James D. Underwood was born on 6 July 1920 in rural Casey, Illinois the son of George W. and Tracey C. McMillan Underwood. He married G. June Hutchcraft on 12 September 1947 in Arthur, Illinois. Underwood joined the US Army in July 1942 seeing combat on the islands of Guadalcanal, New Georgia, Bougainville, Luzon Philippines amd in the South Pacific of Operations with Company E, 145th Infantry Regiment 37th Division. He attained the rank of a First Sergeant and was awarded the Combat Infantry Badge, Bronze Star, and Distinguished Service Cross for valor and heroism in combat.
After the war he spent 30 years in the Health and Life Insurance business retiring from Mutual and United of Omaha in 1980. He passed away on 15 April 2012.
The collection contains 24 photographs of members of Company E, 145th Infantry Regiment as well as memoirs, documents, and duty rosters.