RB Donnelly

My father would tell a story of his service in the Army. He served with a fellow named R B Donnelly. That was the fellow's whole name. He was from the south, where people are sometimes named with just letters. The Army, in its infinite wisdom, couldn't cope with that. Every time he had to give his name, they would ask what the R and the B stood for. Then he had to explain how that was his entire name: R B Donnelly. "They didn't stand for anything" he would have to explain. Some clerk came up with the idea of writing his name as R(only) B(only) Donnelly. So for the rest of the war, he was Ronly Bonly Donnelly.

Hmmm.... I chanced to come across this Snopes posting regarding Funny Names. It says "many have claimed their fathers knew someone similarly afflicted", so perhaps the story is apocryphal. Still, I like my father's version better than the standard "Ronly Bonly Jones".

Russell Nelson
Last modified: Wed Oct 22 01:30:18 EDT 2003