D Plus 26 (D+26) 17 March, 1945
9th Marines- On March 17 began the mopping up phase of the operation. This Regiment operated in the original zone of action on this date.
24th Marines - 17 March, 1945
Between 0001 and dawn a small group of enemy attempted to cross the front of BLT 3/24. 11 were killed and it is thought those remaining returned to the zone of RCT 25. RCT 24 (less BLT 2/24) received orders to relieve RCT 25 in its zone at 0800. BLT 2/24 was to revert to parent control at that time. BLT 1/24 was ordered to comb again the area swept by both BLT 1/24 and BLT 3/24 the preceding day. The zone of RCT 25 was divided into two sectors, one of which along the coast was given to BLT 2/24 and the other inland to BLT 2/24. The BLTs were to begin from a position in the northeastern end of their sectors and systematically swept the area going toward the southwest. The areas were to be thoroughly mopped up, policed, gear salvaged, dead enemy buried and own dead collected. The mopping up began at 0800 and continued throughout the day. By 1600 approximately 132 enemy dead had been buried, 58 caves sealed, 13 Marine bodies collected, and 4 enemy killed throughout the RCT sector. BLT 1/24 took up positions for the night in the general vicinity of TA 200 N, s, X, 183 E and BLT 3/24 went into position in TA 182 T. There was no enemy activity during the remainder of the period.25th Marines - D plus 25, 17 March, 1945.
There was no enemy activity reported during the night of 15-16 March.
At 0800, BLT-2/24 was detached and reverted to control of RCT-24. At 1530, loading of personnel started when BLT-1/25 and BLT-2/25 embarked on a LST on Beach BLUE 1 for transfer to APA-178, the USS LANDER. RCT Hq and BLT-3/25 embarked on an LST on Beach BLUE 1 at 1530 and were transferred to APA-172, the USS GRIMES. At 1900, all troops of RCT-25 were on board their designated APSs.
D+26, 17 Mar 45 Weather: Cloudy and cool, visibility fair. Tank and dozer supported attack was resumed at 0830, with plans to maintain contact on the left but to push the north or northwest through any spots that appeared "soft". At about 1030 a disorganized counter-attack by an estimated 100 enemy troops was repulsed by LT 328 in the center of the CT zone of action. The right and center progressed to the north coast and pivoted to the southwest, strong enemy positions holding up the left had developed final resistance into a deeply ravined pocket of roughly 800 x 200 yards. No artillery nor barrage rockets were fired on this date, nor thereafter, due to small remaining enemy occupied area. Casualties: 2 Off, 78 Enl. Returned to duty: - Off, &nnbsp; 36 Enl. Effective strength: 86 Off, 1570 Enl.
27th Marines - D plus 26 17 March, 1945
Our combat team, as such, remained in division reserve until reembarkation on 23 march, 1945. However, a composite battalion made up of companies from all three battalions was organized and attached to CT-26. The enemy units identified in this organizations zone of action during the operation were:
145th Infantry Regiment 309th Independent Infantry Battalion 311th Independent Infantry Battalion 312th Independent Infantry Battalion 27th Air Squadron 1st Independent Machine Gun Battalion 12th Independent Anti-tank Battalion 2nd Med. Mortar Battalion 17th Independent Mixed Brigade Arty Bn, 145th Inf Regt 59th Anchorage Hq.
28th Marines - D+26 1800, 16 March to 1800, 17 March.
Night activity: Night activity was the same as on D+25Daylight operations: The 5th Pioneer Battalion was ordered to attack at 0830 to the northwest, down the large draw running across our front. CT-26 on our right was swinging around to the west so that its front was perpendicular to our front, thus pocketing the remaining enemy, including Lt. Gen. Kuribayshi, as reported by a captured Japanese Sgt. Maj., in the draw and along the western portion of Kitano Point.
LT-128 and LT-228 were ordered to hold and support by fire.
The Pioneers were unable to advance more than fifty yards during the day and in the late afternoon were forded to withdraw to the position they had occupied prior to the attack. However, this is no discredit to them because, while they were perfectly capable of holding a defensive position, they were not trained infantrymen and should not have been expected to attack successfully.
Artillery fire ceased in our zone today because of the restricted area in which the enemy was pocketed and the consequent danger of hitting friendly troops.
CP's: no change.
Casualties for period: Supporting units for period
KIA & DOW 1 9 1 destroyer for illumination only WIA 26 Co C, 5th Tank Bn. SK (evac) 9 TOTAL 1 44
Combat efficiency: 30%