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View Full Version : Are you or do you know a WWII veteran?



Lyra Jean
02-23-2009, 11:32 AM
I'm writing a paper for a history class about the Aleutian Island battlefront during WWII.

Do you know anyone or are you a veteran who fought that campaign during WWII 1942-1943? If you are I would greatly love to hear about your experience for my paper. I'm looking for American, Canadian, or Japanese experiences. Especially Japanese.

I greatly appreciate this. If you can answer before March 10th that would be awesome but after March 10th is great too. I would just add into my final draft. (March 10th my rough draft due.)

Thank you much.

Tsu Dho Nimh
02-25-2009, 05:33 AM
Any of the veterans of WWII are into their 80s by now (2009-1942 = 67 ... and add the usual age of enlistment). My dad's younger brother, now deceased, was in the Aleutians, and was one of the supposedly safe "rear echelon" troops who were surprised by a banzai charge at the last of the Battle of Attu. His memory of the experience was that it was freezing boredom interspersed with moments of terror. The weather was nasty, the gear was inadequate, they didn't have a good supply chain, frostbite in May was common, and the Japanese had the good uphill positions (but they were cut off from their supply lines, and starving as well as freezing).

There were only 20 or so Japanese survivors. If they didn't die in the battle, they committed suicide.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Battle_of_Attu

I suggest you get the books mentioned in the Wikipedia articles and follow the links - they would have memoirs.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Paul_Nobuo_Tatsuguchi (Japanese surgeon) Few of the common troops were literate enough to write memoirs, but this man did, and it was translated into English.

http://www.orneveien.org/adak/contributors/wickersham/index.htm has some great pictures of the place. It's drop-dead gorgeous,

http://images.google.com/hosted/life
http://images.google.com/images?q=Aleutian+Islands+source:life

Lyra Jean
02-25-2009, 06:44 AM
I am looking at primary sources (mostly newspaper articles) and secondary sources such as books. I thought it would be neat if I could possibly get some eye witness accounts. I knew my chances would be slim though.

My grandfather also was stationed in the Aleutians. At least I was led to believe that anyway which is why I am writing about it. I will check out those sources you posted.

Thanks for responding.

Barb D
02-25-2009, 07:57 AM
My 96yo grandfather was in WWII. He had a pregnant wife (now my 94yo grandmother) and 5 children at home. If you send me your questions I'd be happy to ask him. On video, even. My mom has been recording a lot of his stories for posterity.

Linda Adams
02-26-2009, 03:26 PM
Have you checked at the bookstore book biographies/autobiographies about the war? One famous one that comes to mind is Baa Baa Black Sheep by Pappy Boyington, but there are many, many books out on the subject.

Also try checking with your local Veterans of Foreign Wars. When I checked on joining them after Desert Storm, they had a lot of WWII vets, but not much after. You may be able to find someone locally who would like to talk.

Tsu Dho Nimh
02-27-2009, 01:58 AM
My grandfather also was stationed in the Aleutians. At least I was led to believe that anyway which is why I am writing about it. I will check out those sources you posted.

You can get his service record for family history purposes. Do you want it?

WriteKnight
02-27-2009, 08:37 AM
There was recently a documentary on the HIstory Channel, or the War Channel, or the Military HIstory Channel or some such - all about the Aleutian Island Campaign.

Google the Aleutian Island Campaign, and 'documentary' - you might find some good stuff.


My father is a WW2 Vet (He's 84) - and my Grandfather was a ww1 vet.

Lyra Jean
02-27-2009, 09:16 AM
You can get his service record for family history purposes. Do you want it?

How do I do that? Unfortunately I cannot ask my grandfather about his experiences he died in the early 90's RIP.

Lyra Jean
02-27-2009, 09:17 AM
My 96yo grandfather was in WWII. He had a pregnant wife (now my 94yo grandmother) and 5 children at home. If you send me your questions I'd be happy to ask him. On video, even. My mom has been recording a lot of his stories for posterity.

That'll be great. I'll get some questions to you soon. Thanks alot.

Lyra Jean
02-27-2009, 09:20 AM
There was recently a documentary on the HIstory Channel, or the War Channel, or the Military HIstory Channel or some such - all about the Aleutian Island Campaign.

Google the Aleutian Island Campaign, and 'documentary' - you might find some good stuff.


My father is a WW2 Vet (He's 84) - and my Grandfather was a ww1 vet.

Thanks for the info. I will definitely google it. I knew a gentleman who fought in the Spanish American, War WWI, and WWII. He and his wife were a very sweet couple. I worked at a retirement home in high school and served them dinner in the restaurant.