Thursday, August 23, 2018

Recently Read

Victory at Peleliu: The 81st Infantry Division's Pacific Campaign by Bobby C. Blair and John Peter Decioccio
I remember that at one time in the top drawer of my parents dresser were were my Dad's separation papers from his service in the U. S. Army. Dad served in the Pacific during World War 2. I'd pull them out occasionally and Dad would occasionally talk about his service. He spoke about it rarely. He mentioned his training at Camp Rucker, spending time in California and Hawaii, and service on Angaur Island and the Philippines. My Dad died before I was at a point I was interested enough to ask specific questions and some papers and photographs I distinctly remember were missing from my mother's papers after her death.

My Dad was apart of the 81st Infantry Division. Apart from that, I have more questions than answers. This books helps with some of them. One being why he probably didn't talk about it a lot. It does give me a fair idea just what he went through on Angaur. The writers had family in the 81st and wanted to give it's members their due. Other depictions of the fighting on Peleliu emphasize the Marines participation and minimizes the contributions of the 81st. In that the writers succeed.

If the book has a fault, it is that by the time it was written so many of the remnant of the 81st were, like my Dad, gone. The recollections of those remaining do personalize the contents but not nearly enough. If you are interested in military history give it a try but at 24.99 for the Kindle version it is a bit pricey.

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