MIDWAY/D-DAY

"The Battle of Midway" painting by: Howard David Johnson

“The Battle of Midway” painting by: Howard David Johnson

MIDWAY

72 years ago, Admiral Isoroku Yamamoto devised a plan to draw out the remaining ships in the U.S. Pacific Fleet.  To accomplish this, he planned to invade the island of Midway, 1,300 miles NW of Hawaii.  He would then have a base to attack the American islands.  The Battle of Midway marked the turning point of WWII in the Pacific – 4 to 7 May 1942.

Midway first hand accounts can be READ HERE!

Japanese ships

Japanese ships

Ground attack

Ground attack

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Midway map.

Midway map.

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D-Day

Gen. Dwight D. Eisenhower

Gen. Dwight D. Eisenhower

70 years ago, by sea and air, they descended on to a 50-mile stretch of German-fortified French coastline, 6 June 1944.  General Dwight D. Eisenhower would say to the men ______ “Soldiers, sailors and airmen of the Allied Expeditionary Force!  You are about to embark upon a great crusade, toward which we have striven these many months.  The eyes of the world are upon you.  The hopes and prayers of liberty-loving people everywhere march with you.”

Gallivanta sent us a link with information and photos by John Ford which can be found in the COMMENTS.   Click onto her Gravatar image to find her own site of Silk Ann Threads.   More additional information is continuing in the Comment section – so please read them as well.

Naval bombardments on D-Day

Naval bombardments on D-Day

 

Ground force landing corridors, D-Day

Ground force landing corridors, D-Day

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

D-Day landing scene

D-Day landing scene

Painting of D-Day beach, artist unknown.

Painting of D-Day beach, artist unknown.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Footnotes about D-Day

The last time an invading army crossed the English Channel: 1688
The nickname for the million-plus wooden poles planted by the Nazis to thwart an invasion: Rommel’s Asparagus
The code name of the plan to deceive the Germans about where the invasion would take place: Operation Fortitude
The candy supplied in the emergency rations for paratroopers was: 4 Hershey bars & one pack of charms 

 001001

 

 

Click on any image to enlarge.

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I only just learned that Chester Nez, the last surviving Navajo Code Talker, has passed away at the age of 93.

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Farewell Salutes – 

Leo Archer – St.Cloud,MN; US Army, WWII, ETO

Frank Braden Jr. – (105) – Coraopolis, PA; US Army, Medical Corps, Lt. to Lt.Colonel, WWII, 8th Armored Division

Stanley Burgoon – Chipley, FL; US Navy, Vietnam-2 tours, USS Saratoga & Amphion260637844_god_bless_them_all_xlarge

John Chakalos – Windsor, CT; US Army Air Force, 11th Airborne Div., WWII

Robert Donahue – Arlington, VA; US Army, Lt. General (35 years Ret.)

Warren Freeman – Washington DC; MGeneral (Ret.), Military Police Signal Regiment

William “Pete” Hall – Beaufort, SC; US Air Force, Lt.Colonel, pilot, Vietnam

Robert Hand – Born: Yorkshire, Eng.; Sherborn, MA; Royal Navy, doctor, (14 yrs) & Canadian Navy, (15 years)

Wallace Leask -Browns Bay, NZ; RNZ Navy # 3601, WWII, telegraphist

Paul Robertson – Maitland, FL; US Air Force, air traffic controller, (21 years)

Gordon Willis – NYC, NY; US Air Force, Korea, military photographer (famed cinematographer)

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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 June 5, 2014, in Uncategorized, WWII and tagged , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 66 Comments.

  1. Hello Mr Cox,
    the Battle of Midway painting that was done by Howard David Johnson, I would like to use it in my Star Trek fan chapter which is called the USS Midway. would that be ok I would definitely give credit to the Mr Johnson.

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  2. Its interesting to read and hear of the exploits of the military photographers and journalists of that time, they were right up front with all the action at all times,great war correspondents like Ford and Willis.
    Ian

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    • I used to have a fellow blogger here that was a correspondent during Korea. I haven’t heard from him since he started working on his books, maybe I should check into that and see if he’s alright. He even submitted his stories to me, which I posted in the Korea section titled ‘Correspondent’s View’. Thanks for stopping in, Ian.

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  3. Interesting trivia on those great personalities who served in combat.

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    • Yes, I was surprised myself by a couple of them and I had done an article Guest Post for Greatest Generation Lessons about the contributions of Hollywood during the war. I guess that doesn’t exactly make me an expert does it? No matter how much I research, there is always something new to learn! Thanks for taking the time to read.

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  4. We’ve seen some great footage on TV here (UK) with lots of veterans talking and visiting the area. Couldn’t get through to the Midway accounts.

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    • Thank you for letting me know, the link has been corrected. Obviously the people before you didn’t even try to see them, so thank for trying. If you care to read them, HERE IS THE LINK.

      Thank you again, Hillary, and have a great weekend. This site has sections for the ETO as well, if you are more interested in that.

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  5. Great article. I’m struck by how sterile and mathematical the charts and graphs are compared to the visceral beach carnage depicted in “Saving Private Ryan.” Thanks for doing what you do–I learn a lot.

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    • Does anything ever come across the way it is planned at someone’s desk? Reality, with an enemy shooting back changes everything. So glad you enjoyed the post, it took quite a while for me to decide exactly what to put in, there’s so much info for these 2 days. Thanks for coming by.

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  6. I thought you would like this post. Professor and I just watched film on the battle of the Pacific. In school, we didn’t learn much about it and we have now been to Hawaii. . . .Pearl Harbor was a wonderful tribute. Have you been there?

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  7. We have been watching the coverage of the D-Day memorials in France. What a collaborative effort of countries all those years ago. I understand the Americans suffered tremendous casualties and sacrificed so many. Canada of course had significant casualties at Juno and i wouldn’t want to minimize that.

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  8. I do not have an About page because none of this blog is about me – if it is all the same to you, I prefer to remain a non-gender voice simply narrating the research I uncover. I do my best to keep my own opinions to myself, if I can’t, I make it known that it is my conclusion. No apologies necessary, I am simply here to give credit to the men and supplement the meager historical content taught in our school systems.

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  9. Midway and D-Day – both well documented and well told stories that I’m very familiar with – momentous events, to say the least.

    Omaha Beach was a meat grinder!

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    • Thanks for reading, Eric. Sometimes these holidays may seem monotonous, that’s why I’m always looking for fresh info or novelty facts, like the Footnotes, to spruce things up a bit.

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  10. Have you read Chester Nez’ last interview in the Stars and Stripes? It’s from November; it’s brief, but is particularly moving now.

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    • Thank you for the link to it, Cindy, I greatly appreciate that. It shows the character of the Native American, despite all the discrimination they received, similar to the Nisei, they still maintained doing what was right was the only way. My father spoke in awe of both the Code Talkers and the Nisei in any story he told me.

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  11. Great post !!!
    That Yogi Berra quote is an interesting one. 😀

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  12. Great photos and research.

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  13. My blogging friend, Jamie graduated 8th grade and instead of a party we are all going up to MN in July for him to get a history lesson, drive a tank, and fire a 1919 .30 cal machine gun…thank you for your consistently great historical reads!

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  14. Great post, I just finished watching The longest day, Midway and Tora Tora Tora. They re some of my favorite movies as well as Gods and Generals and Gettysburg based on the Sharra books..:-)

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    • Would you believe I was given “Gods & Generals” on DVD and I haven’t had the time to watch it! I know, shame on me! There are so many great movies, but as in “Bridge Over The River Kwai” which turned out to be a good representation of the POWs slaving on the Japanese supply route, the bridge and all was a Hollywood fictional idea. Thanks for reading and your comment, Ed.

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  15. Had a friend (now passed on) who participated in D Day. The bravery, and the death, are almost unimaginable. The article on Hollywood Directors’ participation was fascinating. Thanks. –Curt

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    • I had read many a D-Day post from others and frantically tried to locate some different info – if nothing else – I do my best to TRY and be original (doesn’t always work out, but what the hay? Did your friend give you any stories you can share, Curt? Original stories help complete this web site.

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      • It was a long time ago, GP, so my memories are general. Once upon a time, I had a story he had written about his experience but that has long since disappeared. Interestingly, as a youth, he had been attracted to the Communist Party but had always maintained a strong love and loyalty to America… including fighting in WWII. None of that stopped the military from giving him a dishonorable discharge. Later in life, Congressman Matsui from Sacramento, who was a friend of his, worked through Congress to get the discharge changed to honorable. –Curt

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  16. Great post! Loved the 5 famous fighters. As far as Rommel’s Asparagus goes, I met a man who survived the glider assault. Terrible!

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    • It must have been very interesting talking to a survivor, have you done a post on that? I don’t recall seeing one on your site. Thank you for stopping in and taking the time read this post, Don.

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  17. I read Shaara’s WWII series which is where I first heard about Rommel’s asparagus. That man had the most amazing detail in those books. I wish I could read them again for the first time.

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  18. I was named after my uncle who was a land-based Marine pilot on Midway . He led a squadron out as Japanese planes approached . The Marines were flying obsolete Brewster “Buffalo” fighters and my uncle and his squadron were killed . The debriefing papers from a surviving pilot state that it was as if they were suspended from strings as the Japanese Zeros circled around . We were not prepared for war at the start .

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    • You definitely speak the truth with that statement, Dan. It is awful to know you uncle was put in that position in the first place. Everything had been downsized and once the war started, 85% of the produced materiel was going to Europe. Bad situation. Thank you for sharing your uncle’s story.

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  19. A very timely and appropriate post, gpcox! You never fail us! One odd fact to tie both historic events together?

    In summary, the SIS of the US cracked Japan’s secret diplomatic code called Purple in 1939. The ONI cracked the Japanese Imperial Navy code JN-25 completely before Midway. Because the Japanese codes were cracked, Nimitz knew EXACTLY what Yamamoto’s plans were in detail, down to diversionary attacks. Still, as you properly report, we were outgunned. Lady luck and the united fortitude of our young sailors and Marines (like Mr. Johnson) brought us victory.

    Because we broke the Purple code, we also had detailed Intel of the Nazi defences at Normandy thanks to Hitler himself and Japan’s diplomat, Baron Onishi. Hitler had provided Onishi a detailed personal tour of Normandy. Onishi, seeking glory, sent detailed communicae of the defenses to Tokyo which were intercepted by SIS. Subsequent Purple deciphers from Onishi were given to Ike directly to help him with his invasion planning. Onishi’s friendship with Hitler also allowed the US to know with high probability that aided by double agent Popov’s false intelligence provided to Germany that Hitler accepted the ruse: that the invasion will take place at Pas de Calais. General Marshall referred to Onishi as America’s best ally.

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  20. Quickie: Is the link to Gallivanta correct?

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  21. gp, Midway & D-Day, they don’t get any bigger than these!!!!!!!!! Great job here! My Dad’s 14 months were on Saipan. Bloody!!!!!!!!!! Phil

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  22. Great article, some incredible stories. Charles Durning gives a very descriptive account of D-Day on his IMDB bio, pretty terrifying. Will read more later. Sorry to hear about chester’s passing…RIP.

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    • Thank you for your comments, Mrs P., always a pleasure. Yes, Durning had an excellent record and it is well worth the effort for anyone to check into his bio.

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    • I just found your re-blog notice in the Spam folder, don’t understand how it got there. So, thank you for the re-blogging this post, JB, I appreciate it. The men deserve the recognition.

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  23. I have been watching the D-Day commemorations on BBC news. Very moving. Intrigued by the five famous fighters, I googled John Ford and came up with this fascinating article http://www.dailymail.co.uk/home/event/article-2563909/World-War-II-We-shall-film-beaches-How-elite-squad-Hollywoods-greatest-director-recorded-bravest-bloodiest-actions-World-War-II.html

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  24. Such an incredible sacrifice by so many but also what cooperation by the allied forces… Has there ever been such a united effort since? The painting by the unknown artist was fascinating.

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    • I do not believe so, not on that scale. The invasion of Japan would have made this look small – so thank goodness it never happened.
      I found the painting interesting as well.

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  25. My mind boggles at the scale of it all …

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  26. I’ve read books and watched movies about these two epic battles, and I can’t escape thinking about the courage of those soldiers. Going into battle where there is a very good chance you are not going to come back, or that you are going to come back wounded, but not questioning the fact that you are going. It’s hard to comprehend that spirit.

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    • I know what you mean. Even being afraid, knowing the possible consequences – and – going anyway! Thanks for adding you comment and for taking the time view this post.

      Like

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