Last sight of Leyte

Manarawat, Leyte - supplies

Manarawat, Leyte – supplies

Manarawat, Leyte

Manarawat, Leyte

Dulag, Leyte

Dulag, Leyte

Gen. Swing & staff at Manarawat, Leyte

Gen. Swing & staff at Manarawat, Leyte

My father swore that this incident occurred, but on which island, I can not say. Although Smitty already felt great respect for his commander, General Swing, he developed even more after witnessing this event: “A bunch of us were hunkered down due to the resistance we suddenly encountered. Everyone dove for cover and tried to figure out where the bullets were coming from except one guy still standing and looking around. (The general did not have his insignia on his uniform.) One G.I. yelled out, ‘Get down you f–kin’ jerk! You want your head blown off?’ I looked over and saw it was the old man himself and thought jeez is that soldier ever going to get reamed when we get back. But, the general got down and nothing was ever said about it.”

There are other stories about Swing that are quite similar, including one where, rather than getting down, he actually walked over to the palm tree where the sniper was firing from and pointed him out as the U.S. sharpshooters dropped him.
From the moment the 11th Airborne landed on Leyte, the fighting was heavy, but they made excellent process across the island. Suzuki’s Thirty-Fifth Army became desperate, especially after the fall of Ormoc, which cut off his troops from their naval supply.

While on Leyte, the 11th A/B was attached to General Krueger’s Sixth Army. A superior reference guide to the movements of this unit can be found in the various books by, Lt. General E.M. Flanagan, Jr. (Ret.). The Angels: A History of the 11th Airborne Division gives detailed accounts by the author, who himself was the commander of the 11th Division’s B Battery of the 457th Parachute Field Artillery Battalion. And – a very nice man I might add. I was privileged to have two phone conversations with the general.

Personal note – I hope many of you will go the on Saturday when I will be a guest writer. We are attempting to put our two stories into perspective as our fathers grow and enter the army during WWII. We request a comment to establish if we have accomplished that goal. Thank you and feel free to comment on this blog as well.


About GP Cox

Everett Smith served with the Headquarters Company, 187th Regiment, 11th A/B Division during WWII. This site is in tribute to my father, "Smitty." GPCox is a member of the 11th Airborne Association. Member # 4511 and extremely proud of that fact!

Posted on December 6, 2012, in Uncategorized, WWII and tagged , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 9 Comments.

  1. I’m really looking forward to sharing your post with my readers. For your readers, the link is Hope to see you there and please leave a comment so we know if we are heading in the right direction.
    See you Saturday.
    Judy Guion


  2. I tried to go to the page your are guesting on and the addy is not right??? Can you tell me what the right addy is? I don’t want to miss your post.


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