Marshall County

Cpl. Kenneth O. Sweet





This is my father, Cpl, Kenneth O. Sweet, State Center, Iowa 1921-1989 . He was in the Marine Corp Raiders. He served in Guam, Okinawa and many other islands.

This is the picture for an article written, but never published. It was called “A platoons eye view of Guam”. I will attach the story. ~Cindi Sinclair


The following story was written by Staff Sergeant John F. Reilly, New Hampton, Iowa, Marine Corps Combat Correspondent, with tactical advice by Second Lieutenant (now First Lt.) Richard R. Goheen, Princeton, New Jersey.

War in the headlines is islands taken and miles of advance, but to the sons, brothers and sweethearts of those who read the headlines, battle is often as it was with the platoon of the First Marine Brigade that I accompanied during the Guam campaign. War took this platoon of raider veterans into action one morning on Orote Peninsula with 55 men and left it less than two hours later with but 27 still able to fight. The unit commander conferences of the Fourth Marine Regiment that I attended considered every angle of the operation, so I anticipated giving the platoon the scoop on how the campaign was to be fought when I boarded their ship (LST) at the staging area. "The plans are perfect," I said to Platoon Sergeant John W. Jones, Los Angeles, Calif. "The Twenty second Marines sweep through Agat and block off Orote. The Fourth Marines establish lines 1500 yards inland. Then we and the Twenty Second take Orote after the army assumes the Fourth Marine lines in the hills."

"Plans are always perfect," said Jones, "but they don't show one thing --the mud and blood." The 45 days we spent at sea passed swiftly.

Finally the night before D day, we crowded the rail of the boat and in the distance saw the faint flash of naval guns and heard their far-away boom. Morning came. We got up at 5, ate in the dark and by 7 were in the small amphibious landing craft that were to take us to shore. The drivers started the motors and the hold of the boat was filled with sound and exhaust fumes. Breathing was difficult. We were glad-when the signal came and we rocked slowly out to sea over the board-covered ammunition that floored the hold of the boat. (LST) We sank deep into the water and as the cup like treads of the amphibious tractors began to churn the sea many of us looked back and saw Big John Novina (Corporal John Novina, Gary, Ind.), winner of the Distinguished Service Cross on New Georgia waving good-by with tears streaming down his cheeks. To see Big John crying at any other time would have seemed funny. But we sympathized. He had a rupture and the doctors told him the day before he could not make the landing.

The noise was tremendous. It had several different levels. It varied from the heavy whoomp of the great battleship guns to the lighter crackle of machine gun fire. Rockets swished overhead and boomed ahead of us as they hit shore. The exploding powder formed a haze of smoke like the light fog of morning. It formed a wall of blue, white and brown between the mountains and the sea. Our am-track was crowded. It was impossible to sit down or stand up once in position.

To turn around was a major operation. Private First Class Casey L. Dreyer (Milwaukee, WI) was crowded against my feet in the bottom of the boat. He kept asking a Marine next to him how far we were from shore. The Marine misjudged the distance and gave him the same answer of 400 yards twice. "To hell with you," Casey said. He turned to a Marine on his other side. "How far is it from shore," he asked. When the Marine answered, "400 yards" Casey quite naturally became a little abusive. As we proceeded forward great smudges of smoke rose on our left from Orote Peninsula where planes were dive bombing and ships were shelling. We reached the green shore waters at last, and passed through them. The tractor gave a hard lurch and its treads clawed the soil of Guam. We stopped 10 yards inland. Ahead of us and to each side were giant coconut logs tied from palm tree to palm tree with barbed wire as antitank and tractor obstacles, but in many places these were blasted down. There was apparently no reason why we couldn't ride 1000 yards inland as planned. Then to our right we saw several tractors with their treads blown off. The Japs had sown anti-tank and tractor mines in a belt six feet in depth along the beach. They had already taken their deadly toll.

The fresh smell of earth and grass was good to us after our long daysat sea. We hit the deck and as I lay on the ground waiting for our lines to form for the push across the open valley that stretched on to the foothills, I chewed blades of grass. After the long days at sea without fresh food, the grass tasted good to me. "Just like lettuce, pal, just like lettuce,'' a Marine lying next to me said.

Naval gunfire had driven the Japs from most of the well made dugouts that dotted the shore at the spot where we landed. Around the dugouts and ahead of us on the coastal plain the red subsoil of Guam was turned to the sun in shell hole after shell hole. Some of the craters were so wide and deep that they were like small swimming pools back home. "Contact on the right, contact on the left!" Our little wait was over. We moved out. Heavy sniper fire hit us as we went forward across the grass covered plain, but we seldom stopped. Our job was to establish a line 1500 yards inland as rapidly as possible. It was hard to ignore the sniper bullets. First they made us a little afraid. Then a little angry. We wanted to hurt, we wanted to kill the killers. But we rushed ahead to the foothills. On the second rise, Jap fire increased; we stopped and a few feet behind us the mortar squads placed their short stubby stove pipes. The mortar shell looks like a very small aerial bomb. The mortar man knelt by the tube, dropped the little bomb down fins first, ducked his head to escape the muzzle blast, there was a thump and a whoosh and the shell was on its way.

I asked the Marine next to me what they were firing at. He pointed ahead, "There's a 6 inch gun in them hills. It's been following one of our sub chasers all over the harbor."

The stove pipes behind us spewed out about 25 shells and the Marine beside me said, "We got him, we got him now." Then the Japs countered. We heard the whistling "whew, whew" of a descending shell. We heard its exploding crump as it hit ground ahead of us.The word was passed, "Bring up the machine guns."

Two of them came up the hill from the rear of the platoon. Their fire made the Japs withdraw into depressions where our direct fire couldn't touch them. The Jap mortars had the range now. A shell landed on a machine gun. It killed a member of the crew. Private First Class Roy D. Key (Memphis, St. Tennessee), and I flopped in the same shell hole. Four shells showered us with dirt. The farthest landed five yards away. Now our mortars talked awhile. They silenced the Jap mortars and we went forward. With grenades and rifle fire we cleaned out the Jap positions. During the last part of the fire fight "Jonsey", the platoon sergeant, directed the platoon, taking the place of the platoon leader who had been wounded in the mortar barrage.

Now Second Lieutenant Richard R. Goheen, Princeton, N. J. arrived to take command. He was 29, a Republican, and Radio Tokyo to the contrary a gentleman even though a Marine. I think as soon as we saw him standing before us, we sensed that to him the world is a wonderful place where adventure is always just around the corner. To find it was the problem. Selling bonds or the equivalent looked pretty dull to him after graduating from college, but Lt. Goheen noticed that newspapermen seemed to have an interesting time. So, in the role of foreign correspondent, a newspaperman he became. He went to Paris. True, no newspaper had hired him, but one could free lance, couldn't one. Lt. Goheen free lanced, but things were a bit difficult and he returned to America. But he had started to become a newspaperman and he would be one. 'Where?' Chicago was the town. The city of Al Capone and the rackets attracted him, -- the City News Bureau hired him. Time dulled Chicago and he heard that General Foods wanted a representative in India to buy Cashew nuts. "India! A land of tiger hunts, elephants and a strange people!," Lt. Goheen thought to himself. That was the place for him. He stayed in India three years. He stayed until the war lessened Asia's lure.

To the Marine Corps, to Guam, to a hill just a little below the high peak of Mount Alifan, and to the First Platoon, Company E, Fourth Marines, First Marine Brigade, came Lt. Goheen. Later in the campaign fellow officers were to dub him "Jungle Jim" half joking, half respectfully, for whenever there was a possibility of action Lt. Goheen never said, "Sgt. Jones, take five men and scout that hut." It was, "Sgt. Jones, get five men to go with me on a short patrol."

Such a man was Lt. Goheen of Princeton, New Jersey, the very tough gentleman who was to lead us through the Guam campaign."Move to the left," the word came. "Get going" the Lieutenant said. We started out. To our right was the highest ridge of the hills. To our left, and far below, the sea. Casey Dryer displayed unexpected pig appeal when we passed through an abandoned Chamorro farm house. His soaring "sooey, sooey," brought two small pigs to his heels. His soothing "come, Piggy, Piggy, Piggy, Piggy" kept them with the platoon for almost half a mile. Finally the steep hills lessened Casey's attractions and he had to abandon his designs on the porkers. Shortly after passing the pigs we took a short breathing spell on top of a small hill. We saw a very large man striding along about 10 yards below us. Lt. Goheen yelled "Bob" and the large man turned around and gave us a hasty wave, and then came up to speak to Goheen. The large man was First Lt. Robert J. Herwig, Oakland, Calif. former all-American center for University of California. He had a hole in the front of his helmet. The bullet had hit dead center and had passed all the way to the back before it finally came out.

The path was clearly marked by a ridge in the steel. After he left Lieutenant Goheen turned to me, "His wife is Kathleen Winsor," he said. "Her first novel, ‘Forever Amber’ is to come out in November and the publishers predict thousands of copies sold. If Bob, weren't Bob, he might be known as Mrs. Winsor." But as the few of us talking to the Lieutenant watched the big quiet man striding away we agreed that he would never be known as Mrs. Winsor no matter how popular his wife's book became.

Our slight rest was over, we moved out again. We reached the spot we were to dig in for the night. Dusk was about to fall. To the left was Harmon Road. We knew the Japs were ahead of us on Mount Alifan as we dug our foxholes, but they were quiet. Darkness fell. We lay silent waiting for the rustling of underbrush ahead, that would betray the presence of Japs. Our 75mm shells whistled overhead and crashed into tree covered Mount Alifan. The artillery was trying to keep the Japs from concentrating for a night attack. From ten o'clock on the Japs attacked and night was day as star shells illuminated the forest. The Jap attack was spearheaded by four tanks which clanked down Harmon Road. Behind the tanks came trucks loaded with Jap infantry. The tanks approached single file and at the same time Jap infantry came from Alifan. Our own tanks were in stationary position along Harmon Road.

At short night range they smashed two Jap tanks into burning hulks. Another was knocked out by combined tank and bazooka fire. Bazookman Bruno Oribiletti, Kenosha, Wis., a private first class, stopped the last tank five yards from his own foxhole. Fifteen minutes later a Japanese mortar shell killed the Wisconsin hero. We could hear the infiltrating Japs crawling through the underbrush as they sifted toward our lines. But we waited until they were almost close enough to throw grenades into our foxholes before we fired. Some charged our lines with drawn swords yelling "Banzai". They were easy. Our fire was deadly, in not more than 300 yards a battalion of the Fourth Marine raiders killed an estimated 200 Japs. The attack lessened when our fire changed their armored spearhead into junk iron. The mass of metal still smoked and charred Japs lay outside the next morning. The tank that nearly over-ran Orbiletti contained a Jap burned beyond recognition as a human being. "He smells like roast pig" a by-standing Marine said.

About noon the next day the army relieved us on the lines. We went down to the shore we left the day before. For the first time since they landed the Marines had a chance to look around. For the next few days they rested and filled in on the lines when shock troops were needed. While in the rest area the constant boom and crack of artillery fire hit our ears. The crackle of machine gun and rifle fire increased the cacophony of sound. Flares and star shells made the night bright day at times and the flash of shells from the pack howitzers could be seen in the mountains. A couple of days after we came down the mountains the smell of death was in the air. A walk along our landing beach toward strongly defended Agat was a gradually increasing torture to the olfactory nerves. The worst smell came from a pillbox somewhat short of Agat. It had been one of the two main fortifications on the beach. It was double tiered and stretched for perhaps 25 yards along the beach.The pillbox had been built into a solid rock cliff. Thick walls of cement, logs and earth thrown over the top protected it, but it was a shattered ruin when we looked it over. Great chunks of blasted rock and cement lay before it. Several dead Japs lay in front of a 77rnm anti boat gun that pointed seaward. Other Japs were scattered through-out the fortification.

Maggots already crawled from some of the wounds. It was impossible to enter the cave without having the facial muscles contract and quiver. Our imaginations had never pictured a more horrible smell.Father Redmond, the famed old raider chaplain of the Fourth, said mass the afternoon before the battle for Orote. I can't remember all the hawk faced old priest said in his short sermon. But I remember one sentence, "If you trust in God you will know no fear."Jimmy Roosevelt when commander of a raider battalion was once compelled against his will to make the priest a prisoner at large. The priest was caught borrowing a piano from a docked ship for the Marines in his raider battalion. The ships captain complained and Jimmy although heartily in agreement, was virtually forced to take action.By the 26th the Twenty Second Marines had completely blocked off the mouth of Orote Peninsula. We marched in the 26th behind Major Messier, our battalion commander.

The Japs gave us a vicious little counterattack as we went in. Our platoons sole activity was to get as close to the ground as possible. There was another platoon ahead of us. We couldn't fire. Major Messier swiftly and very efficiently organized his line and the attack was repelled with only four or five wounded men.Tanks rumbled up to join us the next morning, As they lined along the road we were to push out from, a Marine next to me said, "They're like big dinosaurs, aren't they?" They were. The signal came to move out and the tanks crushed a path through the brush and trees for us. Only the largest forest giants stood against them. Our platoon followed tank three. We watched the trees for snipers; we watched for fire lanes and pillboxes. We were clawing at the vitals of enemy opposition. We stumbled over the small trees crushed flat by the tank; the twisted bush caught our feet. We were like blind men walking over railroad ties. A drizzling rain added to our discomfort.Mid-afternoon we hit a strong concentration of enemy pillboxes. Their fire pinned us down. The rain fell in sheets now. We were soaked, cold and our teeth chattered. We crouched low to escape the bullets and I heard a Marine say and he probably spoke for all of us, "I must have a bucket full in the seat of my trousers."

"We were torn between a desire to rise from tile squatting position most had assumed and a fear of enemy bullets. Their fire gradually died down and we proceeded cautiously into their area. No fire met us, but Lieutenant Goheen feared a few possums remained in the pillboxes. He ordered the flame throwers to advance. We covered them as they shot their fiery liquid at the Jap fortifications, but not a shot was fired against them. There were gasoline drums in one pillbox. Lieutenant Goheen yelled, "knock it off," when he saw the flame throwers headed in that direction. The burning gas would make us excellent targets that night. We would be outlined by the flame. We threw grenades at that pillbox, but the drums were earth filled. They were a barricade. The dead Jap within this small log covered fortification wore sniper shoes. About ten feet away was a tree with a small platform he could climb for observation or firing.The Jap was not more than 18 or 19. He had pictures of his family and one of Shirley Temple with him. He also had a picture of a beautiful American girl perched on the side of a swimming pool. The Marine that found this photograph said, "Gosh, but she's beautiful." Bottles of whisky, saki and wine were found in another pillbox. The men smacked their lips. Lieutenant Goheen cast a skeptical glance in that direction. "Watch yourselves boys," he said, "You're not in Kelly's saloon." But he allowed us a few drinks and the liquor took the cold from our bones and made us hungry.

Our second cold canned C ration meal of the day when supplemented with Jap crackers and fish tasted like a banquet. We were digging in for the night when a Browning Automatic Rifle barked out behind us. We turned and saw Kenneth H. Simpson, West Frankfort, Ill. standing almost on top of a startled Marine and shooting into the bushes. The 250 pound Marine, Private First Class Kenneth O. Sweet, States Center, Iowa, had been taking a peaceful sleep not two feet from a very live but quiet Jap. Simpson, a former all state football player in Illinois, grinned and looked down at Sweet. "Okay, Ken," he said, "Go back to sleep and pleasant dreams."

Ever since we hit the area we had been taking covetous glances at a tempting piece of Jap booty that lay ahead of our lines. It was a Jap gun of approximately 40mm caliber and would help bolster our night lines. Finally Private First Class Max R. Spilsbury, Colonia Juarex, Mexico, spoke up, pointing at the gun. "How about it Goheen," he said. Lieutenant Goheen had told us that if we called him Lieutenant or sir in the battle zone he would turn around and salute us. "The Japs," he said, "like nothing better than to shoot an officer, and I don't intend to be shot." Lieutenant Goheen told Spilsbury, "Go ahead. Get a couple of BAR men and four or five rifle men to cover you though."

Four of us went forward to get the piece. Spillsbury threw a couple of grenades at the Japs laying around the guns to make sure they were dead and we walked into the position. Three Japs lay around the gun without a mark on them except for the grenade fragments that had just hit them. They lay as if sleeping. Concussion from either bombs or artillery shells had killed them. But the fourth, a young, strong and tough looking man had withstood the tremendous explosions. He died by his one toe. (((Sorry but I couldn't resist that one.))) One of his slit toed sniper shoes was off. His big toe was in the trigger of his rifle, its muzzle pointed at his throat and there was a hole the size of a silver dollar where the bullet hit. Two of us picked up the gun, the other two the ammunition. Walking back was hard. We expected every moment to get a bullet in the back. But we returned safely and set up the gun in the mounting darkness.

The Japs did not attack that night, but the blackness was hideous with hand grenades--our own. A man to our right was sure the Japs were sneaking up on him so from dusk to dawn we crouched low in our foxholes listening to bits of metal whiz above.Morning finally came. Max looked rather quizzically at the Jap gun. "You know," he said, "I guess I should be happy that the Japs didn't hit us last night, but I'll be dammed if I wouldn't be happy to have used that gun against them."

About eight o'clock we lined along the road waiting the signal to advance. The sun was shining. We warmed up and our clothes dried.A sniper's bullet kicked puffs of red dust around us as we waited for the signal to advance. Few bothered to take cover.But the yell back of our lines, "corpsman, corpsman, a guy is hit," caused some to climb into the foxholes prepared behind the road the evening before.Lieutenant Goheen yelled "move out."

We crossed the road and entered the thick thorny brush beyond. We knew ahead of us lay the main concentration of Jap strength on Orote. Lieutenant Goheen had told us to be ready for today. Jap documents were captured and Jap prisoners talked. Someplace ahead of us there were Japs that were to die rather than leave the area they selected to defend.We proceeded forward through a Jap mine field. A fan shaped arrangement topped the mines. Either to kick the fan or the branches twisted in them meant death. We threaded through without casualty, but we learned later clean up squads suffered from them. The leader of the third squad called Lieutenant Goheen to his side. He pointed ahead. Nip Marines were hitting the second and third platoons of our company on our right flank.Lieutenant Goheen then maneuvered us onto to high ground. From our position we could give the Japs flanking fire. The valley below seemed filled with Japs. Across the valley was a hill that kept us from seeing the old Marine Barracks and Orote airfield.As we peered through the heavy brush into the valley, the word "withdraw" passed along our lines. Lieutenant Goheen heard it. He stood up and shouted over the noise of firing. "Stay where you are. It sounds like a Jap trick." We stayed in our advanced position. Then from the left enemy machine gun fire added to the rifle fire singing overhead. Sweet turned his machine gun in that direction. By holding our heads close to the ground and gazing along the brush roots we could barely make out a Jap pillbox. Its gun was shooting high. Looking toward it we could see the twigs falling as the bullets hit them. Sweet's machine gun opened up. Our rifles barked. Jap rifle fire gradually died down and the machine gun in the pillbox stopped firing.Ahead the Japs were still attacking the second and third platoons oblivious to ours.We shot them down like rabbits as they scurried across the field. The Japs then hit their foxholes and shell holes.

But our men disregarded the enemy fire and stood up so they could spot them better over the heavy brush. Some of our men kept score on the number they killed. A couple of Marines had an effective combination. One would shoot and the other would tell him where his bullets were landing. They accounted for nine Japs between them.But our field day ended. Suddenly machine guns opened on us. Seventy seven shells landed in our midst. The first shell knocked out our bazooka team. We dived for cover. I fell into the only shell hole in sight two men dived in with me.There was another explosion. I heard a ping on my helmet. Shell fragments passed under me tearing the earth and I felt a slight pain in my shoulder as someone flicked me lightly but sharply with a whip.I found later that the sling of my carbine had been cut in two, there was a dent in my helmet, a piece carved from the stock, and an inch and a halt gash in my shoulder.Death turned her face away for many others in the next few minutes. Shell fragments knocked the point of Private First Class Harold W. Johnson's pick. Johnson was from (Mount Vernon, Missouri). Other men had their packs shredded by the vicious stuff. Fragments ripped two Browning Automatic Rifle clips from the belt of Private First Class Thomas Carmody (Dallas, Texas) without exploding them. When a bullet hit the BAR clips of a Marlne in a neighboring platoon they exploded tearing part of his side away.While I had been laying in a shell hole wishing to hell I was somewhere else our machine guns facing the valley below had been playing havoc with the enemy.The fourth Jap shell landed almost on top of it. All the squad were wounded. "Big Tex" (unnamed to avoid opening old sorrows), the assistant gunner, died feeding ammunition into the gun. Private First Class Tony Stea, Brooklyn, New York, the gunner, had his arm blown half away. Ignoring the bloody stump he continued to operate the gun until the belt of ammunition had passed through. (Up for Congressional Medal of Honor).The platoon's corpsman was hit in the arm about the same time Stea received his wound. The corpsman was a red faced, quiet and rather small boy. Aboard the LST his main concern had been to see we got our atabrine. That had been his duty then and he had filled it carefully, conscientiously.Tending the wounded under fire was his duty now and he filled this duty in the same manner he filled the other.Blood was flowing down his arm, shells were falling, but the corpsman continued to kneel-upright by the wounded man he was tending.

Two more Japs were charging him with fixed bayonets. He took careful aim and fired twice. Both Japs dropped. Then from across the clearing charged 15 more Japs. Sgt. Daley headed for our lines on a dead run. The tanks machine guns and riflemen cut them down as soon as Daley got out of range.The wounded were leaving the lines now. There was no one to bandage their wounds. Some of the walking tried ineffectually to staunch the flow of blood with their hands.But they did not have to walk far. By a lucky chance Dr. George W'. Elerding, Los Angeles, Calif. established a first aid station almost on the front lines but to the left and well back of our position.The station was in a shell shattered storehouse and was protected by seven water cooled machine guns which not only guarded the front line hospital, but filled in our lines. The doctor could get only five Marines to man the guns so in desperation assigned two combat fatigue cases to the remaining weapons. Major Messer immediately ordered the aid station 500 yards behind the lines when he saw its position. The pillboxes in the little valley were silent now. Only an occasional sniper shot came from a well hidden and passed over Jap.But their pillboxes had done a deadly two hours work. Over half of our platoon alone was evacuated from the lines. Some were dead, others wounded, and some few suffered from combat fatigue. The strain of battle was written on the faces of the boys who stayed at the front. The facial muscles of some quivered uncontrollably; the faces of others were etched with lines for the first time in their lives by the strain of the fire fight.We went forward. In the valley the Japs lay in all the awkward attitudes of death. The area was a human slaughter house. Six hundred of the enemy had died before us. A Marine, gazing at the bloody valley, said, "It looks like a well filled fly trap like the one that used to sit outside the grocery store back home." Two water cooled American machine guns were recovered in the valley. They had been used against us and probably had been taken from the Marines garrisoned on Guam before the war.We dug in for the night at the old Marine Corps rifle range near Jap anti-aircraft guns and three and five inch gun emplacements.In spite of occasional sniper fire .we slept well that night and woke fate next morning.The-next afternoon Lt. Goheen smilingly passed the word to us, "We," he said, "have the honor of officially securing Orote." The tanks rumbled up. We climbed on the top and they started toward the end of the peninsula.

On the tip of the peninsula trees were torn to shreds and walls were leveled--a quiet tribute to the Navy fire that had hit the area since the start of the campaign. One house stood with its second story blown off and with the steps to it leading to the sky.We threw hand grenades in the enemy positions on the tip. We did not encounter any live Japs. Only two dead ones were found. The Japs did not retreat to the tip. They died with fanatical loyalty in the little valley as they had planned.Subjectively speaking Corporal Harold Headrick, Flint, Mich. laid hands on the most valuable souvenir. The corporal, taking a drafting course from the Ryan Aeronautical Corporation obtained an expensive drafting Set minus only the T square. Another Marine, proudly sporting a pair of split toed sniper shoes looked on disdainfully and said, "Even if I knew what Headrick has, I wouldn't want it." Returning our youngest raider veteran, Private First Class Robert S. Sorenson, Racine, Ws. toasted the conquest with a can of grapefruit juice. At 18 Sorenson is a veteran of Bougainville and Emirau Islands.As we looked over the souvenirs back at camp a Marine threw a grenade into the field where we were standing. The men squawked and disappeared like chickens that have seen a hawk's shadow. The grenade did not explode. With almost motherly solicitude, the Marine had removed the powder.

The next day Private First Class Woodrow Wilson Abraham, Jackson, Miss., a Guam Marine of prewar days, came to see us. As you may know we asked him how he liked modern Guam. He succinctly replied, "It ain't the same and not what it used to be.""Why?" we asked." They used to bring steak and eggs for me to eat at almost this same spot. Now I'm eating K ration." Chamorros did our laundry for three dollars a month, but I've worn these same dam dungarees since the campaign began. I throw my socks away because there's no water nor time to wash them in. "Another thing," continued the Mississippi Marine, "Those barracks were mighty comfortable, but since I've been on Guam the only thing I've slept in have been rain filled foxholes." One souvenir resembled a cops badge. "Insular Patrol" was written on the top and there was a Marine Corps emblem in the center. Abrahams identified it as the badge worn by Marine policemen in pre-Jap Guam. These men had both the power to arrest and to decide the disputes brought before them.During the next week we rested, taking over the army lines in the hills. The week was peaceful but as usual muddy.On August 7 word came that the Japs were drifting to the north end of the island in Third Division territory.The First Marine Brigade under Brigadier (now Major) General Lemuel C. Shepherd, La Jolla, Calif. was sent to help them out.The platoon was unconcernedly digging foxholes in its first camp on the north end when Sgt. Daley, jumped to his feet, pointed to the front and yelled, "Thems Nips." Two Japs were walking along our front as if they were on the streets of Tokyo. Our line opened up and mowed one of them down. The other was hit, but beat our bullets to the punch. He blew his throat out with a hand grenade.

It couldn't happen in Brooklyn but at this camp we played two softball games in almost complete silence. The Japs were just a short distance away--the pop of their machine guns could be heard throughout the contest--and if the players had been noisy Jap fire might have postponed the game.We checked our rifles at home plate and played the doubleheader on a diamond with cardboard ration box bases and a parachute flare home plate.In the first game the "Privates", captained by Private First Class Richard G. Keltesch, Milwaukee, Wis. defeated their non-commissioned officers, captained by Sergeant Sabbath De Ceeare, Bronx, N. Y., 7-6. But in the second game the NCO's aided by Lt. Goheen, trounced their lower ranking friends 38 to 6. Mother Daley who never played a complete game of either baseball or kittenball in his life, made the bats. In the second game, the Sergeant, known throughout this Raider organization for his skill with thelasso, blasted out five hits in eight times at bat. The spectators missed cheering their favorite club, but the umpire, Private First Class Edward J. Nelson, Lima, Ohio, enjoyed the silence. He wasn't called a blind bat once-- except in a whisper.Our next camp was near a former brewery. When Lieutenant Colonel Alan Shapley, Detroit, Mich., commanding officer of the Fourth Marines, limited us to two bottles of beer and half a bottle of soda pop per man, it seemed almost like the states.

We sent out patrols to the end of the island from our next encampment. Our battalion was in perimeter defense and almost every day or night one to five Jape would dash their brains out against our lines-and perhaps 20 would be killed on patrol. The last patrol was typical of the way we made except we rode in trucks toward Rittidian Point--the end of the island. We rode until we reached the trees the Japs felled across the road. We walked on from there. Two Japs sprang out before us after we proceeded about a mile. Sgt. Daley was in the lead armed with a slung carbine and a pistol. He leveled the pistol and fired four ineffective shots at the Japs 40 yards away. Then Daley steadied the pistol on his forearm and knocked the legs from under one Jap. The other got away in the underbrush by the side of the road. A rifleman who had hurried up at the sound of the shooting pumped a couple more into the struggling figure. The Jap lay still. Daley went to get the Japs saber and rather casually placed his hand on the Jap's chest. Daley jumped a mile. The Jap was alive. Daley whipped out his knife and slit the Jap's throat from ear to ear. Somewhat past this point we had to leave the road. The trail we followed took us to the cliff overlooking the coastal plain below Ritidian Point. Beneath as far as the eye could see stretched a gigantic coconut grove interspersed with beautiful areas of grass and beyond stretched the green-blue sea which sparkeld with white caps and was framed with a sandy beach. The beach and sea begged to swimming, but we knew that swimming was one way the Japs would like to catch us.The cliff below was steep and we knew if we missed a hand or foot-hold our bodies would smash on the rocks hundreds of feet below.

The failure of the Japs to take the advantage of defense the trail offered was symptomatic of their disorganization.When we reached the plain we saw the palm branch lean-to's that sheltered them from the rain and sun, but the Japs heard or saw us coming, although we tried to walk quietly, and they faded into the underbrush.We walked about an hour. Then we heard the sound of chopping. Lieutenant Goheen formed us into a skirmish line and we proceeded toward the sound with rifles ready.The noise led us to the cliff. We caught sight of two Japs in a cave part of the way up. We thought we would surround them and perhaps get more so we held fire. But about the time we got into position the Japs took off toward the top of the cliff on a trail we didn't know existed.They reached cover before we could pick them off.In the Cave we found a saki bottle filled with water, two sacks of coconuts and four rifles loaded but rusted so badly they could not be fired. In the bottom of a sack jammed with old clothes were two hand grenades in good condition.It was getting late now and Lieutenant Goheen gave the order to return to camp. Sorenson had the lead and because he was younger than the other youngsters took delight now as on other occasions in trying to prove age was his only inferiority.As far as I was concerned he did it this time.We reached the road.

As we passed the Jap Daley shot we noted that one of the Japs (not us) skulking comrades removed his sniper shoes. A discussion arose concerning the distance of Daley's pistol shot.To settle the question we halted and Sgt. Daley and another Marine started to pace off the distance.They went beyond the last member of the patrol to a point where they could see around a bend in the road.We heard shots. We rushed back and Daley explained two Japs had been following the patrol hoping to pick off a straggler.Daley didn't shoot as well this time. Both Japs escaped. We rode back to the camp in the trucks. In camp, Daley presented the captured saber to Lieutenant Goheen. We knew more than two weeks ago that the Lieutenant wanted one so Daley himself, no less, had called the platoon together and in the informal meeting it was arranged that the first saber captured would go to Goheen. The Lieutenant was as pleased with the gift as a 12 year old boy with a new 22. He called First Lieutenant Leonard W. Alford, Garrett, Indiana, E company commander to our area. "Al," he said, "inspect us."Then about half a squad and Lieutenant Goheen went through an American inspection of arms with captured Jap weapons.The days now of the Guam campaign were numbered. In a couple of days the trucks came again and we rode down to the ships at sea. As we rode the raiders sang their songs. They boarded one ship and I boarded another, and I felt sorry their ship was not mine.

The campaign for Guam was finished.