Veterans Voices: Heroes in the FOX40 family

Veterans Voices

Many of us here at FOX40 have family who served in the armed forces and we want to honor their contribution, fighting to protect our country.

Martina Del Bonta – Her grandfather, Royal Matthews, eager to serve his country, lied about his age to join the army at just 17. At Pearl Harbor, he stared chaos in the eye, manning machine guns in a torpedo plane. He also served as a scout during World War II, and rose to lieutenant colonel serving in Korea. 

Her grandfather Martin served in the U.S. Army Air Corps during WWII and his brother, uncle Ed, served in General Patton’s Third Army from D-Day to the end of the war, as a master sergeant.

Her cousin, Sergeant First Class John Webster, served in the Army for two tours in Iraq. His lasting memory is the people he served with — they became his family, his everything.

Rowena Shaddox – Lieutenant Florencio Marivilla Llorenta, who she would call Lolo (Tagalog for grandfather), served in the Army Coast Artillery Corps. He was a WWII veteran, prisoner of war and a proud survivor of the Bataan March of Death. Living through the unthinkable,  Lt. Llorente miraculously survived on the strength he found within.

Emmanuel Chin – Called a spiritual hero, Alexander Chin served in the Vietnam War. As a young Marine, he served and died alongside a chaplain, in his mission to protect and assist him as they administered first aid and last rites to marines in the trenches. Known as “Rev,” Chin was laid to rest in Arlington National Cemetery, on Chaplain’s Hill, next to the man he vowed to serve.

Howard Coyle – Philip Waidler Coyle, father of FOX40 photojournalist Howard Coyle, joined the marines in 1952, at 23 years old. Operating behind enemy lines, he was a forward scout in the Korean War, calling in coordinates for artillery strikes on the enemy. After the war, he graduated from Harvard Law School, and raised a family of seven.

Darla Weaver – Sergeant Don Weaver served almost five years in the U.S. Marines, joining when he was just 17 years old. He was a part of the artillery battalion at the Kaneohe Bay Air Station in Honolulu, Hawaii. Weaver then worked for the U.S. Postal Service and settled in Sacramento with his wife and two kids.

Sonseeahray Tonsall – Her grandfather, William Tonsall, fought in WWII, joining the U.S. Army just after the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor. He served as 1st Sergeant for the 47th Quartermaster Battalion.

His son, Sonseeahray’s father, Dr. William H. Tonsall, served from October 1964 to September 1967 as an optometry officer in the flight surgeon’s office of the U.S. Air Force.

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