meritorious achievement during the Battle of Azio (February 1944) and a Purple Heart citation before seeing his last combat at the Battle of the Bulge (December 1944–January 1945), the last major German offensive campaign on the Western Front.
After returning from military service, Ray opened the Bernard branch of the Maquoketa State Bank. He later served as US Postmaster in Bernard until his retirement.
He married Doris Dunn. They had seven children:
- Robert Donovan
- William Donovan
- Luann Donovan Scherer
- Nancy Donovan Schoon
- Mary Donovan Sweeney
- John Donovan
- Ann Donovan Miller
Ray died on June 10, 2016. He is buried in St. Patrick’s Cemetery, Garryowen, Iowa.