PARK RIDGE, Ill. --
Retired Marine Maj. Donald “Donnie” R. Dunagan, received a letter of appreciation from Capt. Jim Stenger and 1st Lt. Leroy Um on behalf of Brig. Gen. James Bierman, commanding general of Marine Corps Recruit Depot San Diego and the Western Recruiting Region, and Col. Jason Morris, commanding officer of 9th Marine Corps Recruiting District, at Pickwick Theater in Park Ridge, Ill., Oct. 30, 2014.
Dunagan received this letter in recognition of his many years of service in the Marine Corps, while also being honored that night for his continuing contribution to the film industry. The Pickwick Theater hosted the 75th anniversary screening of the movie “Son of Frankenstein”, in which he played the role of Peter Von Frankenstein.
Dunagan was born on Aug. 16, 1934, in San Antonio. His family soon moved to Memphis, Tenn., where Dunagan was spotted by a Hollywood talent scout after winning a talent show contest at the age of three. He and his family then moved to California, where Dunagan began appearing in a series of films, eventually providing the voice of young Bambi in the Walt Disney movie.
In 1952, Dunagan enlisted in the Marine Corps at the age of 18. During his time in the Corps, Dunagan served three tours in Vietnam and was awarded a Bronze Star Medal and received three Purple Heart Medals. He eventually retired in 1977 as a major.
A Marine through and through, Dunagan is very proud of his military service and will boast of his time as a Marine before his career as a child actor.