Orlyn David Chunat

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Orlyn David Chunat, 91, of Prairie du Chien, died Friday, July 31, at Prairie Maison, Prairie du Chien. 

Orlyn David Chunat was born on Dec. 26, 1923 to George and Lydia (Kuchenbecker) Chunat. He graduated from Wauzeka High School in 1942 and joined the United States Air Force. Orlyn was co-pilot on a B17 named the Lady Alta and was part of the 303rd Bomb Group, 8th U.S. Air Force. On their twenty-first mission, the plane was shot down over Germany. Orlyn was wounded, taken prisoner and considered MIA. He was a POW for approximately five months before the POW camp was liberated by Patton’s 3rd Army.  Orlyn was awarded the Purple Heart.

Orlyn was united in marriage with Marjorie “Peg” (Jones) Herold on Sept. 29, 1946 at the Evangelical United Brethren Church in Wauzeka. Orlyn worked as a cheesemaker and a farmer. During the winter months, he worked as a logger and ran a sawmill. He lived in rural Wauzeka for sixty-eight years. Orlyn was a member of the American Legion and Farm Bureau. He enjoyed square dancing and playing cards with his friends in card club and he loved the “Gran Grae Valley.” 

Orlyn is survived by his wife, Marjorie “Peg” Chunat of Prairie du Chien; children, Ronald Herold of Black River Falls; and Gary Herold of Madison; eight grandchildren, sixteen great-grandchildren, and two great-great grandchildren.

Orlyn was preceded in death by his parents, George and Lydia Chunat; son, Michael Chunat, grandson, Brian Herold and brother, Donald Chunat.

Funeral services will be at 11 a.m. on Saturday, Aug. 8, at Thornburg-Grau Funeral Home and Cremation Service, Prairie du Chien, with Rev. Lynn Schreck as the Officiant. There will also be a visitation from 9 to 11 a.m. on Saturday at the funeral home. Burial will follow at Wauzeka Cemetery, Wauzeka, Wisconsin.

Thornburg-Grau Funeral Home and Cremation Service, Prairie du Chien, Wisconsin is helping the family with the arrangements.

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