Volume Three.   World War II Stories from Online Readers

Readers with World War II Stories they would like to submit to this site can forward them to ernie@ols.net

These stories were originally from the JB Davis site, "54 Years and Remembering" Which disappeared from the Internet a few years back.

 

Subject: My father's role in the Bulge
From: noel@umbc2.umbc.edu (Noel J. Tominack, UCS, X3861)
 

Since I am at home, I decided to get another quick war story from him, I asked "What did you do during the Battle of the Bulge?" My father, a Corporal in the US 7th Army Motor Pool, said they left from Nancy, France for a town called Mulhouse. His company's mission was to evacuate as many vehicles, parts and equipment as possible.

He said it was no picnic, driving a Dodge 6X6 truck in the snow in relatively hilly country. He personally brought back tank engines in his truck. While there, the Germans had advanced to within 11 miles of his position. The next day, the few people left were ordered to drop thermite bombs on the same components of whatever vehicles and parts were left, that way if the equipment was captured, it was unusable.

For the weapons curious, my father carried an M1 carbine (probably a Winchester at this point) and had a M1903 Springfield bolt-action rifle in a rack on the truck.

More stories will follow as I get them.
 

 
 

 

Volume Three.   World War II Stories from Online Readers

Readers with World War II Stories they would like to submit to this site can forward them to ernie@ols.net

These stories were originally from the JB Davis site, "54 Years and Remembering" Which disappeared from the Internet a few years back.



Subject: My father's role in the Bulge
From: noel@umbc2.umbc.edu (Noel J. Tominack, UCS, X3861)
 

Since I am at home, I decided to get another quick war story from him, I asked "What did you do during the Battle of the Bulge?" My father, a Corporal in the US 7th Army Motor Pool, said they left from Nancy, France for a town called Mulhouse. His company's mission was to evacuate as many vehicles, parts and equipment as possible.

He said it was no picnic, driving a Dodge 6X6 truck in the snow in relatively hilly country. He personally brought back tank engines in his truck. While there, the Germans had advanced to within 11 miles of his position. The next day, the few people left were ordered to drop thermite bombs on the same components of whatever vehicles and parts were left, that way if the equipment was captured, it was unusable.

For the weapons curious, my father carried an M1 carbine (probably a Winchester at this point) and had a M1903 Springfield bolt-action rifle in a rack on the truck.

More stories will follow as I get them.
 

 


* Noel J. Tominack (noel@umbc2.umbc.edu) | proud son of a WWII vet
* University of Maryland Baltimore County | Crpl. Ivan Louis Tominack
* All opinions are mine mine mine!| US 7th Army

Subject: Re: War Stories (was My father's role in the War)
From: marks84609@aol.com

When the Japanese bombed Pearl Harbor, my father was on a troopship out of San Francisco en route to the Phillipines with an Army Air Corps unit. Fortunately, the ship turned around and returned to port when notified of the attack. If it had proceeded, the ship would have been in time for the passengers to be caught up in the fall of the Phillipines. He was then sent up to Seattle and assigned to the Seattle Air Defense Command working in the communications center.

Any interesting story from that period was the Japanese seaplane, launched from a sub, which had based itself on a lake up in the mountains east of the city. On foggy days, it would nip out and fly low along the waterfront bank and make a turn past the Bremerton Navy Yard doing reconnaissance. He once saw the plane as it passed by the Frye Hotel where the air defense guys were operating from. They never got the interceptors up from Mchord Field in time to try and bag the plane. Then it stopped. No radar detects or visual sightings. They assumed it had either flown out to the coast and been picked up by a sub or had augered into the ground or a mountain somewhere. Several years later, he heard that the wreckage had been found on the side the mountain he had crashed into.

After the tour in Seattle, Dad was sent over to participate in the Phillipines, again with an Air Corps unit but functioning as an MP this time. They went in on the fourth wave. Didnt see any combat. After marking time there, it was off to Okinawa and that invasion.

When the A bombs were dropped, he was aboard ship again awaiting word for the invasion of Japan to begin. It didnt happen and he went with the occupation forces and assigned to Tachikawa Air Base. After a year, it was back to Seattle and up to Paine Field where he was in charge of radar detachment.
 
 



Subject: What my dad did...
From: GMon6612@aol.com

Recently a friend of ours sent me the following article from my dad's local newspaper (the "Pike County Herald" (?) (Mississippi), dated August 19, 1943.  My dad was a navigator with the 96th BG, 8th AF, Snetterton Heath, England. This is the text of a letter he sent to the paper in July '43.

Dear Mr. and Mrs. Lacy:

The first "Herald" I've received since arriving in England [in May '43] came in today. Need I say, it was welcomed with "open arms." It certainly did look good to me.

The "With our Service Men" column was the first thing I read. In it was a letter from ... an old class mate.... Strange, he must have been sent to the opposite corner of the globe.... He must be terribly bored and homesick, but "darnit" I'm homesick, too.  His social life is nonexistent while, in England, only an occasional "scrap" breaks into our enjoyment of the quite lanes and hedges (and London). So I consider myself very lucky.We have good quarters and food; the British are very nice to us; and it is not too long a ride to continental Europe.

The climate here is amazing -- I consider myself lucky about that, too -- Mother writes that you are having heat waves.We have had a British style heat wave here. Everybody had to pull off their jackets and run around in just woolen shirt and pants -- can you feature that though? Woolens in July! And comfortable too!

I've been to London several times and thouroughly enjoyed every trip.  Naturally, I made the familiar rounds: Breakfast at the "Dorchester"; noon at "St. Paul's"; tea......"Hyde Park"; sunset at "Westminster's" and blackout in "Picadilly". A 24 hour pass can click by pretty rapidly there. And my! How the pounds do fly! For one month the schedule is like this: First pass -- London. Second pass -- nearest town. Third pass -- a day in the country. Fourth pass -- a walk down the road a way. The pound situation is serious late in the month.

In spite of all the tales you have heard, the blackout isn't so dangerous, and neither are these raids, BUT the English bycicles are. The first thing I did over here was go for a bike ride, go too fast around a curve and meet another 'cycle, back peddled all over the place (these darn bikes have hand brakes), executed two quick snap rolls and landed on may face. After that I was convinced I had to learn first. Now you should see me. I still go around corners too fast, still meet people and can't stop, still snap roll over the handle bars, but I don't land on my face any more.  You can tell I'm enjoying myself, and that I like England.

Wish you were here (instead of me).

Yours,

Bill Jones
 

[Lt. William M. Jones, Navigator, 96th BG, 8th AF.  The 96th BG was the lead group on the August 17, 1943, mission to Regensburg. Col. C. Lemay flew in the lead airplane of the group, after ousting the Group CO, Col. A. Old. Lt. Jones was promoted to Group Navigator on Oct. 19, 1943, following the second Schweinfurt mission of Oct. 14th, in which the 96th BG led the 3rd Division.]
 
 



Subject: New War Story
From: Denver G. Sliger
FLYING "CATS" IN THE ALEUTIANS DURING WORLD WAR II
By Denver G. "Glenn" Sliger, USN, Retired
 

NOTE TO THE READER: The following profile was prepared by Glenn Sliger for the "Silver Eagles Association" prior to his death in February, 1996. If you knew Glenn, please contact his wife Agie at 8088 Mission Vista Drive, San Diego, CA  92120.
 

To: Silver Eagles Association
Pensacola, Fla.
From: Denver G. Sliger

This may not adhere to the word "Profile," but it is meant to serve for it. The events were high lights during my "Aviator" life. I received my wings as an AMM 1/c (AP) in February 1942. My next assignment was with VP - 61, then being formed at NAS Alameda. Prior to Flight Training, I had served in a Patrol Squadron (VP - 18). From that experience I decided that single engine aircraft were for me rather than multi-engine seaplanes. I could not see being a co-pilot for the long time that was the policy at that time. While in training at Pensacola I was selected to go to CV (aircraft carrier) training and with only one training flight to complete, Pensacola received instructions to stop sending enlisted students to CV training at Miami. This was because of Admiral King, boss of the Atlantic Fleet, who stated "No more white hats" as pilots in his fleet. Old timers know his reason.

My only P.C. in VP - 61 (for 18 months; Training and Operational) I would classify as non-aggressive, non-heroic, and non-informative. The first harrowing experience that I had went like this:

After the Japanese struck Midway Island in June 1942, all the available PBY's (Catalinas, or simply "CATS") were shuttled north from the West Coast to the Aleutians. About July, three crews from VP - 61 were ordered to Seattle to ferry PBY's to Kodiak Island.  All three crews luckily arrived intact at Kodiak (Seattle--Sitka--Kodiak). Our crew and one other one was then assigned to ferry two beat up PBY's back to Seattle. We left Kodiak for Sitka in a heavy rain storm with only minimum radio equipment, no radar, ADF, etc. The P.C. soon goes to sleep so I navigate out of the Kodiak Range into the Sitka Range Let at about 50 feet above water, also with the other plane on our wing. They could work CW radio, but not voice. With navigation being done by guessing, my attention was "ahead" and to any changes in sea conditions.

Knowing that we should be nearing the Sitka area, I saw ground swells appear, woke up the P.C. just as we saw surf. He grabs the controls, pulls up into the rain clouds, did a 180, let down outbound and when we regained visibility returned inbound. With everyone alert this time, we managed to see an island outline, veered around it and landed immediately.

How we missed the island the first time, who knows? We had no knowledge of the other plane or just how far we were from Sitka. We somehow established radio communication with Sitka during the night and they found us and towed us in. We eventually learned that the other plane avoided the islands, landed, and taxied onto the first sandy beach that was seen. Both planes eventually arrived at Seattle for overhaul.

That trip was my first lesson in always being super-alert if I wished to stay alive.

By early August 1942, VP - 61 flew north to Kodiak then Dutch Harbor with PBY's (just seaplane version).Within a week after arriving at Dutch Harbor, three crews including ours were sent to Atka Bay to run patrols westward. We refueled daily from a tender (converted 4 stack DD). The only islands supposedly occupied by the Japanese were Attu and Kiska.

On one of our early patrols we spotted a Jap float plane near Kiska. I don't believe we were ever seen. The USAAF (P-38's) were destroying them as fast as they were replaced!

With all the monotonous hours of flying patrols in the Aleutians during 1942-1943, I think our crew was involved in most of the reportable incidents. They follow:

On a clear day, west of Attu, we spotted two destroyers (Japanese) heading toward us. We were flying at about 100' above the sea. When they spotted us, they did a 180o turn to the west. We reported their position and climbed to altitude to drop four 500 lb Army Air Corps provided bombs (nose fused).  They had then been on wing racks for probably 30 salt water take off and landings. After we dropped them toward the DD's, we never saw an explosion, splash, or anything. After that patrol we returned to Dutch Harbor for bomb replacement. The ordnance people listened to our story and were convinced that I had not armed the bombs. I showed them the racks, and when convinced that the right procedure had been followed, they began to investigate.

They found that all bombs which had been on the racks for a number of salt water operations were so corroded at the nose fuses, none would work properly. Hence, our armament was changed to Navy type depth charges. After that, our crew made periodic drops of them and found a high failure rate.

During probably the last large USAAF strike on Kiska, a B-25 crew ditched in Kiska Harbor and we rescued them in their life rafts before the cold water got them. We returned them to Amchitka Base safely.

We covered (ASW) the U.S. Task Force enroute to the Attu landing for three days prior. Then we did ASW patrol around the anchored ships during the landing. Near the end of the first day on station (P.C. asleep) I am guiding the aircraft around the outer ships and beyond when I spot some peculiar spray off the waves. As I crossed it I looked back or to the left and could see a water path. Now the P.C. is awake and we follow the path to its end and drop flares. By then we were sure it was a torpedo path heading for the control ship. It missed by a mile!

We called the DD's and they made several drops while we stayed there -- no results. When we came on station the next morning they reported destroying a 2-man submarine. I saw in Navy Publications, later, where each DD Skipper received awards for their effort. (My alertness started it!)

Battle of the Komandorski's -- This was a surface engagement between a small U.S. Task Force and a Japanese Force which was followed by two heavily loaded transports. When they broke off, the U.S. Force headed East, one ship leaking fuel.

Our crew had just taken off that morning when we received word to proceed to the position of the engagement.It appeared to be about 5 hours away. During the trip we came across our own Task Force, communicated with them and then followed their oil slick westward. When it ended we did a standard search and came across the 2 heavily loaded transports. We sent position reports for about 2 hours and headed for home base. We landed after dark on a USAAF Fighter Strip at Amchitka. (25 Gal. in each tank!)

One incident funny to me and another one not so funny are below:

After getting PBY-Amphibians and our crew had adapted to Aleutian flying pretty good, we were sent into Adak one morning. The weather was low visibility due to snow squalls. We succeeded to get in the Bay area "Bush Pilot Style" up over a sand dune and landed on the Marston Matting. After we landed, we learned that a whole squadron was "grounded because of weather." One had to laugh at their hustle to get airborne after we came in.

The other incident was after our squadron was relieved by PV-l's. Our crew drew the hangar queen to fly home. Wouldn't you know, after about an hour in the air we had an engine quit. Practically a full load of fuel plus 13 people. We got the plane onto the rough water, but before we got in to the Amelia Island coast it sank. Three days later we were picked up by another PBY.

In 1944, I went to the Pacific in a PBM Squadron (PBM-3D) (VP - 19). The most effort during that tour was our open sea operation during the landing at Iwo Jima. We patrolled toward Japan plotting their line of picket boats who reported B-29 runs toward Tokyo. All "take-offs" were JATO assisted. We had everything but normal seaplane conditions. In the early 50's, I did a tour in Japan. On one trip scheduled from Itazuki AFB, I was in line for T.O. in a PBM-5A, when a C-46 crew called that they were ditching after just taking off. I notified the tower that with the Amphibian I would try and help if possible.I was cleared around 2 other planes and took off. I spotted the C-46 still floating about 5 miles off shore. When I made a pass over it, I felt it was too dangerous to land nearby.

At the same time, a USAF SR-16 (Rescue Plane) came over and he agreed he wouldn't land. (Heavy swells and little wind) After circling the area I saw some smooth water beside a nearby island. I landed, taxied some distance to three crewmen in a life raft and they were taken aboard.

Now how to get airborne? After surveying the conditions, (swell and wind) down swell and down wind (slight) looked good. With deep swells being wide apart, by the time I reached the crest of the third swell I was airborne. All this very much to the co-pilots surprise (Dick Sample). We had the C-46 crew back on land at Itazuki probably less than an hour after their T.O. The procedure may have been unorthodox, but it worked.

While on that same tour in Japan I was caught in another oddity.My C.O. was in need of eight hours flight time so it was arranged. When the flight,in a PBY-5A, was ready for take off, the Exec. said that I should go along. I rode along for about 4+ hours when the assigned P.C. asked if I wished to take the left Pilot seat. The flight position was above the mountains of northern Japan.

Shortly after I took the P.C.'s seat, the R. H. Engine began to sputter. Since the flight engineer reported nothing to improve on it, I feathered the prop and headed for the ocean about 10 minutes away. At the same time as we reached the shore line, the C.O. said "let's land." My answer was "no way" if we want to get the plane and ourselves home. We were then close to 2 hours north of Yokuska. We got the USAF rescue plane to come north and escort us in.

The point I want to make is that at least 3 times the C.O. suggested that I land and I refused, making it to Yokosuka on the single engine safely. This was close to disobeying an order, but I felt my judgment was correct. Later he repeated the remark, "Glenn, I admire you. I'm your C.O., but that day you were my C.O." He was an ex-single engine pilot!

In 1946 - 1948, I did a tour in NATS (VR - 3) flying R5D's cross country non-stop. I was designated a P.C. by VR -3 without going through their required VR-Training Sylabus. Probably the greatest experience afforded to anyone for all weather flying.

I received no special awards for my aviation efforts. The co-pilot that I had in VP - 19, after WWII, applied to the Navy Dept. Awards section and received at least an Air Medal and a DFC. I felt when it came to flying I was always doing my job and accomplished the flights in pretty good fashion.

I did a tour in Service Test at NATC, Patuxent River, MD, from 1953 - 1956. I flew multi-engine, land and seaplanes going thru Acceptance Trials. Since many of the Test Pilot School Students had only CV-Plane Training and experience, I was assigned to give them check-out rides in various multi-engine aircraft. The School Director, John Glenn, and Scott Carpenter were names that flew certain planes with me.

I hope some visitors will some day read these few incidents of a Silver Eagle, who enjoyed flying Navy Airplanes!

Denver G. "Glenn" Sliger
LtCdr., USN, Retired
 
 



Subject: War stories
From: SignorelliL lt;Signorelli@dns.alma.it

A story comes from my father (who was 11 years old in 1944). He lived with his parents in a small town southwest of Turin (at the foot of Alps). On 1 July 1944 a mixed Wehrmacht-SS Polizei unit, apparently hunting partisans, occupied the town. For three days they went on the rampage, drinking themselves senseless, shooting people on the streets, and throwing hand grenades in houses at random.

The third day the worse happended. All the people trapped in the village (my father and his family included) was ordered outside the settlement, near the local graveyard, and men were ordered to dig huge pits. Then, soldiers placed several machine guns in front of lined people: panic ensued immediately. My grandmother kneeled in front of a soldier asking for mercy at least for the kids (my father was totally crazy for terror). The answer was "You italian traitors bastards - now you all die", followed by a big laughter.

More than an hour later (when most of the people was prepared to be slaughtered in minutes), a flare was seen in the sky. Soldier held people for some minute more, then they left'em to return to their burning homes. The reprisal had been stopped in the nick of time by the Bishop of Pinerolo (a nearby city), who's got rumor of what was happening and simply told the German commander he was going to have him hanged at the end of the war, if the massacre was carried on.

Now comes the "strange" part of this story. My father's house was one of the few spared by flames, but the front door was closed and keys where missing. Foolishly my grandma asked my father to go back to the graveyard to search for the keys (she was still really shocked). To save time, my father went through the burning village - until a hand stopped him. It was a German soldier: "You little kid - very dangerous to run here - all is burning - you go back home". He gave my father some food, a paternal smile and sent him back home.

My father had nightmares for years, but the worse thing was he had (later) the realization these soldiers weren't monster, they weren't hating the people they were ready to kill. They were normal, common, flawed people like us who had lost their inhibitions. My father insight is: the worst crime of Nazism was the CORRUPTION of otherwise decent people, to have got them the impression they were a superior race, with the right to kill or treat kindly "inferior" people at their will. Maybe, for twelve years Germans believed Paradise on Earth was a place where the infamous "Do What You Will" of Crowleyan memory
was reality...

Luca Signorelli

Turin (Italy)



From: "Mr. Lorie F. Allen" lt aydin001@pop.erols.com
Subject: A True Submarine War Story

My wife Jeanine McKenzie Allen is the daughter of Lloyd C. McKenzie who remains on Eternal Patrol after six war patrols on the U.S.S. Triton, SS-201 in the Pacific. She is a war orphan.

She offers the the following tribute to Captain George H. Whiting, U.S.N (ret.) along with her dad:

In 1941, Lloyd McKenzie, who was a veteran of the Asiatic Navy on U.S.S Stewart in China, from 1934, completed Submarine School at New London and was assigned--alone with then Lt. George Whiting--to a new class of U.S. Navy submarine at the Commissioning of the U.S.S. Triton, SS-201 at Portsmouth, NH. Lloyd McKenzie was a Torpedoman in the Forward Torpedo Room and George Whiting was the Torpedo and Gunnery Officer aboard Triton.

Recognition and a Salute to a Surviving U.S.S. Triton Shipmate

Captain George Whiting, U.S. Navy (ret.)
U.S.S. Triton, SS-201 and U.S.S. Grenadier, SS-210
 

Captain George H. Whiting was Lloyd McKenzie's immediate boss aboard U.S.S. Triton from its commissioning as a United States Ship of War through the third war patrol after the surprise attack on Pearl Harbor. George and Lloyd saw each other many times each day in the course of their duties.

There is a little known story about George Whiting from the Triton's third war patrol that provides some indication of how suberbly trained, bold, and accepting of responsibility our submariners are and were. Then, Lt. George Whiting was assigned the task of properly managing the entering of the myriad of technical details that lead to a correct firecontrol solution by the "Target Data Computer"--the TDC--when initiating a torpedo attack on the enemy. The TDC was located at the elbow of the Captain in the conning tower.

The TDC was an electro-mechanical contraption with a series of crank handles, dials and indicators which had to be accurately and properly positioned in order to develop a correct firing solution for setting of the torpedo gyro angle. It was George Whiting, during a Triton attack, who entered into the TDC a considerably faster forward speed for the Japanese submarine I-164 than that ordered by the Commanding Officer, Lt. Cdr. Charles Kirkpatrick. George had realized that the target's position was changing more rapidly than Captain "Kirk" understood; George's razor sharp training and experience instinctively told him that the target had to be proceeding at a faster speed than suspected by his Captain.

After firing the single precious remaining torpedo in the forward torpedo room, Captain "Kirk" demanded to know, "George! What target speed did you use?--I said 5 Knots! The torpedo seems to be running ahead of the target!" When George told him 14.5 Knots, Captain Kirk began to boil. He was mad, really mad. He was convinced that his only usable torpedo had been squandered. With some unrepeatable expletives, he said, "I told you she wasn't making more than 5 Knots!"

Just about that time, "WHAM!!", the best sound George Whiting ever heard. Captain Kirkpatrick grabbed the periscope and saw the stern of the I-164 blown a hundred feet into the air. As it turned out, the I-164 was making closer to 15 knots. "George!", he said, "Your were absolutely right!" They were off the coast of Kyushu, Japan, on the third war patrol. Lloyd McKenzie was one of two TM!s in the forward Torpedo Room; Martin L. Herstich was the other.

After that war patrol on Triton, George Whiting was transferred for duty to, a sister submarine, the U.S.S. Grenadier, SS-210, under Lt. Cdr. J.A. Fitzgerald. Grenadier was subsequently lost, off of the coast of the Malay Pennsulia, on April 22, 1943, due to catastrophic damage caused by Japanese aerial bombing five weeks after loss of the Triton. It was Grenadier's sixth war patrol. Lt. Whiting, the Executive Officer, and Grenadier's crew were imprisioned by the Japanese to be brutalized in captivity as Prisoners of War. Four died as captives due to savage Japanese mistreatment of the POWs. Survivors of the Grenadier were finally released from captivity in September, 1945, 29-months after loss of the Grenadier.

Captain Whiting when on to a distinguished Navy career; Admiral Kirkpatrick also had a distinguished Navy career ending his career as the Superintendent of the U.S. Naval Academy. Whenever Captain "Kirk" and George would see each other, Captain "Kirk" would always shake his head and say..."George, you were right!"

Martin Herstich and Lloyd McKenzie made three more war patrols on Triton having a direct hand the the sinking of 18 Japanese ships, including 2 Men of War, while damaging three other Jap ships. Triton was lost March 15, 1943 according to the history books.

The above is a true war story. Let me know what you think of it.

Regards,
Lorie F. Allen



Subject: On the Homefront

From: sanford ltsanford@indiana.edu

This is a story of my grandmother and the day she got a letter from one of her sons....she couldn't read.

One day, Grandma was alone in the house when the postman brought the mail. There was a letter from my Uncle Arthur, one of the youngest boys. He was in the Philippines, one of the places where the war was being fought the hardest. He was in the infantry and was right in the middle of the fighting.

Someone was usually around to read the mail to her, but she was the only one home that day. She tore open the envelope, with shaking fingers, and stared at the letter. There were all kinds of black lines through the writing. She had to read that letter! She looked at it and searched for words she knew. She struggled with it and prayed that she would be able to figure it out.  She wanted to read it so strongly that finally she managed to check it letter for letter and word for word to get through it. She pieced enough of
it together to know everything was okay. He was not hurt. She sighed with great relief, and then went into the bedroom exhausted and cried. She cried with relief, and with happiness too. She had read the letter all by herself.

Grandma never forgot that day--the day she received the black lined letter. She never did learn to read, either.  She told me that story many years later when I was about fifteen.

Sue Sanford

My grandmother was Sarah Elkins. She lived in Kingsford Heights, Indiana when she told me the story. I'm not sure where she lived when the boys were in the service. Valparaiso I think.


Subj: Comment: Nurse POWs in the Pacific
From: Lewisreeve@AOL.COM

The story of the nurses in the Pacific is very impressive.  The nurses were all in the Philippines on the day of the Japanese invasion.  Two Army nurses were at Camp Hay, about 200 miles north of Manila, in the path of the Japanese heading south.  They were both captured on Dec 27, 1941. MacArthur ordered 50 Army nurses (and one Navy nurse) to leave Manila for the Bataan peninsula where they established two
emergency hospitals for U.S. and Filipino forces.

On April 8, 1942, the 51 nurses on Bataan were evacuated to Corregidor as the Japanese were within several hundred yards of overrunning the hospitals. Some nurses didn't make the last Navy ship out of Bataan and crossed the 2-3 miles via small watercraft. They joined another 34 nurses already on Corregidor, who had been ordered there from Manila by MacArthur.

In late April, surrender seemed evident on Corregidor and the 85 nurses present were ordered to evacuate the island.  Twenty-one nurses were safely evacuated--including the one Navy nurse--to Australia via plane or submarine. Another plane with 10 nurses aboard crashed in Japan. These ten nurses joined the POWs at Santo Tomas. The remaining 54 nurses on Corregidor were captured by the Japanese but were reportedly treated with respect. They were also transported to Santo Tomas. The two nurses at Camp Hay were eventually sent to Santo Tomas also.

On Feb 3, 1945, 66 Army nurses were liberated at Santo Tomas. Eleven Navy nurses were taken prisoner in Jan 1942 and placed at Santo Tomas Internment Camp in Manila. They cared for 3,500 civilians there until they voluntarily moved to Los Banos in May 1943 to establish a new, albeit primitive hospital. They remained there until liberated on Feb 23, 1945, after 37 months internment.

Five more Navy nurses were taken prisoner on Guam when the Japanese invaded on Dec 10, 1941. They were sent to Zentsuji, Japan, on Jan 10, 1942, and were released in June 1942 as exchange prisoners.

A total of 82 Army and Navy nurses were POWs in the Pacific theater. (The numbers discussed are sometimes confusing because one woman was not in the military during the war but joined the Army upon liberation and sometimes is counted, sometimes not, as a POW).

Connie Reeves


* Noel J. Tominack (noel@umbc2.umbc.edu) | proud son of a WWII vet
* University of Maryland Baltimore County | Crpl. Ivan Louis Tominack
* All opinions are mine mine mine!| US 7th Army

Subject: Re: War Stories (was My father's role in the War)
From: marks84609@aol.com

When the Japanese bombed Pearl Harbor, my father was on a troopship out of San Francisco en route to the Phillipines with an Army Air Corps unit. Fortunately, the ship turned around and returned to port when notified of the attack. If it had proceeded, the ship would have been in time for the passengers to be caught up in the fall of the Phillipines. He was then sent up to Seattle and assigned to the Seattle Air Defense Command working in the communications center.

Any interesting story from that period was the Japanese seaplane, launched from a sub, which had based itself on a lake up in the mountains east of the city. On foggy days, it would nip out and fly low along the waterfront bank and make a turn past the Bremerton Navy Yard doing reconnaissance. He once saw the plane as it passed by the Frye Hotel where the air defense guys were operating from. They never got the interceptors up from Mchord Field in time to try and bag the plane. Then it stopped. No radar detects or visual sightings. They assumed it had either flown out to the coast and been picked up by a sub or had augered into the ground or a mountain somewhere. Several years later, he heard that the wreckage had been found on the side the mountain he had crashed into.

After the tour in Seattle, Dad was sent over to participate in the Phillipines, again with an Air Corps unit but functioning as an MP this time. They went in on the fourth wave. Didnt see any combat. After marking time there, it was off to Okinawa and that invasion.

When the A bombs were dropped, he was aboard ship again awaiting word for the invasion of Japan to begin. It didnt happen and he went with the occupation forces and assigned to Tachikawa Air Base. After a year, it was back to Seattle and up to Paine Field where he was in charge of radar detachment.
 
 



Subject: What my dad did...
From: GMon6612@aol.com

Recently a friend of ours sent me the following article from my dad's local newspaper (the "Pike County Herald" (?) (Mississippi), dated August 19, 1943.  My dad was a navigator with the 96th BG, 8th AF, Snetterton Heath, England. This is the text of a letter he sent to the paper in July '43.

Dear Mr. and Mrs. Lacy:

The first "Herald" I've received since arriving in England [in May '43] came in today. Need I say, it was welcomed with "open arms." It certainly did look good to me.

The "With our Service Men" column was the first thing I read. In it was a letter from ... an old class mate.... Strange, he must have been sent to the opposite corner of the globe.... He must be terribly bored and homesick, but "darnit" I'm homesick, too.  His social life is nonexistent while, in England, only an occasional "scrap" breaks into our enjoyment of the quite lanes and hedges (and London). So I consider myself very lucky.We have good quarters and food; the British are very nice to us; and it is not too long a ride to continental Europe.

The climate here is amazing -- I consider myself lucky about that, too -- Mother writes that you are having heat waves.We have had a British style heat wave here. Everybody had to pull off their jackets and run around in just woolen shirt and pants -- can you feature that though? Woolens in July! And comfortable too!

I've been to London several times and thouroughly enjoyed every trip.  Naturally, I made the familiar rounds: Breakfast at the "Dorchester"; noon at "St. Paul's"; tea......"Hyde Park"; sunset at "Westminster's" and blackout in "Picadilly". A 24 hour pass can click by pretty rapidly there. And my! How the pounds do fly! For one month the schedule is like this: First pass -- London. Second pass -- nearest town. Third pass -- a day in the country. Fourth pass -- a walk down the road a way. The pound situation is serious late in the month.

In spite of all the tales you have heard, the blackout isn't so dangerous, and neither are these raids, BUT the English bycicles are. The first thing I did over here was go for a bike ride, go too fast around a curve and meet another 'cycle, back peddled all over the place (these darn bikes have hand brakes), executed two quick snap rolls and landed on may face. After that I was convinced I had to learn first. Now you should see me. I still go around corners too fast, still meet people and can't stop, still snap roll over the handle bars, but I don't land on my face any more.  You can tell I'm enjoying myself, and that I like England.

Wish you were here (instead of me).

Yours,

Bill Jones
 

[Lt. William M. Jones, Navigator, 96th BG, 8th AF.  The 96th BG was the lead group on the August 17, 1943, mission to Regensburg. Col. C. Lemay flew in the lead airplane of the group, after ousting the Group CO, Col. A. Old. Lt. Jones was promoted to Group Navigator on Oct. 19, 1943, following the second Schweinfurt mission of Oct. 14th, in which the 96th BG led the 3rd Division.]
 
 



Subject: New War Story
From: Denver G. Sliger
FLYING "CATS" IN THE ALEUTIANS DURING WORLD WAR II
By Denver G. "Glenn" Sliger, USN, Retired
 

NOTE TO THE READER: The following profile was prepared by Glenn Sliger for the "Silver Eagles Association" prior to his death in February, 1996. If you knew Glenn, please contact his wife Agie at 8088 Mission Vista Drive, San Diego, CA  92120.
 

To: Silver Eagles Association
Pensacola, Fla.
From: Denver G. Sliger

This may not adhere to the word "Profile," but it is meant to serve for it. The events were high lights during my "Aviator" life. I received my wings as an AMM 1/c (AP) in February 1942. My next assignment was with VP - 61, then being formed at NAS Alameda. Prior to Flight Training, I had served in a Patrol Squadron (VP - 18). From that experience I decided that single engine aircraft were for me rather than multi-engine seaplanes. I could not see being a co-pilot for the long time that was the policy at that time. While in training at Pensacola I was selected to go to CV (aircraft carrier) training and with only one training flight to complete, Pensacola received instructions to stop sending enlisted students to CV training at Miami. This was because of Admiral King, boss of the Atlantic Fleet, who stated "No more white hats" as pilots in his fleet. Old timers know his reason.

My only P.C. in VP - 61 (for 18 months; Training and Operational) I would classify as non-aggressive, non-heroic, and non-informative. The first harrowing experience that I had went like this:

After the Japanese struck Midway Island in June 1942, all the available PBY's (Catalinas, or simply "CATS") were shuttled north from the West Coast to the Aleutians. About July, three crews from VP - 61 were ordered to Seattle to ferry PBY's to Kodiak Island.  All three crews luckily arrived intact at Kodiak (Seattle--Sitka--Kodiak). Our crew and one other one was then assigned to ferry two beat up PBY's back to Seattle. We left Kodiak for Sitka in a heavy rain storm with only minimum radio equipment, no radar, ADF, etc. The P.C. soon goes to sleep so I navigate out of the Kodiak Range into the Sitka Range Let at about 50 feet above water, also with the other plane on our wing. They could work CW radio, but not voice. With navigation being done by guessing, my attention was "ahead" and to any changes in sea conditions.

Knowing that we should be nearing the Sitka area, I saw ground swells appear, woke up the P.C. just as we saw surf. He grabs the controls, pulls up into the rain clouds, did a 180, let down outbound and when we regained visibility returned inbound. With everyone alert this time, we managed to see an island outline, veered around it and landed immediately.

How we missed the island the first time, who knows? We had no knowledge of the other plane or just how far we were from Sitka. We somehow established radio communication with Sitka during the night and they found us and towed us in. We eventually learned that the other plane avoided the islands, landed, and taxied onto the first sandy beach that was seen. Both planes eventually arrived at Seattle for overhaul.

That trip was my first lesson in always being super-alert if I wished to stay alive.

By early August 1942, VP - 61 flew north to Kodiak then Dutch Harbor with PBY's (just seaplane version).Within a week after arriving at Dutch Harbor, three crews including ours were sent to Atka Bay to run patrols westward. We refueled daily from a tender (converted 4 stack DD). The only islands supposedly occupied by the Japanese were Attu and Kiska.

On one of our early patrols we spotted a Jap float plane near Kiska. I don't believe we were ever seen. The USAAF (P-38's) were destroying them as fast as they were replaced!

With all the monotonous hours of flying patrols in the Aleutians during 1942-1943, I think our crew was involved in most of the reportable incidents. They follow:

On a clear day, west of Attu, we spotted two destroyers (Japanese) heading toward us. We were flying at about 100' above the sea. When they spotted us, they did a 180o turn to the west. We reported their position and climbed to altitude to drop four 500 lb Army Air Corps provided bombs (nose fused).  They had then been on wing racks for probably 30 salt water take off and landings. After we dropped them toward the DD's, we never saw an explosion, splash, or anything. After that patrol we returned to Dutch Harbor for bomb replacement. The ordnance people listened to our story and were convinced that I had not armed the bombs. I showed them the racks, and when convinced that the right procedure had been followed, they began to investigate.

They found that all bombs which had been on the racks for a number of salt water operations were so corroded at the nose fuses, none would work properly. Hence, our armament was changed to Navy type depth charges. After that, our crew made periodic drops of them and found a high failure rate.

During probably the last large USAAF strike on Kiska, a B-25 crew ditched in Kiska Harbor and we rescued them in their life rafts before the cold water got them. We returned them to Amchitka Base safely.

We covered (ASW) the U.S. Task Force enroute to the Attu landing for three days prior. Then we did ASW patrol around the anchored ships during the landing. Near the end of the first day on station (P.C. asleep) I am guiding the aircraft around the outer ships and beyond when I spot some peculiar spray off the waves. As I crossed it I looked back or to the left and could see a water path. Now the P.C. is awake and we follow the path to its end and drop flares. By then we were sure it was a torpedo path heading for the control ship. It missed by a mile!

We called the DD's and they made several drops while we stayed there -- no results. When we came on station the next morning they reported destroying a 2-man submarine. I saw in Navy Publications, later, where each DD Skipper received awards for their effort. (My alertness started it!)

Battle of the Komandorski's -- This was a surface engagement between a small U.S. Task Force and a Japanese Force which was followed by two heavily loaded transports. When they broke off, the U.S. Force headed East, one ship leaking fuel.

Our crew had just taken off that morning when we received word to proceed to the position of the engagement.It appeared to be about 5 hours away. During the trip we came across our own Task Force, communicated with them and then followed their oil slick westward. When it ended we did a standard search and came across the 2 heavily loaded transports. We sent position reports for about 2 hours and headed for home base. We landed after dark on a USAAF Fighter Strip at Amchitka. (25 Gal. in each tank!)

One incident funny to me and another one not so funny are below:

After getting PBY-Amphibians and our crew had adapted to Aleutian flying pretty good, we were sent into Adak one morning. The weather was low visibility due to snow squalls. We succeeded to get in the Bay area "Bush Pilot Style" up over a sand dune and landed on the Marston Matting. After we landed, we learned that a whole squadron was "grounded because of weather." One had to laugh at their hustle to get airborne after we came in.

The other incident was after our squadron was relieved by PV-l's. Our crew drew the hangar queen to fly home. Wouldn't you know, after about an hour in the air we had an engine quit. Practically a full load of fuel plus 13 people. We got the plane onto the rough water, but before we got in to the Amelia Island coast it sank. Three days later we were picked up by another PBY.

In 1944, I went to the Pacific in a PBM Squadron (PBM-3D) (VP - 19). The most effort during that tour was our open sea operation during the landing at Iwo Jima. We patrolled toward Japan plotting their line of picket boats who reported B-29 runs toward Tokyo. All "take-offs" were JATO assisted. We had everything but normal seaplane conditions. In the early 50's, I did a tour in Japan. On one trip scheduled from Itazuki AFB, I was in line for T.O. in a PBM-5A, when a C-46 crew called that they were ditching after just taking off. I notified the tower that with the Amphibian I would try and help if possible.I was cleared around 2 other planes and took off. I spotted the C-46 still floating about 5 miles off shore. When I made a pass over it, I felt it was too dangerous to land nearby.

At the same time, a USAF SR-16 (Rescue Plane) came over and he agreed he wouldn't land. (Heavy swells and little wind) After circling the area I saw some smooth water beside a nearby island. I landed, taxied some distance to three crewmen in a life raft and they were taken aboard.

Now how to get airborne? After surveying the conditions, (swell and wind) down swell and down wind (slight) looked good. With deep swells being wide apart, by the time I reached the crest of the third swell I was airborne. All this very much to the co-pilots surprise (Dick Sample). We had the C-46 crew back on land at Itazuki probably less than an hour after their T.O. The procedure may have been unorthodox, but it worked.

While on that same tour in Japan I was caught in another oddity.My C.O. was in need of eight hours flight time so it was arranged. When the flight,in a PBY-5A, was ready for take off, the Exec. said that I should go along. I rode along for about 4+ hours when the assigned P.C. asked if I wished to take the left Pilot seat. The flight position was above the mountains of northern Japan.

Shortly after I took the P.C.'s seat, the R. H. Engine began to sputter. Since the flight engineer reported nothing to improve on it, I feathered the prop and headed for the ocean about 10 minutes away. At the same time as we reached the shore line, the C.O. said "let's land." My answer was "no way" if we want to get the plane and ourselves home. We were then close to 2 hours north of Yokuska. We got the USAF rescue plane to come north and escort us in.

The point I want to make is that at least 3 times the C.O. suggested that I land and I refused, making it to Yokosuka on the single engine safely. This was close to disobeying an order, but I felt my judgment was correct. Later he repeated the remark, "Glenn, I admire you. I'm your C.O., but that day you were my C.O." He was an ex-single engine pilot!

In 1946 - 1948, I did a tour in NATS (VR - 3) flying R5D's cross country non-stop. I was designated a P.C. by VR -3 without going through their required VR-Training Sylabus. Probably the greatest experience afforded to anyone for all weather flying.

I received no special awards for my aviation efforts. The co-pilot that I had in VP - 19, after WWII, applied to the Navy Dept. Awards section and received at least an Air Medal and a DFC. I felt when it came to flying I was always doing my job and accomplished the flights in pretty good fashion.

I did a tour in Service Test at NATC, Patuxent River, MD, from 1953 - 1956. I flew multi-engine, land and seaplanes going thru Acceptance Trials. Since many of the Test Pilot School Students had only CV-Plane Training and experience, I was assigned to give them check-out rides in various multi-engine aircraft. The School Director, John Glenn, and Scott Carpenter were names that flew certain planes with me.

I hope some visitors will some day read these few incidents of a Silver Eagle, who enjoyed flying Navy Airplanes!

Denver G. "Glenn" Sliger
LtCdr., USN, Retired
 
 



Subject: War stories
From: SignorelliL lt;Signorelli@dns.alma.it

A story comes from my father (who was 11 years old in 1944). He lived with his parents in a small town southwest of Turin (at the foot of Alps). On 1 July 1944 a mixed Wehrmacht-SS Polizei unit, apparently hunting partisans, occupied the town. For three days they went on the rampage, drinking themselves senseless, shooting people on the streets, and throwing hand grenades in houses at random.

The third day the worse happended. All the people trapped in the village (my father and his family included) was ordered outside the settlement, near the local graveyard, and men were ordered to dig huge pits. Then, soldiers placed several machine guns in front of lined people: panic ensued immediately. My grandmother kneeled in front of a soldier asking for mercy at least for the kids (my father was totally crazy for terror). The answer was "You italian traitors bastards - now you all die", followed by a big laughter.

More than an hour later (when most of the people was prepared to be slaughtered in minutes), a flare was seen in the sky. Soldier held people for some minute more, then they left'em to return to their burning homes. The reprisal had been stopped in the nick of time by the Bishop of Pinerolo (a nearby city), who's got rumor of what was happening and simply told the German commander he was going to have him hanged at the end of the war, if the massacre was carried on.

Now comes the "strange" part of this story. My father's house was one of the few spared by flames, but the front door was closed and keys where missing. Foolishly my grandma asked my father to go back to the graveyard to search for the keys (she was still really shocked). To save time, my father went through the burning village - until a hand stopped him. It was a German soldier: "You little kid - very dangerous to run here - all is burning - you go back home". He gave my father some food, a paternal smile and sent him back home.

My father had nightmares for years, but the worse thing was he had (later) the realization these soldiers weren't monster, they weren't hating the people they were ready to kill. They were normal, common, flawed people like us who had lost their inhibitions. My father insight is: the worst crime of Nazism was the CORRUPTION of otherwise decent people, to have got them the impression they were a superior race, with the right to kill or treat kindly "inferior" people at their will. Maybe, for twelve years Germans believed Paradise on Earth was a place where the infamous "Do What You Will" of Crowleyan memory
was reality...

Luca Signorelli

Turin (Italy)



From: "Mr. Lorie F. Allen" lt aydin001@pop.erols.com
Subject: A True Submarine War Story

My wife Jeanine McKenzie Allen is the daughter of Lloyd C. McKenzie who remains on Eternal Patrol after six war patrols on the U.S.S. Triton, SS-201 in the Pacific. She is a war orphan.

She offers the the following tribute to Captain George H. Whiting, U.S.N (ret.) along with her dad:

In 1941, Lloyd McKenzie, who was a veteran of the Asiatic Navy on U.S.S Stewart in China, from 1934, completed Submarine School at New London and was assigned--alone with then Lt. George Whiting--to a new class of U.S. Navy submarine at the Commissioning of the U.S.S. Triton, SS-201 at Portsmouth, NH. Lloyd McKenzie was a Torpedoman in the Forward Torpedo Room and George Whiting was the Torpedo and Gunnery Officer aboard Triton.

Recognition and a Salute to a Surviving U.S.S. Triton Shipmate

Captain George Whiting, U.S. Navy (ret.)
U.S.S. Triton, SS-201 and U.S.S. Grenadier, SS-210
 

Captain George H. Whiting was Lloyd McKenzie's immediate boss aboard U.S.S. Triton from its commissioning as a United States Ship of War through the third war patrol after the surprise attack on Pearl Harbor. George and Lloyd saw each other many times each day in the course of their duties.

There is a little known story about George Whiting from the Triton's third war patrol that provides some indication of how suberbly trained, bold, and accepting of responsibility our submariners are and were. Then, Lt. George Whiting was assigned the task of properly managing the entering of the myriad of technical details that lead to a correct firecontrol solution by the "Target Data Computer"--the TDC--when initiating a torpedo attack on the enemy. The TDC was located at the elbow of the Captain in the conning tower.

The TDC was an electro-mechanical contraption with a series of crank handles, dials and indicators which had to be accurately and properly positioned in order to develop a correct firing solution for setting of the torpedo gyro angle. It was George Whiting, during a Triton attack, who entered into the TDC a considerably faster forward speed for the Japanese submarine I-164 than that ordered by the Commanding Officer, Lt. Cdr. Charles Kirkpatrick. George had realized that the target's position was changing more rapidly than Captain "Kirk" understood; George's razor sharp training and experience instinctively told him that the target had to be proceeding at a faster speed than suspected by his Captain.

After firing the single precious remaining torpedo in the forward torpedo room, Captain "Kirk" demanded to know, "George! What target speed did you use?--I said 5 Knots! The torpedo seems to be running ahead of the target!" When George told him 14.5 Knots, Captain Kirk began to boil. He was mad, really mad. He was convinced that his only usable torpedo had been squandered. With some unrepeatable expletives, he said, "I told you she wasn't making more than 5 Knots!"

Just about that time, "WHAM!!", the best sound George Whiting ever heard. Captain Kirkpatrick grabbed the periscope and saw the stern of the I-164 blown a hundred feet into the air. As it turned out, the I-164 was making closer to 15 knots. "George!", he said, "Your were absolutely right!" They were off the coast of Kyushu, Japan, on the third war patrol. Lloyd McKenzie was one of two TM!s in the forward Torpedo Room; Martin L. Herstich was the other.

After that war patrol on Triton, George Whiting was transferred for duty to, a sister submarine, the U.S.S. Grenadier, SS-210, under Lt. Cdr. J.A. Fitzgerald. Grenadier was subsequently lost, off of the coast of the Malay Pennsulia, on April 22, 1943, due to catastrophic damage caused by Japanese aerial bombing five weeks after loss of the Triton. It was Grenadier's sixth war patrol. Lt. Whiting, the Executive Officer, and Grenadier's crew were imprisioned by the Japanese to be brutalized in captivity as Prisoners of War. Four died as captives due to savage Japanese mistreatment of the POWs. Survivors of the Grenadier were finally released from captivity in September, 1945, 29-months after loss of the Grenadier.

Captain Whiting when on to a distinguished Navy career; Admiral Kirkpatrick also had a distinguished Navy career ending his career as the Superintendent of the U.S. Naval Academy. Whenever Captain "Kirk" and George would see each other, Captain "Kirk" would always shake his head and say..."George, you were right!"

Martin Herstich and Lloyd McKenzie made three more war patrols on Triton having a direct hand the the sinking of 18 Japanese ships, including 2 Men of War, while damaging three other Jap ships. Triton was lost March 15, 1943 according to the history books.

The above is a true war story. Let me know what you think of it.

Regards,
Lorie F. Allen



Subject: On the Homefront

From: sanford ltsanford@indiana.edu

This is a story of my grandmother and the day she got a letter from one of her sons....she couldn't read.

One day, Grandma was alone in the house when the postman brought the mail. There was a letter from my Uncle Arthur, one of the youngest boys. He was in the Philippines, one of the places where the war was being fought the hardest. He was in the infantry and was right in the middle of the fighting.

Someone was usually around to read the mail to her, but she was the only one home that day. She tore open the envelope, with shaking fingers, and stared at the letter. There were all kinds of black lines through the writing. She had to read that letter! She looked at it and searched for words she knew. She struggled with it and prayed that she would be able to figure it out.  She wanted to read it so strongly that finally she managed to check it letter for letter and word for word to get through it. She pieced enough of
it together to know everything was okay. He was not hurt. She sighed with great relief, and then went into the bedroom exhausted and cried. She cried with relief, and with happiness too. She had read the letter all by herself.

Grandma never forgot that day--the day she received the black lined letter. She never did learn to read, either.  She told me that story many years later when I was about fifteen.

Sue Sanford

My grandmother was Sarah Elkins. She lived in Kingsford Heights, Indiana when she told me the story. I'm not sure where she lived when the boys were in the service. Valparaiso I think.


Subj: Comment: Nurse POWs in the Pacific
From: Lewisreeve@AOL.COM

The story of the nurses in the Pacific is very impressive.  The nurses were all in the Philippines on the day of the Japanese invasion.  Two Army nurses were at Camp Hay, about 200 miles north of Manila, in the path of the Japanese heading south.  They were both captured on Dec 27, 1941. MacArthur ordered 50 Army nurses (and one Navy nurse) to leave Manila for the Bataan peninsula where they established two
emergency hospitals for U.S. and Filipino forces.

On April 8, 1942, the 51 nurses on Bataan were evacuated to Corregidor as the Japanese were within several hundred yards of overrunning the hospitals. Some nurses didn't make the last Navy ship out of Bataan and crossed the 2-3 miles via small watercraft. They joined another 34 nurses already on Corregidor, who had been ordered there from Manila by MacArthur.

In late April, surrender seemed evident on Corregidor and the 85 nurses present were ordered to evacuate the island.  Twenty-one nurses were safely evacuated--including the one Navy nurse--to Australia via plane or submarine. Another plane with 10 nurses aboard crashed in Japan. These ten nurses joined the POWs at Santo Tomas. The remaining 54 nurses on Corregidor were captured by the Japanese but were reportedly treated with respect. They were also transported to Santo Tomas. The two nurses at Camp Hay were eventually sent to Santo Tomas also.

On Feb 3, 1945, 66 Army nurses were liberated at Santo Tomas. Eleven Navy nurses were taken prisoner in Jan 1942 and placed at Santo Tomas Internment Camp in Manila. They cared for 3,500 civilians there until they voluntarily moved to Los Banos in May 1943 to establish a new, albeit primitive hospital. They remained there until liberated on Feb 23, 1945, after 37 months internment.

Five more Navy nurses were taken prisoner on Guam when the Japanese invaded on Dec 10, 1941. They were sent to Zentsuji, Japan, on Jan 10, 1942, and were released in June 1942 as exchange prisoners.

A total of 82 Army and Navy nurses were POWs in the Pacific theater. (The numbers discussed are sometimes confusing because one woman was not in the military during the war but joined the Army upon liberation and sometimes is counted, sometimes not, as a POW).

Connie Reeves