Jim Nelson, 2nd Defense Battalion
"When we finally came ashore our 90mm Battery was quickly setup. We filled sandbags and enclosed our gun in a hurry. I was 17 years of age so they nicknamed me "Chick." I got the job of being the "Hot Sheller." My job was to throw the expended shells out of the gun emplacement as fast as they opened the breach. Needless to say it was very busy!!
The Japs came down at night to dump their bombs. I believe they came out of Truk which was supposed to be heavily fortified. Our searchlights would lock onto one and we would fore away. We had a Battery CP feeding info to the Battalion CP. We had an officer who loved to feed in baseball stats to Battlaion on the planes we had locked into. Needless to say our Colonel at Battalion was not too happy about that. It did break the tension.
We had a Marine from Brooklyn who looked more like a native than the natives. He latched onto a lava-lava and wandered down where the Seabees were unloading supplies, cases of beer also. He passed himself off and traded some native beads etc. for 20 cases of beer. They never did wise up until someone told them."
copyright 2003 Wheaton, Illinois
Created 7 September 2003