Bernard Flory Obituary

Bernard Isadore Flory
Bernard Isadore Flory

July 31, 1921 - April 30, 2017
Born in Napoleon, Ohio
Resided in Niantic, CT


Lt. Colonel Bernard I. Flory (USAF retired) 1921-2017

Niantic- Bernard Isadore Flory was born July 31, 1921 in Napoleon, Ohio to Urban Isadore Flory and Clara Etta Hettel. At the age of five he and younger brother Andrew lost their father. He graduated from Central Catholic High in Toledo, Ohio in 1939 and then attended the University of Detroit. On December 5, 1943 he received a commission as a first lieutenant in the Army Air Force and then participated in the air offensive of the Normandy Campaign and over northern France. He was awarded the Air Medal with ten Bronze Oak Leaf Clusters and the ETO ribbon with three battle stars.

In France he met Laurence (Laurie) Marie Jacqueline Dardenne and they were married June 23, 1945 in Sacred Heart Church in Nancy, France. After the war he left the Air Corp and returned to the farm in Ohio. It was there that they had the first six of their ten children. He returned to flying joining the Air Force on November 23, 1952 with rank of Captain piloting the C-47 "Gooney Bird" out of Ellington Air Force Base in Houston, Texas. In 1956 he transferred to Dover Air Force Base in Dover, Delaware where he flew the F-94 "Starfighter." He was transferred in 1958 to the 4601st Support Group in Paramus, New Jersey where he was weapons controller. The group's mission was to provide detection and reporting of aircraft in the northern portion of North America and to support Distant Early Warning Line (DEW) radar sites. He spent one year stationed at the DEW line during this time. Then he was assigned to the 961st Airborne Warning and Control Squadron at Otis Air Force Base in Massachusetts in 1960. He flew radar picket patrols over the north Atlantic in the EC-121 "Connie." In 1968 he was stationed at Korat Royal Thai Air Force Base in Thailand during the Viet Nam War where he received the Air Medal being cited for outstanding airmanship and courage as a pilot. In 1971 he retired from the Air Force with the rank of Lieutenant Colonel and moved his family back to Dover in 1972. Shortly thereafter, he and Laurie with their two youngest children returned to France for a year before returning and settling in East Lyme, Connecticut where they built a home at Upper Pattagansett in 1978. He was a member of St. Matthias Catholic Church where he was a sacristan and usher and was a member of Knights of Columbus.

Bernard leaves behind his children Martine, Claude, Patrick (Kelly), Dominic (Jean), Michele Harshman, Colette Lucas, Dennis and Annette Dilweg. He also leaves behind 18 grandchildren and six great-grandchildren. He survived his wife Laurie of 67 years who died in 2012 and his brother Andrew who died in 2013. He also survived two children, Corinne and Marc, and two grandchildren, Rebekah Flory and Eugene Lycin.

All go unto one place; all are of the dust, and all turn to dust again. Who knoweth the spirit of man that goeth upward...(Ecc 3:19-20). As his body returns to the ground he goeth upward beyond the skies where he once set his eyes. Bernard Flory was a known hero to his large family and an unsung hero to a nation which owes him gratitude. There are many words which can describe him; dedication is one. He was dedicated to his church and Catholic heritage; he was dedicated to bringing in the harvest working from dawn to dusk; he was dedicated to serving his country and he was dedicated to his family. He will be missed and remembered.

A Mass of Christian Burial will be held on Monday May 8, 2017 at 11 O'clock at St. Matthias Church 317 Chesterfield Road East Lyme. Interment with military honor will be held at Massachusetts National Cemetery, Bourne, Massachusetts. There are no calling hours. Thomas L. Neilan & Sons East Lyme Funeral Home 48 Grand Street Niantic is in charge of



St. Matthias Church
317 Chesterfield Rd
East Lyme, CT US 06333
Monday, May 8, 2017
11:00 AM

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