Alden Joseph Bonang, 89: Teacher, genius at electronics and repairs

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BRUNSWICK – Alden Joseph Bonang, 89, died Oct. 5, at Mid Coast Senior Health Center in Brunswick. He was born May 18, 1926, in Brunswick, the son of Frederick and Marie Theriault Bonang.

Bonang attended St. John’s School and Brunswick High School. He served with the Air Force, where he worked on B17 and B25 planes during the end of World War II. He returned home to graduate from high school in 1947.

On May 31, 1948, Bonang married Emelda M. Landglais.

Radios became Bonang’s favorite pastime. He became an amateur radio operator whose handle was KICAH, and served as a civil defense radio operator. Throughout his life, Bonang built antenna towers around his home and electronics such as radios and receivers. Bonang worked as a service manager at Brunswick Ford for over 20 years, and then earned his teaching certificate and taught automotive classes at Morse High School in Bath for 17 years. Bonang retired in 1986.

Bonang was a Jack of all trades who built a house for his family, a summer cottage in St. Albans, a camping trailer and helped build his son’s house. When his sons needed their first vehicles, he worked on and presented each with a 1948 Ford pickup. He could repair anything that was made of wood or metal, along with electronics and engines.

Bonang and his wife traveled to many places around the United States, Canada, Mexico and Bermuda. They wintered in Palm Bay, Florida for 10 years with his brother and sister-in-law, Roy and Jeanne Rochon, who were often their traveling companions.

Bonang was predeceased by his parents; three sisters, Melba and Annette Bonang of Brunswick and Theodora Seymour of Arlington, Virginia; and his grandson, Dane Bonang of Wiscasset.

He is survived by his wife of 67 years; three sons, Paul Bonang of Topsham, Richard Bonang of Topsham and Allan Bonang of Wiscasset; a daughter, Barbara Bonang of Topsham; nine grandchildren; nine great-grandchildren; two brothers, Raymond Bonang of Saco and Claude Bonang of Brunswick; three sisters, Ella Caron of Lewiston, Louise Marchildon and Lorraine Gingras of Manchester; along with a number of nieces and nephews.

A Mass of Christian Burial was celebrated Oct. 9 at St. John the Baptist Church in Brunswick. Memorial contributions may be made to St. John’s School, 39 Pleasant St., Brunswick, ME.