In 1942, Carl attended the Montana University in Missoula, in the Forest Department.
He participated to the Sigma Nu Fraternity.
His first name comes from his father, Carl Tosten BONDE.
His second forename comes from his maternal uncle, Ralph WICKSTROM.
Carl was the youngest of 6 siblings (he was the only boy). His parents originated from Norway.
Carl was very clever and excellent in mathematics.
He perfectly succeeded in the military aptitude tests.
He was selected for the Army Specialized Training Unit.
To enter this program, an IQ of about 150 was required.
He participated to the program in the North Dakota University.
He did 2 or 3 semesters before the Army Specialized Training Unit was abandoned. Afterwards, he was assigned to the 262nd Infantry Regiment at Fort Robinson.
According to his sisters, Carl loved hunting and fishing.
The 66th Infantry Division, the Company E and the Weapon Platoon with Carl crossed the Atlantic by boat in late November.
They celebrated Thanksgiving on board of the troops transport ship, the GEORGE WASHINGTON.
They landed in Southampton, England.
The Division crossed the Channel on the following day to reach Cherbourg on two Belgian ships, the CHESIRE and the LEOPOLDVILLE.
Carl was accommodated near the place hit by the torpedo. He was on the bridge F.
Carl was apparently resting after travelling all night.
On December 23, 1944, they took the train to embark.
Early in the following morning, they waited on the Southampton dock, on board of the troops transport ship, the SS LEOPOLDVILLE.
There were only 10 survivors within the Company E and 23 missing.
According to testimonies, the survivors of this Company were getting some fresh air on the Leopoldville’s deck.
The captain of the U-486, Lieutenant Gerhard MEYER, launched the torpedoes.
The first torpedo missed but the second one hit the SS Leopoldville on starboard, below the water line.
The German torpedo scrapped the troops transport ship LEOPOLDVILLE only five miles away from Cherbourg, its destination. 14 officers and 748 men were lost.
See the story of the LEOPOLDVILLE.