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Guadalcanal's 75th

Battle of Savo Island, Part I

Last Monday was the 75th anniversary of the initial US landings on the islands of Guadalcanal, Tulagu, Gavutu and Tanambogo in the Solomon Islands. Under cloud cover on the morning of 7 August 1942, the invasion fleet had approached from the Southwest; units included 22 transports, two carrier groups centered around USS Saratoga (CV-3) and USS Wasp (CV-7), the escorting Australian cruisers HMAS Canberra and Australia, four US heavy cruisers, and a variety of smaller warships. USS Quincy (CA-39), shown here at Noumea, New Caledonia on 3 August, was one of the four US heavy cruisers that would open fire on the island just before dawn on the 7th. The first American offensive in the Pacific War had begun.
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After the successful landings, the transports were tasked with unloading supplies. The work was slow and required the use of smaller boats. Pressing the issue was a near-promise to withdraw carrier protection by 9 August; by the end of the 8th, there was still much to be done. That night, defensive positions of the ships were arranged with the goal of blocking Japanese entrance into what would become Iron Bottom Sound.
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The cruisers Canberra, Australia, and USS Chicago (CA-29) patrolled in a NE-SW rectangle to the South of Savo Island, an outcropping roughly between Cape Esperance and Florida Island, with destroyers USS Bagley (DD-386) and Patterson (DD-392). The Northern side of Savo was patrolled in a broader square by the three heavy cruisers USS Vincennes (CA-44), USS Quincy, and USS Astoria (CA-34) with escorts USS Wilson (DD-408) and Helm (DD-388). A destroyer was stationed as a radar picket on either side as well, much further up New Georgia Sound; these ships were thought to have a detection range of 12 miles, when really it was less than 3. The only capable surface search radar was aboard USS San Juan (CL-54), stationed South of Florida Island guarding Eastern approaches.
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The transports, moored at Lunga Point, were protected in nearly all directions by warships. Yet unbeknownst to them, Rear Admiral Gunichi Mikawa had ordered an IJN force into motion a day prior at Rabaul.

I was talking with Raider, Harold Sheffield, at the reunion last week when one of the ladies came up and said to him, "It's at 994,3467." He chuckled and made a funny comment. I asked him what the numbers where for and he quite modestly explained to me that there was a video circling around news about a surprise send-off he had by the local New Hampshire police. I put it on our Facebook, so some of you may have already seen it... But I thought I'd give a little background because it's a really cute story.

About 2 months ago Mr S. had a mix-up with his doctor and ended up arriving an hour and a half early for his appointment. The nurse told him he had to hang out in the waiting room until the time. He wasn't too thrilled about this so he left and got in his car to go home. Actually, he told me, he was quite upset about it. It didn't help matters when he looked in his rear window and saw the flashing lights of a police car. The officer came up to his window and told him he was going 55 in a 35 Zone. Then he asked him about the Marine Corps sticker on his car. The officer said that he had been in the Corps for 20 years. "When were you in the Marines," he asked Mr. S. "I was in the Raiders in World War II," he answered. Well, the police officer was flabbergasted to meet a Raider. It's not every day you get to meet one of America's first Special Forces guys. It ended up the officer gave him a warning instead of a ticket, but with an invitation to come visit his family sometime. Mr. S did, and over the next few months they became pretty good friends.

Fast forward to last week when Mr S was getting ready to leave for the airport over an hour away. He got a knock on the door and it was his Police friend. " I'm going to escort you to the airport," he said. Mr. S told him not to go to the trouble but his friend was insistent. A few minutes later, driving down the road his daughter pointed out in the rear window. He looked and saw behind him were over a dozen police cars with their lights and sirens on, escorting him to the airport. It was his turn to be flabbergasted. 96 almost 97, a Sniper and Raider Scout, Mr. S is a very modest man. It was.... CONT. IN COMMENTS

The Cactus Air Force

The Marines captured the airfield within the first five days of their landings on Guadalcanal. The airstrip was quickly finished by Marines and Navy Seabees using the construction equipment left behind by the Japanese. It was named Henderson Field and the Marines spent the next six months defending it from Japanese attempts to retake the airstrip. A refurbished Japanese pagoda served as the control tower for Henderson Field and from August of 1942 until December of '42, a ragtag group of Marine Corps and Naval aviators along with Army Air Force pilots flew and fought from Henderson. Guadalcanal's air arm soon became known as the Cactus Air Force, after the Allied code name for Guadalcanal. These pilots flew operations around the clock under near constant Japanese aerial, artillery and naval bombardment. The painting above depicts pilots of USMC Captain Joe Foss's Flying Circus returning to Henderson Field after another mission. In what was later called a, "brilliant tactical maneuver," Foss and his men flew out to meet an inbound squadron of over 100 Japanese bombers. Foss and his squadron of eight USMC F4F Wildcats and four USAAF P-38 Lightnings managed to trick the much larger Japanese squadron into thinking they were outnumbered by playing hide and seek in the clouds. This ruse led to the Japanese to retreat back to their bases on Bougainville and Munda, thus saving Henderson. The above painting is Warm Reception by Jim Dietz. #cactusairforce #guadalcanal75RR #guadalcanal #ww2 #worldwar2 #usmc #marines #marinecorps #usaaf #airforce #readingroomspecial #armyairforce #grumman #f4fwildcat #wildcat #ironworks #hendersonfield #solomonislands #america #american #military #combat #historygeek #historybuff #historynerd #UnitedStatesMilitary #History

#TBT // Today in 1942, the 1st #CombatEngineer Battalion, @1stmardiv, uses captured Japanese equipment to commence work on #HendersonField during the Battle of #Guadalcanal.

Parroquia de Santa María de la Asunción.#rinconesconencanto#guadalcanal

It might over half way through the year but it's never to late to start kicking goals ✔️ gym free to guests and membership available to locals #heritageparkhotel #guadalcanal #honiara #solomonislands

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Parroquia de Santa María de la Asunción.#rinconesconencanto#guadalcanal

I was talking with Raider, Harold Sheffield, at the reunion last week when one of the ladies came up and said to him, "It's at 994,3467." He chuckled and made a funny comment. I asked him what the numbers where for and he quite modestly explained to me that there was a video circling around news about a surprise send-off he had by the local New Hampshire police. I put it on our Facebook, so some of you may have already seen it... But I thought I'd give a little background because it's a really cute story.

About 2 months ago Mr S. had a mix-up with his doctor and ended up arriving an hour and a half early for his appointment. The nurse told him he had to hang out in the waiting room until the time. He wasn't too thrilled about this so he left and got in his car to go home. Actually, he told me, he was quite upset about it. It didn't help matters when he looked in his rear window and saw the flashing lights of a police car. The officer came up to his window and told him he was going 55 in a 35 Zone. Then he asked him about the Marine Corps sticker on his car. The officer said that he had been in the Corps for 20 years. "When were you in the Marines," he asked Mr. S. "I was in the Raiders in World War II," he answered. Well, the police officer was flabbergasted to meet a Raider. It's not every day you get to meet one of America's first Special Forces guys. It ended up the officer gave him a warning instead of a ticket, but with an invitation to come visit his family sometime. Mr. S did, and over the next few months they became pretty good friends.

Fast forward to last week when Mr S was getting ready to leave for the airport over an hour away. He got a knock on the door and it was his Police friend. " I'm going to escort you to the airport," he said. Mr. S told him not to go to the trouble but his friend was insistent. A few minutes later, driving down the road his daughter pointed out in the rear window. He looked and saw behind him were over a dozen police cars with their lights and sirens on, escorting him to the airport. It was his turn to be flabbergasted. 96 almost 97, a Sniper and Raider Scout, Mr. S is a very modest man. It was.... CONT. IN COMMENTS

Major General James M. Myatt, USMC (Ret.) is guest speaker at tonight's #Guadalcanal Commemoration at the Marines' Memorial Club.

Festival de Comedia "Sonría, por favor" Noviembre 2017 #guadalcanal

A soldier of the British 14th army, wearing a steel helmet. The date is 1944. Unusual, because soldiers would usually wear felt bush hats. The bush hats were in a way, a badge of honour. It showed that a soldier had served in Burma. The toughest battleground that many soldiers will ever face.

War against japan early 1940-1942 was demoralising. Hong Kong would fall in 18 days and the capitulation of Singapore would lead to 100,000 allied prisoners, 55,000 rifles lost and 18,000,000 rounds of ammunition captured. The capture of Malayan was rapid. It seemed a forlorn battle. The Japanese were ruthless, brutal and tenacious fighters, capable of moving rapidly and horrific crimes that would make the average person curl back in horror. Here, today, we explore the Horror in the East.
#history#ww2#battles#japan##aviation#Usa#Britain#empire#allied#axishistory#warcrime#burma#guadalcanal#Hiroshima#singapore#hongkong#china#imperial#prisoners#bloodbath#jungle#asia#bushido#canada#australia#newzealand#india#ghurka

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