Central Pacific Combat Actions--152d Engineer (Combat) Battalion--by Robert W. Leister.
Leister was drafted in October 1942 and was sent to Schofield Barracks in Hawaii for basic training. He was later assigned to the 152d Engineer Battalion. Reister describes the operation against the Japanese at Makin Island in November 1943, and the operation against the Marshall and Mariannas Islands in 1944. He describes engineering activities on Saipan, Espiritos Santos and the invasion of Okinawa.
Pearl Harbor Attack--Signal Company Aircraft Warning Service, Hawaii--by Joseph Hogan, 2d
Hogan was commissioned a 2d Lt. in the Signal Corps Reserve upon his graduation from University of Wisconsin in 1938. In September 1941 he was ordered to Hawaii and traveled there on a Matson commercial liner in civilian clothes. In October 1941, Hogan was assigned to the signal company aircraft warning, Hawaii. This unit was responsible for operating the land-based, long-range air search radar system. Hogan describes the installation of the radar sites and the problems with the command structure in reporting from these sites. He gives a detailed description of the actions on December 7, 1941.
78th Fighter Squadron on Iwo Jima-1945-- 15th Fighter Group--by Nick Teresi, 2d Lt.
Terisi describes the activities of the 78th Fighter Squadron, which had been in the Canal Zone before being stationed on Oahu, where it remained until December 1944. Before moving to Iwo Jima, this unit was equipped with P-51s, which were shipped to Saipan where the unit remained until Iwo Jima was secured. Teresi relates in detail the first VLR [Very Long Range Mission]. Since Iwo Jima was about 750 miles from Tokyo, it served as landing area for B-29s which had problems returning from raids on Japan. The 78th Fighter Squadron continued to have VLR missions escorting B-29s until the end of the war.
Occupation Duty in Japan--97th Infantry Division--by Richard H. Wilson, 2d Lt.
After brief service in combat in the E.T.O., the 97th Infantry Division returned to the U.S. at Fort Bragg, North Carolina in July 1945. This division moved briefly to the Philippines and the advanced elements of the 97th Division arrived in Yokahoma in September 1945. Lt. Wilson's FA Bn moved to the Nagano Prefecture, town of Matsumoto, where they were housed in a Japanese air cadet base. This was about 75 miles west-northwest of Tokyo. Wilson describes the type of activities in which his unit was engaged during the occupation.
A Short History of the USS Blue, DD387--by Edward E. Hannah, Sr.
Hannah provides a detailed description of the action of the destroyer, USS Blue, during the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor on December 7, 1941. Hannah had entered the service in the U.S. Navy well before the U.S. entered World War II and describes a bit of his pre-war service. Hannah describes in detail and with some emotion the action in which the USS Blue was so badly damaged that it had to be sunk.
The Human Side of Navy Duty--by Fred Shannon, Electrician, Third Class
Shannon served on the destroyer escort, USS Albert T Harris which was a part of the US Seventh Fleet in the China Seas. This ship was involved in action including pursuit of a Japanese submarine in Mindanao Bay. This submarine was the sub that torpedoed the USS Indianapolis, the ship that carried the atomic bomb that was dropped on Hiroshima. Shannon gives a vivid description of his reaction to the celebration of V-J Day, which involved smoking a cigarette, a practice that he had discontinued when performing sports in the fourth grade.
Send e-mail for the World War II Round Table to Desmond Cook at: Cook.email@example.com