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LETTER: Knifley has lost one of its best: Herman Chelf
I was very sorry to hear of the death of Herman Chelf. He was a major influence on my life.
Back when Herman first began carrying the mail, his route was across the creek and up some very bad roads to the north or somewhere near Roley.
I would ride with him and we would talk for hours. His stories were one of the factors in my departing Knifley at the age of 13 for the U.S. Navy. He was indeed a first class citizen.
One of Herman's most emotional stories concerned a fellow Knifleyan. I didn't make it overseas until I was 14, but I remember back in those days before e-mail television OR in most cases calls home, meeting someone from Knifley while 5 or 10 thousand miles away was a little like reincarnation.
Herman had such an event being stationed with Edward Bottoms, son Of Marion and Ida. It may have been in the "Battle for The Bulge." Edward was shot in the chest and killed instantly. Herman was an eyewitness.It distressed him greatly to talk about that but I suspect it was a little therapeutic and since I knew and liked all the Bottoms. We commiserated a lot.
I don't know if he ever discussed those details with anyone else so I won't.
Knifley has lost one of it's best.
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