Tarawa Betio Gilbert Islands USMC WWII 2nd Marine Division

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Author Topic: Few pics ive never seen..  (Read 46 times)

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Kim Harrison

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Few pics ive never seen..
« on: May 19, 2020, 04:00:19 am »
Hi All
Well hope everybody's been ok. Our numbers here have fallen, since the move here, i've noticed. Alot of our 2nd Div Marine, who were fathers, grandfathers and fox hole buddies, have passed, over last few years. But we who remain must continue their story for them.
Many are returning home, finally.
We all have helped discover so much for family members over the years. And the honor to know and talk to the Marine Vet. Ed Bale, tuff as they come. The man was as powerfull as a tank lol, when talking to him. Then once, i crawled all over the famous tank on Betio., taking close to 30 shots, was low tide so stood on it, around it every angle, then sent them to emailed to him, with note, " taken 10min ogo, Sempa Fi Mac ". His response, was a soft heartfelt thanks. Tough as a Tank, with a core of gold.
Anyhooo, stumbled across this U.S Naval site, with pic of Tarawa, mixed in with Saipan. Trust me looked through whole lot, and they very mixed up lol. But hey, im wanting to know more about the 2nd Div at Saipan. I regret not asking more of Norman, or Mr Bale and more about Saipan. More about LVTs 2nd Div at Saipan, ( hint hint Al lol ).


For you Al a pic from above link, but got a feeling you seen this before

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Re: Few pics ive never seen..
« Reply #1 on: May 20, 2020, 10:34:35 pm »
Hello Kim,
These are great photos, LVT #41 was Don Crain's LVT. He writes about it in an article I once saw. This photo is from the salvage area off of Red-2, photo were taken from the beach looking inot the lagoon.  The location is west of Shoups CP near the long pier.
I will start looking into the Saipan campaign. 


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Re: Few pics ive never seen..
« Reply #2 on: May 22, 2020, 12:57:13 pm »
Agree with Al. Thanks for the link. I've barely touched upon Saipan or Guadalcanal. Can't seem to give up trying to obtain more from Tarawa yet. It is getting more difficult though. Here is a link to Getty Images on Saipan to a number of photos. You may find something there if you haven't already visited it. There is one picture on the beach with LVTs that I know to be a group of E-2-2-2 Marines. A Marine from Wisconsin, Mark Peterik, identified himself in it.


Kim Harrison

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Re: Few pics ive never seen..
« Reply #3 on: May 22, 2020, 05:03:47 pm »
Wow Amazing Saipan pics. Yes totally agree, my life revolves around Betio, lol. With all the study of 2nd Div in New Zealand and Betio, at times i forget the other areas the Division were.
Did have copy of Robert Sherrods Onto Westward ( which had bits of 2nd Div ). Donated my copy to Auckland University New Zealand. Due to very poor pacific war collection for students, which is nuts because the Japs were on our door step.

E-2-2-2 Marines went through so much on Betio, And to do it all over again, wow. Hope Tarawa vets had few tricks up there sleeve.

Do have copy of Oba: The Last Samurai, which always gives me mixed thoughts every time i read it. Much like growing up on Betio, and meeting a respected village elder, who was Shibasaki house boy. He told a group of us kids, about going for a drive with the commander and driver in big black car. His first time in car, untill 1956. A week before the Marines arrived, Shibasaki Ordered him to leave Betio, go to his family village up the Atoll. He cryed and was upset. Shibasaki had only shown caring for natives he had contact with. Not once did i ever hear he was a mean Japanese.
What happened to the film rolls captured, ive seen the common ones, but always see something newish. All photos pre invasion film, not some but all.

Out of All Pacific battles, TOTW seems only one to dig and dig and dig. We need to share all info, pics  etc into a data base which i guess TOTW is lol. But do you know what i mean, ive held onto pics before because i was only person with it. But decided it better to help the vets familys and friends. A it does help, one pic was used in Tanks on Tarawa, thats awesome, helps the tankers familys see. So as most of you know from over the years, i refuse to with hold info or pic, because the men that lived and died in battle should not be held in secret, i believe.

What happened to the Betio, POW interviews.?
Where are the rolls of pre invasion film found after the battle ? ( we have all seen some, but rest? )

Betio how i remember it 1970s


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Link to Tarawa on the Web