Thursday, May 22, 2014

Sid Phillips on his reunion with Eugene Sledge on Pavuvu and the conditions there

Sid Phillips (author of You'll Be Sor-ree!: A Guadalcanal Marine Remembers the Pacific War and major character in the HBO mini-series The Pacific) recalls seeing his good friend from Mobile, Alabama after being separated for months.  Sledge had just arrived in the Pacific and Phillips had fought at Guadalcanal and Cape Gloucester and was about to go home.  He also mentions, towards the end of the clip, the terrible conditions the Marines had to put up with on Pavuvu.

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

May 20, 1944 - Pavuvu

May 20 marks the day that Daddy arrived on Pavuvu, the largest of the Russell Islands located northwest of Guadalcanal.  The 1st Marine Division (which included the 12th Defense Battalion) had been sent there for encampment, training and R&R prior to their next engagement (which turned out to be the Battle of Peleliu.)

Pavuvu was intended to be a rest area for the 1st MarDiv, to recover from the bitter jungle warfare of Cape Gloucester, and previously, Guadalcanal.  It turned out to be nothing of the sort.

Thursday, May 1, 2014

May 1, 1944 - Letter From Cape Gloucester

This was the last letter from Cape Gloucester.  According to his date book, Daddy arrived on Pavuvu May 20, 1944.

The 1st Marine Division departed in two echelons on 6 April and 4 May. Left behind was the 12th Defense Battalion, which continued to provide antiaircraft defense for the Cape Gloucester airfields until relieved by an Army unit late in May. Cape Gloucester : The Green Inferno by Bernard C. Nalty