Article by Ruth Rollins, Eagle Times, November 21, 2017
Original Article at https://www.eagletimes.com/articles/bud-stone-receives-boston-post-cane-in-cornish/
CORNISH — Bernard “Bud” Stone, a Cornish resident for more than 60 years, received a surprise visit Friday, Nov. 10, from town selectboard members Scott Baker, Ginny Wood and John Hammond.
“We are here to give you the Boston Post Cane as the oldest citizen,” said Hammond.
The cane was one of the many that the Boston Post presented each New Hampshire town to be passed on at the current holder’s death.
Scott Baker, the son of Stone’s best friend, Roland Baker, presented the cane, which meant a lot to Stone.
“I didn’t think I’d ever live this long,” he said.
Stone was born Aug. 19, 1924, to parents Harold and Willa Stone. The family moved to Plainfield when Stone was young, and he attended the two-room school there, presently the Smith Auction House.
He went on to Windsor High School, where as a senior he received his greetings from Uncle Sam on April 1, 1942, “which was no April fool’s joke,” said Stone.
A physical at Manchester found him a member of the United States Army. A short three days home found him leaving for Fort Devan, Massachusetts, from there to Fort Knox, Kentucky for tank driver training and further training at Fort Meade, Maryland.
After training, he was given two days to return to Plainfield to say his goodbyes to family and sent overseas. “We were put on a ship that was no cruise ship, which took 13 days on rocky seas, many of us ill all the way. Arriving in England I received more training. I was assigned to Company D of the 32nd Spearhead Division in the 32nd regiment as a tank driver. As the Spearhead Division crossed the European theater through Belgium and France many battles took place with casualties. It was rough, wet weather conditions, deep mud, raw cold and minefields tearing tank tracks and boggy wheels off made for a miserable bloody struggle and continued costly advances,” he said.
The ultimate engagement was the Battle of the Bulge, where the war was finally won.
“One very early hour in the morning the Germans got ahead of us. We slept in pup tents next to our tanks, when shelling began we crawled out of our tent, with no way to get into the tank. I was wounded and my buddy was killed,” Stone said.
When rescued, Stone was taken to a tent hospital, where he had surgery to stop serious bleeding. Unable to accomplish that, he was sent to a hospital back in France for more surgery, and later sent to the channel for a boat ride back to England, where he was hospitalized for two months.
Unable to remove shrapnel through all the surgeries, he still has it in his body, which has caused him much grief over the years.
Following hospitalization, he was sent back to Germany, where the Battle of the Bulge was continuing because many casualties demanded help.
When the war ended most of his company was sent home. However, he had to fill out his tour of duty. He was presented a purple heart and given an honorable discharge. Bernard was one of four Stone sons serving. One who did not return.
He is a 75-year member of the Plainfield Blow-Me-Down Grange and a very active 60-year member of Cheshire Mt. Vernon Masonic Lodge and a past state officer.