Skip to comments.Researchers: WWII Marines entombed on atoll
Posted on 11/26/2008 7:08:54 PM PST by Dubya
Expedition could lead to largest identification of war dead in U.S. history
(Excerpt) Read more at msnbc.msn.com ...
Jim Johnson's father Clayton William Johnson, left, next to his uncle James Bernard Johnson. James Bernard Johnson was aged 17 when he was killed in the Tarawa Atoll during World War II. He was buried in a mass grave on the atoll.
I hope the US military bring our fallen heroes home. Isn’t that what the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier is all about. Whatever happened to the motto “don’t leave a soldier behind?”
High-tech legwork IDs lost Marines
A private group using technology and old records has found the remains of 139 Marines killed during the World War II Battle of Tarawa. At least 23 of the Marines came from Pennsylvania, and at least seven from Allegheny County, according to Mark Noah, spokesman for History Flight of Marathon, Fla. Although verification will depend upon the U.S. government's exhuming and identifying the remains at its forensics lab in Hawaii, Noah said Monday his organization is confident it has identified the people buried in eight mass graves by using a combination of Marine burial maps, ground-penetrating radar and interviews with the island's residents.
It seems to have fell by the way side.
Thanks for the info,
It seems to me they are home. They paid for that ground. I say let 'em keep it.
Semper Fi, bros.
It was war. The fighting out there in the Pacific was nearly sub-human. The Japanese treated us like rats, and we treated them the same.
I could see how in the fog of the war, especially on that bloody island, how men could be buried in a large group during the battle, and the people who were responsible for it all get killed, and the grave is lost.
With many men lost in the surf or in the ferocity of the battle, many literally blown off the face of the earth in one fell swoop with no remains left behind by a shell, I can also see the number of missing going up by 137 without anyone realizing it.
When I see one of those Marines or Soldiers from those campaigns, I make sure I say a humble and heartfelt thank you to them.
Yes. Thanks for your service. From a sailor to you...Thanks. I have a lot of respect for you guys.
Scratchin my head about why a mass grave. Has to be a good reason.
She died in October of 1968 at the age of 86 or so.
I, 12 years old almost 13, was sent that morning off with the neighbor lady so that my mother could take care of things and buy a dark dress for the funeral.
I remember spending a good part of the day, must have been a Saturday, at the town library. I brought home two books both of which I read. One, by local newspaper writer Paul Benzaquin was called Holocaust and was about the terrible nightclub fire in Boston back in 1941 that killed 400+ people. The other book was a history of the battle of Tarawa in the Pacific.
When I remember my grandmother's passing I always think about the Boston nightclub fire and about the Marines fighting at Tarawa.
We've left our dead all over this planet:
does the expression "Flanders Fields" mean anything to you?:
And there's Normandy, where over 9,000 Americans sleep:
My dad was at Tarawa. The atoll is barely large enough for an airstrip. Dead marines and Japanese were everywhere and when thousands of corpses are lying out in the tropical sun, a health crisis can start real fast.
I'm speculating now but the graves registration people may have done their jobs and moved on but shortly thereafter, marked graves had to be moved to accomodate work on the airfield.
A war is not over until all return home.
I remember visiting the U.S. cemetery at Belleau Wood about 15 years ago with my late father-in-law who spent the later part of WWII stationed there at Chateau-Thierry.
The place looked gorgeous. It was about a week or 10 days before Memorial Day and the cemetery and neighboring battlefield was full of workers making it look beautiful.
Everything looked perfect and the care that was being taken left a tremendous impression on me.
These military cemeteries in France are considered sovereign U.S. turf, but are maintained by Frenchmen. They really do a gorgeous job and it shows.
I've never since felt comfortable piling on with those beating up on the French for one thing or another after that trip of mine to Chateau-Thierry in 1990. The French really have done an outstanding job honoring U.S. war dead for over 60 years.
If they could move the equipment in to build the airfields, they had to be able to get back to the ships, but the ships probably wouldn't have been able to accommodate the dead either. So no place to go with them except in the ground.
Mass graves (I think the article said they identified 8 grave) makes sense.
That battle was fought in June of 1864 and was a terrible bloodbath.
Union officers, including an ancestor of mine, got headstones which relatives could visit and make believe marked their graves.
889 other Union soldiers were buried in mass graves within the boundaries of the tiny Cold Harbor Cemetery.
“And there’s Normandy, where over 9,000 Americans sleep..”
While I was in the Navy, I went to the American Cemetery in Manila - it looks just like the one at Normandy. Like being in a church. Unforgettable.
I consider it no sacrifice to die for my country. In my mind, we came here to thank God that men like these have lived rather than to regret that they have died.
General George S. Patton
Hundreds of bodies were in the water, some for days. As tanks and other vehicles hit the beach and moved inland they unavoidably were driven over the bodies of dead marines. Nightmare stuff for the tankers.
Could be DNA related.
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I would like to wish everyone a Happy Thanksgiving. My family still hasn’t allowed me to tell what what it is I’m thankful for....
so many things.
I haven’t posted in days, so I’m a bit belated. You all are a part of the list I’m not allowed to utter because they know I will go on and on and on and on and on.
Freema, you don’t need to make sense. It’s not an exclusive club, LOL. If you need to tell me something exclusive, you can be assured that I’ll promptly forget it in some manner. Dads do that, more often than not, especially this one! No kidding.
Meanwhile, things do go on and on and on...
It’s USMCobra’s birthday, btw...
I agree. They paid and kept it, let them rest there. Which is why I am so glad they are getting ALL of our people that we can find OUT of Vietnam. We paid the price, but weren’t allowed to keep it. So why would we want to leave anyone behind???
Happy Thanksgiving Day belated. And have a great day, I’m off to work shortly.
Well, thank goodness I don’t need to make sense. It’s like the phone commercial. I keep saying, “Can I tell you now?” and they yell “NO!” : )
Lt. Colonel Hal Moore: I can’t promise you that I will bring you all home alive. But this I swear, before you and before Almighty God, that when we go into battle, I will be the first to set foot on the field, and I will be the last to step off, and I will leave no one behind. Dead or alive, we will all come home together. So help me, God.