As most of you know, I grew up in Washington, D.C., and spent my teenage years witnessing the newscasts and stories from the Second World War. General George Patton’s sister lived across the street from me, as did President Dwight D. Eisenhower’s naval aide, Harry Butcher, who lived next door to her. Admiral Ernest King, who was chief of naval operations during the Second World War, lived down the street.
I served as a naval supply officer from 1954 – 1956 on the USS Randolph, a World War II aircraft carrier, which fought boldly in the Pacific. All the senior officers and all the senior petty officers on board the ship were veterans of the Pacific Theater. As a result, I have always been fascinated with the battles and war stories that took place.
Certainly one of the most powerful modern day portraits of the war is being shown on HBO with their outstanding program called The Pacific. It portrays the story of the men of the First Marine Division, as they fought for control, first, of Guadalcanal and then Peleliu and, later, Iwo Jima.
The battle scenes are very realistic. We learn firsthand of the horrors of these battles. I am so impressed with the bravery of these young men who willingly sacrificed their lives for our freedom. The acting is outstanding and the message is compelling. These young heroes are indeed our greatest generation. The HBO presentation The Pacific surely helps us remember their courage and their sacrifice.
If you are as fascinated by the events of this conflict, The Pacific is a compelling story and definitely worth watching.
I’m Bill Marriott and thanks for helping me keep Marriott on the move.