Monday, August 16, 2010

65th Anniversary of the Iwo Jima Survivors in Connecticut.

On Sunday I had the pleasure of attending the 65Th Anniversary Dinner of the Iwo Jima Survivors. Steve Jerry and I drove down and got in early. I quickly noticed several Marines wearing dress blues and one in particular had the 4th MARDIV patch on his shoulder. I pointed it out to Jerry. Jerry went over and spoke to his fellow Marine and found out he was in the 14 Marines Arty. An artillery unit based across the street from Jerry in Hawaii.

At the table we sat with two other 4th MARDIV marines and a Navy Flight nurse. She left early as her husband a member of the 1st MARDIV is in failing health.

I was struck by the amount of history in the room. It was humbling. Had we known in advance more Sherlock family members could have attended. Many family members of the survivors were in attendance.

I sat next to Joe Woods. He asked who Jerry was and what unit. 1st JASCO 3BN, 25Th Marines. He gave me a look and asked me to repeat the unit. I did and he said that was my unit.

" Hey Jerry this guy was in your unit." Jerry slid in after the main course and they compared notes. I spoke to Ginny Woods Joe's wife. She told me that Joe's WW2 experiences are highlighted in a new book called "Pacific War Stories" by Gerald Meehl and Rex Smith.

A funny note. Joe told me he was alittle hard of hearing due to the war. I chuckled and agreed anyone who has been exposed to loud noise in close combat is lacking in the hearing department. " What did you say!" Inside joke for the hearing impaired. I don't expect the rest of you to understand.

The undercurrent was that these folks are all very humble. The majority of attendees who spoke generally agreed they missed their friends who didn't make it back. A good many of them are trapped in their thoughts and prayers at Iwo late at night.

It was very emotional. A roller coaster ride of funny and some brutally honest insight to Iwo.

Great time watch, for the pictures coming soon.

"The Marine Corps has been called the elite of the country by the New York Times.

I think it is the elite of the world."

Adm William Halsey, United States Navy

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