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D Plus 35 (D+35) 26 March, 1945

3rd Marines- Enemy killed during the period were 70. Embarkation of RCT 21 continued.

27-28 March, 1800-1800.

Operations for the period resulted in 78 of the remaining enemy being killed. RCT 21, less the elements to be embarked in the USS ALDERAMIN, completed embarkation. Elements to be embarked on the ALDERAMIN bivouacked in the vicinity of WHITE Beach. Co A 3d Tk Bn was detached from the 9th Marines at 0700 and embarked in five LSM's and departed for GUAM. The 1st echelon 3d Mar Div CP closed at TA 181-Y at 1200 and 2d echelon 3d Mar Div CP opened at the same place and the same time. The Commanding General and staff returned to GUAM by air leaving Airfield No. 2 at 1145 and arriving at GUAM at 1600. 3d Mar Div CP opened at base camp GUAM at 1700.

28-29 March, 1800-1800.

The 9th Marines and the 147th Infantry killed a total of 52 enemy during the period. RCT 21 completed embarkation at 1030.

29-30 March, 1800-1800.

Mopping up accounted for 77 enemy reported killed. Embarkation continued including elements of the 5th Field Depot over PURPLE and WHITE Beaches.

30-31 March, 1800-1800.

Thirty enemy were killed by ambushes and patrols. Fifteen enemy were captured. One DD fired call fires for the 1st Bn 147th Infantry into caves in the cliff area at TA 233-E-M. The Division furnished the naval gunfire team to control the fire. Two caves were closed and another was destroyed.

image 9th Marines

On 26 March the Regt took over an additional area of patrol responsibility which then gave it roughly half of the island to patrol and mop-up. Mopping up progressed satisfactorily. No organized resistance again presented itself save a small pocket at 184-EJ, 185-A, which held out against the 3d Battalion for three days after it was discovered. It was finally eliminated with tanks, flame throwers, AT rockets and demolitions. "Ambushes were set at night and succeeded in killing wandering small groups and individuals who had come out of hiding in search of food and water. During the mopping up phase the regiment killed 306 and captured 65 Japanese and sealed 767 caves. The regiment found and buried 365 previously killed Japs and removed nineteen Marine bodies of the 4th mar Div to the Division Cemetery. On April 4th 1945 the 147th Inf Aus relieved the 9th Mar of all patrol and security responsibility. The battalions commenced reembarkation on 6 April. The 1st and 2d battalions embarked that date departed from IWO JIMA on 7 April, an arrived at Guam on April 9 1945. The Third battalion embarked April 12 arrived at GUAM April 18 1945. Part IV. Comments. A. Administration.

1. Casualties of this regiment to 1800 4 April 1945 are as follows:

OFF ENL TOTALS KIA 22 486 508 WIA 62 1402 1464 MIA 0 7 7 DWRIA 4 53 57 TOTALS 88 1948 2036

image 26th Marines

D+35, 26 Mar 45 Subsequent to hostile action in rear area by a force of enemy infiltrators, one company of LT 326 was sent to patrol vicinity of beaches WHITE-1 and WHITE-2 about 0830; results were negative. At about 1230 remainder of LT 326 moved to beach WHITE-2 and was loaded out to the USS GOLDEN CITY about 1300. H&SCo moved to Beach WHITE-2 at about 1330 and was loaded out to the USS GEORGE F. ELLIOTT about 1700. CT 26 CP in the forward area closed at 1130; a rear CP functioned on beach WHITE-2 until the following day.

28th Marines - D+35 1800, 25 March to 1800, 26 March.

Fourteen enemy were killed attempting to enter the Combat CP during the night, bringing the total number of Japs killed on the perimeter of our defense while on the north end of IWO to forty-three.

Shortly after dawn a number of enemy attacked the Regimental dump killing two of our men and wounding four.

At 1030, the battered remnants of the 28th Marines held a memorial service in the 5th Division Cemetery for the officers and men who had died on IWO JIMA.

At the conclusion of the services, all units moved to WHITE beach and reembarked aboard the USS ZEILIN, USS WINGED ARROW, and the USS HERALD OF THE MORNING for movement to a rehabilitation area.

Casualties for period: Supporting units for period

OFF ENL

KIA & DOW 2 WIA 4 SK (evac) 1 TOTAL 7

 

CT-28 BOX SCORE

TOTAL YARDS ADVANCED: 5,600 TOTAL GROUND TAKEN (see overlay attached) TOTAL CAVES CLOSED: 2,880 TOTAL DAYS IN THE LINE: 31 TOTAL PRISONERS OF WAR: 16 *TOTAL ENEMY KILLED: 5,210

  image

On the morning of March 26, thirty-five days after the Fifth Division had landed, it fought off the enemy’s last attack. It was a short battle, but bitter in its intensity.

In the pre-dawn darkness the Japs came out of their hiding places in the northern end of the island. That they knew this was to be their last fight was evident by their dress. Some officers, of whom there were many, wore clean white shirts; their swords were highly polished. One Jap was a doctor, others were enlisted medicos. Some carried American rifles and grenades taken from dead Marines.

Once their forces were assembled, they moved stealthily along the western side of Iwo. They came to an area where Army fighter pilots and ground crews were bivouacked southwest of Airfield No. 2.

Then all hell broke loose. Fighter pilots awakened to the crackle of gunfire and exploding grenades. The Japs charged into tents, slashing their way forward with their swords and hurling grenades.

image It was the Fifth Pioneer Battalion, commanded by Major Robert Riddell, of La Jolla, California, which stopped the Japs. Barefooted and helmetless, the Pioneers scrambled out of their holes to attack with rifles and grenades of their own. One Marine, unable to find his rifle in the semi-darkness, charged off to the attack armed with a screwdriver.

When the battle was over the Pioneers counted 196 enemy dead and collected forty swords. Enemy survivors who sought to escape back to their caves were mercilessly hunted down and exterminated with grenades. The cost to the Pioneers was nine dead and forty wounded.

Category: Battle Summaries | Posted by IJH Staff |