Bridgeport connection in graphic novel

Photo provided Jonathan Sandler of London holds his new graphic novel, The English GI, that has a Bridgeport connection.

BRIDGEPORT — Jonathan Sandler, a resident of London, has just published his grandfather’s World War II memoirs into a graphic novel, “The English GI,” that includes a Bridgeport connection.

Sandler’s grandfather, Bernard Sandler, an Englishman, served in the 26th Infantry of the U.S. Army. In his memoir, he recalled his close friend John Ebert, who was tragically killed in action on Nov. 10, 1944, in France. Ebert, who was from Bridgeport, was tragically killed four days before his 21st birthday. Sandler wanted to find out more about John Ebert and also ensure that his memory was preserved.

”There was little information available, but I soon discovered an incredible non-profit initiative set up by Don Milne (of Louisville, Kentucky) called Stories Behind the Stars.

It was created to document the stories of all 421,000 U.S. soldiers whose lives were lost in World War II using a team of volunteers,” he said.

“I then found Hudson Louie, a student from Medina, Ohio, who has been writing about Ohio’s fallen World War II service members since August 2020.

Louie did the research and even found out he was a distant relative of the Ebert family through marriage.”

Ebert grew up in Bridgeport. His father worked as a machinist at the Wheeling Steel Corporation, in West Virginia, right across the Ohio River.

He attended the local schools in Bridgeport before graduating from Bridgeport High School in 1942.

He was a hardworking student as a member of the National Honors Society and joined the high school scholarship team. In World War II Ebert and Sandler were sent back to Europe as part of the 26th Infantry.

Sandler’s grandson captures the memorable voyage from New York to Cherbourg, France in his book: The English GI: World War II Graphic Memoir.

They served in the brutal Lorraine Campaign in the Fall of 1944 under Patton’s Third Army, where Ebert was tragically killed.

Two years ago, Sandler was re-reading his grandfather’s wartime memoirs; his story had been sitting on the shelf for quite some time. His grandfather was an English schoolboy who by circumstances was stuck, ended up in the United States in 1939 when Britain declared War. Jonathan has captured his story into a graphic novel depicting his whole experience, from a young schoolboy alone in the vast metropolis of New York – through to him being called up to the U.S. Army. It is now available on Amazon.com: “The English GI: World War II Graphic Memoir.”


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