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I've seen him ever since

That's something that sticks with ya.

Transcription

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[Thomas Naquin] July 7, 2009.
This is Thomas Naquin with the National World War II Museum.
Today I'm with Mr. Herman Bailey.
For the record, sir, please tell me your full name.
[Herman Bailey] My full name is Herman Paul Bailey.
[Thomas Naquin] When and where were you born?
[Herman Bailey] Lancaster County, South Carolina, in a
little two-room shack. [laughter]
[Thomas Naquin] What year, sir?
[Herman Bailey] 1921, September 12.
[Thomas Naquin] What are your recollections
of the Great Depression?
[Herman Bailey] Well, we had-our knees
were out, the cheeks of our butt
were out, went barefooted. We walked to church.
We carried the shoes in our hands and then put our shoes on
when we got inside the church.
We had bread and molasses for breakfast.
We had milk.
We had to drink
a glass of buttermilk before we could get a
glass of sweet milk.
Just the kind of thing back in that Depression time.
In '29,
when the crash was, I was 8 years old.
I don't know what time of year this thing crashed.
I don't know that, but I think '29.
I don't know when the crash was.
But anyway, we worked on the farm.
When I was seven years old I was plowing a mule.
My brother was guiding it. [laughter]
Of course, at seven years old you just bust the middles out.
You don't get up close to the crop. You do it that way.
But that's when I started planting
was when I was seven years old.
I was the oldest.
We done that.
About the time I was 12 years old, I was full-time.
When I was ten years old, I was a full-time plant hand farmer.
Take a pair of mules
and plow a field or turn plow around and
around and around.
We done all that kind of stuff, plant crops, pick cotton.
We would pick our cotton,
and then we would go pick somebody else's cotton.
You take your cotton to the gin to get six cents a pound.
Then you owed it to the man you lived on his place.
We were sharecroppers.
They got most of the money and loaned us some money to get by
to the next year.
It was rough times back in them days.
That went on until I was 16 years old.
Then I got a job working at Mullins Lumber Company.
I was a carpenter's helper.
Before I did that a builder named Mr. Jennings hired-my
daddy hired me out to him for 75 cents a day and my dinner
from daylight to dark. That's the way it was.
That's when I was 16 years old.
When I was 16 years old we got our first radio.
It ran off a car battery sitting outside the window.
[laughter] It'd run out.
You had to go get it charged up and do it again,
all that kind of stuff.
We moved to North Carolina when I was eight years old, first
year to Statesville, sharecropping.
Moved from there over to Polk's farm at Hickory, sharecropping.
We were there two years, and then we moved over
to the sister place sharecropping.
We stayed there five years and moved back
to Lancaster on North Corner.
Atlantic was straight up towards Charlotte.
That was North Corner.
We were just three miles from that corner.
We lived there three years.
That's where I went to work outside the house, farming.
I went to work Mullins Lumber Company as a carpenter's helper.
Mr. Pladard, he raised me up
and made me a carpenter.
Then we finished up a hotel.
That's where I spent my first night when I got married.
He got [laughter] to where
he was sending me down to the package store
for a half a pint of Old Crow.
He kept on until he got me to take a drink.
One day it rained
at about 10 o'clock in the morning, and I quit.
I went to work in a cotton mill.
I worked there 1 year and 11 months.
That's when Camp Croft-Army base-
broke ground right at the first
of December, 1939.
I was making $14.10 for 6 days at the cotton mill.
I went to work over there at Camp Croft as a carpenter.
Of course, Mr. Pladard, he raised me up to carpenter, and I
got a job as a carpenter.
And—uh—
we worked there, and my first paycheck was $87 plus overtime.
We had overtime every week.
We worked in the rain.
In 56 days they moved
troops in barracks that we had built.
It was 56 days from when we broke ground
until they had troops in the barracks.
We ran all day.
Of course, I learned that on the farm worked hard for the day
from dark to dark.
Working wasn't my problem. [laughter] I could work.
Our bosses were from Mississippi.
They bragged on me.
They were going to adopt me and take me back to Mississippi
and all that stuff.
We finished at Camp Croft.
Then they asked us to go down to Wilmington, North Carolina,
to work on- to build a shipyard.
We went down to—
we started building in waves-
poured concrete to build the ships on.
We had to pour concrete way up high on your head and had it
taper down where the ships could sit up on there.
We built—we worked-I don't know how long we worked
there on the Cape Fear River at Wilmington.
That's where they built the ships and undock them,
and they'd float out in the river.
We finished up at Cape Fear River at Wilmington.
They asked us to go to Columbia, South Carolina,
at Camp Jackson. It's Fort Jackson now.
It was Camp Jackson then.
We built trusses for rec huts- recreation for the troops.
My job and my daddy's job- then the boss came along
and said, "Do you know anybody who can work like you?"
I said, "Well, I got a brother at home." He said, "Bring him in."
We made a crew. We built trusses.
We built more trusses than anybody.
They couldn't keep up with us. That's just the way it was.
We finished that, and we went on down to Camp Gordon
at Augusta, Georgia.
We met union people out in the street.
We got to join a union at Augusta, Georgia.
We got to go to the package store on the other side of the
street and get a fifth of whiskey and go in the front gate
to the first girl at the first desk
and give her a fifth of whiskey.
We joined a union like that.
From there we went down to the next girl, and she hired us to
go to work. [laughter]
We built barracks at Camp Gordon.
My superintendent there was Mr. Claude Welch.
We finished that job, and they asked us to go to Panama City,
Florida, to build Wainwright Shipyard
outside of St. Andrews- out past St. Andrews.
We built the shipyard.
We built the office building up there first,
and then we built the assembly building, big old building,
out of 12 x 12s.
Two stories and had a crane in it and all that stuff.
After we got the buildings all built, then I went to school for
two weeks to learn how to ship-fit.
I turned out to be a ship-fitter in two weeks.
My job on that Liberty Ship-
LSTs-was to send in
the cargo hold, the forward cargo hold.
That was my job. I had a welder- a girl who was a welder.
We put it together; we'd go
to the assembly building
and get a template. It was on the plan.
We would go get a template and lay on the piece of steel.
We would cut it and put it together, and she would tack weld it.
Then the welders would come in and weld it.
We got that done.
The crane would pull up there and pick it up and carry it
outside to put it on the ship and start all over again.
Then I stayed there. So.
September.
My third deferment came to an end,
and they told me I couldn't get another one.
I was living up in St. Andrews, me and my wife,
and we packed up
and got on the bus and went to Lancaster.
I checked in with the draft board.
I had went there six months before then.
They later told me they won't get another one.
This is just it.
I checked in, and the next morning they put me on a ground
bus over to Camp Croft, the place where I helped build
in December, January, February, and March.
I walked up to the recruiter who was an Army guy.
We were all in a line. We met him first.
I told him I wanted to join the Marines.
He said just step right over there.
He was sitting over there with his blues on and all of this stuff,
sharp as a tack.
I said, "I want to join the Marines." He said, "Sit down."
He signed me up and said sign that,
and I was in the Marine Corps.
But he gave me a ticket to Columbia.
I went down to Columbia.
The next morning they stood me out in the middle of the floor.
I had all my clothes off, and they looked at me.
One of them said, "Your back's crooked.
Does it bother you?" I said, "No, it doesn't bother me."
He said, "Hold your right hand on the Bible."
They swore me in on the 12th day of October 1943.
I said, "Well, my wife's expecting any day now."
He said, "We'll give you a 10-day pass."
So I went home and she's—
That was on the 12th.
On the 15th my son was born.
Seven days later I was going into gated Parris Island.
I'll never forget this old boy from Savannah, Georgia.
He got on the bus before we got-
he picks them up all along the road.
His shoe sole was loose.
Every time he made a step clickety-clack, clickety-clack.
The old sergeant said, "Hold up."
We didn't know halt and right and left and all that stuff.
We didn't know anything about that stuff.
He said, "Anybody got a knife?" One boy had a knife.
He pulled his leg back like he was shoeing a horse and cut that
shoe sole off, folded his knife up, and gave it back to him.
He said, "Follow me."
We went down to the warehouse to get all our trousers, shirts,
caps, and shoes.
A fellow with a goatee
looks at me and sends me a pile of shoes
over to—boots they called them.
A size 10, just my size.
He was a World War II-
he shot a mortar, and it went into
a smokestack of a Japanese ship and blew it up.
His name was Lou Diamond.
I didn't know who he was until I was out of boot camp
and found out that he was a war hero.
I got to meet Lou Diamond and didn't know who he was.
[laughter] We had our eight weeks of boot camp.
When we first started off nobody could just stay in step.
We were rolling all over the place.
In about three or four days we got the cadence,
just your heels hitting the ground. Do, do.
You just got in step.
By the end of three or four weeks we could march.
[laughter]
Well then, bootcamp out there on that parade ground—
We would go along the sidewalk.
The sergeant said, "Platoon halt."
Well, it kind of caught me by surprise,
and I was rocking on my feet like that.
The old captain jumped off the sidewalk and got my shirt
and twisted it all up.
He said, "The sergeant said platoon halt.
Don't be rocking back and forth."
When he got through with that, he straightened my jacked out
and stepped back up on the sidewalk.
[laughter] He was cussing me out, you know.
They couldn't hit you, but they could just twist your jacket up
and do all that talk and stuff.
One other time I'll tell you about.
We were marching on a parade ground,
and we were standing at ease.
Some Marines back behind me was talking—all recruits now.
"What should a Marine look like?
Well," one of them said, "you look like Bailey up there."
[laughter] I ain't never forget that one.
That was good.
Well, we go through boot camp, and we moved out there to the
rifle range in the fifth or sixth-the fifth week.
We'd lay down, and one Marine would sit there
and be on that-being on the rifle,
you had a thing and you knocked the block back.
And you'd shoot and squeeze it off, is what they kept telling
you, so you won't pull it off the target.
That went on for over a week.
Then we got out on the firing lines and shoot 200 yards
standing and 200 yards you were shooting sitting down.
Then we moved back to 300 yards.
You'd sit down and shoot, and then you'd stand up and shoot.
Then you'd move back to 500 yards,
and you stood up all the time up there and shoot 7, 8 shots.
When I qualified and made expert
at 500 yards, 1 bullet-
the stopper was just-half of it was
almost inside and just a little bit outside.
They called it I missed.
I got the second first ring.
Well, I made expert.
In time we moved back to main side after that.
We went in and got our dress greens and all this stuff.
We were as sharp as a tack, all of us. We just—
We marched in there.
Then time come-the eight weeks were up.
We got a ten-day pass. We all went home.
My hair had grown out a little bit.
You shaved your head when we first got there,
so it wouldn't look too bad.
Then eight weeks it's going to grow out a little bit.
I went home for ten days and came back to Parris Island.
They put me on the rifle range as a rifle coach-
rifle coach on the rifle range.
They gave me A range target 21.
I stayed there for almost ten months.
Then it was time to go overseas.
The fighting was getting bad over there and all that stuff.
We didn't know that. That's just how bad it was.
Well, we got— we got through with that.
I made expert.
When I got over in that tent,
I shot 320 that time, 306 in boot camp.
You get five dollars for shooting a rifle.
I got five dollars.
They shipped us the first two months while in boot camp.
I got five dollars a month.
Of course, that was a lot of money back in those days.
Then we shipped out from Parris Island on October 10
and went to Camp Lejeune.
I hadn't paid poker out of 25 cent limits.
We got outside of Buford.
I got in a poker game.
It didn't last about 30 minutes, and I was broke.
[laughter] I went to Camp Lejeune broke.
That's where we got our combat training up in Camp Lejeune
crawling under barbed wire and little things sitting
in a little ring and blow dirt all over you
and you crawling on your back and on your belly.
You had to keep your rifle where it would shoot
when you got to the other side.
But that's where I learned bazookas and flamethrowers
and how to throw a grenade and all that stuff.
We got all of that there.
At that time Elsie came down to stay with me too.
There was a guest house for ten days.
That's all they'd let you have.
She came down for the ten days.
Then I was back out there crawling on the ground again.
[laughter]
The time came to go to Camp Pendleton, California.
We boarded the train there, what I called it—
We got on the train on the Atlantic
and wound up at the Pacific in Camp Pendleton.
We went there—
we went to Los Angeles and changed trains
that went down to Camp Pendleton.
We was there for two weeks,
and then they called us to go board a ship.
They never told us where we was going.
That was sometime towards the middle
of December '44.
We got to Pavuvu-Russell Islands.
The island was Pavuvu where we were going.
Coconut trees and barracks under the coconut trees.
The clouds came, and it rained every day.
My job was making coffee on a 50-gallon drum.
[laughter] I had to gather wood
to start the fire and all of that kind of stuff.
In the meantime you would be going out
on marches and all that kind of stuff.
Then it came time to get aboard the ship again.
We got aboard ship, and we didn't know where we were going.
We rode around there six days.
We went to shore on Guadalcanal.
If you've ever seen pictures
of a Japanese troop ship, it'd run
up on the beach-a bunch of coconut trees.
We had dinner there. We had sandwiches at 12 o'clock.
We were out there six hours-just learned how to go down the ropes
and go back up the ropes.
Well, we—
that six hours we went aboard the ship
and rode around and rode around.
We spend just a little while. They call it Mog Mog.
I think it was the Caroline Islands.
It was a wrecked island and warehouses
of beer and all this stuff. You'd go swimming.
Three days there.
I went swimming and got fungus in my ear.
Got aboard the ship heading on to Okinawa. We didn't know it.
They told us we were going to Formosa,
going to invade Formosa.
Well, we— [laughter]—
We didn't know any better until we got
into the Yellow Sea.
It turned to go to Okinawa.
It came on. "Now here it is. Now here it is." All that shit.
"You're going to invade Okinawa, not Formosa."
That's the first we knew where we was going.
I'd been walking around the ship and walking around the ship
and sit down.
I got in a poker game, and I lost some money.
I went out on the deck and count my dollar bills, and the wind
blew all my dollars out in the water.
Doing all that walking around that ship I sat down on one
of those round things where you tie your rope around in port.
I was sitting there, and you could hear the waves at night.
The ship every so often turns.
Everybody turns at the same time.
You could hear the waves going away, and I was going to lean
over and see if I could see the waves.
My helmet fell off in the water.
I didn't have a helmet.
We were on there.
At night you couldn't sleep.
You'd get up there, and you'd sit down.
You'd watch the stars sitting on that round thing.
I ain't never remember the moon.
There must not have been a moon out during at that time
or something, just stars.
So we sit there.
You think about back home and working, and your wife
is at home, all this stuff.
That's the way I did it.
Then, finally on that last walking around
and walking around, I sat up there.
I leaned back again; I don't know if it was a tower
or operator was sitting up over my head or what,
but I'd just sit there.
That's why you could see tracer bullets going up.
They go up there, and they didn't hit nothing.
They'd turn over and go out and then go up and out.
That's about midnight on March 31.
And we kept on going. The tracers got brighter.
Every once in a while you would see an airplane go down,
hit the water, smoke rings.
If it goes straight in, he can make a smoke ring come up.
[cough]
If it went in on an angle,
it'd just fire and burn out on the water.
Smoke-you could see the went out.
Well, that kept on going.
The further you went into the night
the brighter the tracers got.
The brighter they got the closer you were getting
to where you were going to shore at.
And at daylight
the Japanese was shooting at us
from the shore with artillery.
The artillery shells was going in the water.
At first we didn't know what it was.
Somebody passed the word around and said it's artillery
coming from shore. It never hit anybody.
So we got on up there. You got 8:30.
The boats, all of the regular troops,
was going to shore. We were 32nd Replacement Draft.
And we was aboard ship.
They had the speakers on all around the ship
keeping up with everything going on.
All the first wave went in standing up.
No firing.
Somebody fell off the boat and broke his leg
when he got ashore. There wasn't anything going on.
The Japanese, that was the first time they'd done
that kind of stunt. [laughter]
They set up down south, and we didn't know it.
I didn't get to go in until 4 o'clock that day.
We went ashore on an Amtrak.
That was when I went on. I got going over the rail.
The Sailor boys were there to help us over
and get on the rope. I'll never forget it.
This old Sailor boy said, "Where's your helmet?"
I said, "I lost it." He stuck his on my head.
I went to shore with a Navy helmet.
[laughter]
So we went ashore— nothing going on.
Walked in a ways and went up on a hill
where you could see way out.
We could see ships burning and smoke
going up and kamikaze planes.
We didn't know what they were at that time.
So sometime during that next day we learned all that stuff.
Good many tracers that night.
Tracers just going every which way.
All day the next day
we stayed at the fox-I never left the foxhole.
I stayed there that day.
You could see the ships out there during the day
or those kamikazes blew them until they were smoking.
At night you could see the plane when it hit.
There weren't a whole lot of them that go through.
All our gear was on the outside of those carrier planes
and was shooting them down before they ever got there.
We didn't know that.
We didn't know those planes were going down over the ships.
In that first six days we learned a lot of stuff. [laughter]
All this kept feeding back to us, and we learned what was going on.
In the sky at night-I got a picture.
I got Okinawa. I want to show that to you.
Every night just like an umbrella with tracers.
They lit the sky up every night.
Daylight you could see little smoke streaks and stuff.
It didn't show up much at daytime, but at night
everything was lit.
That went on for a 100-
39 days rather from April to the 9th of May.
Every night that's what we lived with.
Some people got hit with bullets, not very many.
Just as we got ashore that first day
two Jap Zeros come right over our head
and landed on the Yontan Airfield.
We stood there and looked at them with our rifles in our hand
and never shot at them.
They had that little red thing on the side.
But we got ready from then on.
We didn't need to get caught flatfooted again.
They went up there and landed on the airfield,
the Yontan Airfield.
I was up there on the third day of April.
Me and Dunn from my foxhole, we walked up there and asked them
boys what happened to them planes.
He said, "Well, they landed, and the pilots
just jumped out on the ground."
A Marine shot them and killed them both right there
beside their plane.
I don't know what happened to the planes.
I never did find anything out.
But then me and Dunn was walking down by the south end
of Yontan Airfield, and we came to this cave.
A bomb had fallen right in the mouth of it-
big old crater— but you can't
really walk around the side. We walked in that cave.
That's what I told you about those pictures I picked up.
There were 2 Japs-homemade cots
are what they were laying on.
The first two had Japs on it,
and their bellies were all swollen up.
Three or four days laying there dead.
Done stinking.
It was early April, and it was kind of cool.
There weren't many flies, and maggots hadn't got into them yet.
When we got down in May we saw a lot of that stuff.
That's where I picked all that-that bomb, it made so much
concussion, and everything was just scattered all over
everything in there, blankets and everything.
I picked up 18 pictures.
I still got them.
Then I was late getting back to the camp in the foxhole.
It got dark, and we got challenged by guards.
We didn't even have the password.
They asked for the password, and we couldn't give it to them.
Finally they figured out we were Marines and let us go.
From then on we go the password every time we left.
One day I was standing there with my MI rifle.
They had this air raid going on.
This here Japanese kamikaze plane
had come over Yontan Airfield, and he dropped out of the clouds
just before he got to where I was.
Around them houses they had what
they called rubber trees-real slender.
The wind would blow them,
and that plane got to the top of those trees when he's passing me,
and I shot him twice with the M1 rifle about that far apart.
When it went in that plane, like a bluish/green flash
where that bullet went in the side of it, so I know I hit it.
I was sitting there with eight shots in an M1 rifle,
and I only shot twice.
But that plane went to the ship out there along us.
He was sitting broadsided.
He went too high, and the bottom of the plane
hit one of those trucks with the little canvas top on it.
[smacking sound] He hit the top of that thing,
and he went over like this into water.
His bomb didn't blow off. It didn't explode.
It turned the truck over. It turned over.
Two days later that ship had left, and there
sat that plane out there in the water.
The water went up across the canopy.
The right wing was up, and the left wing was in the water.
I decided I'd go down there and pull that joker out, and I
started out there.
They had an air raid and shrapnel
just like hail hitting the ground,
so I started running back.
I got to the hole where we'd been getting in at night.
It was filled up, and me and another boy was standing there,
and a piece of that shrapnel went through his thigh.
It never hit the bone but just went through the flesh.
He said it's just a little hot streak.
I don't know who he was.
I never saw him after that.
We unloaded ships.
When I wasn't unloading ships I was walking somewhere.
I was just gone. I couldn't sit down.
I'd just go, most of the time by myself.
One time I went walking all by myself,
and I just kept walking way back.
All the Marines sitting around the foxholes
and waiting to go the front.
I went way on back. I turned around and started back.
I heard these planes coming from the south,
the south end down there.
They came up over some trees and on down where I could see,
and this here plane was right behind us.
It turned out to be a Jap plane.
I don't know what it was a Zero.
I don't remember seeing that big old round thing on it, but that
Hellcat was right on his tail.
Just before he got to me [bbrrrttt]
he went over his right wing, went down,
and he went straight down below me.
If he'd gone that way, he would have got me, but he didn't.
He hit the ground.
He busted and smoke all coming up. I just kept on walking back.
I didn't go down there. That was kind of a scary time.
But I couldn't stay in the foxhole. I walked.
I was just doing something all the time.
Then that day came, May 9.
I happened to be at the foxhole, and they hollered for us to
gather up, called our names,
and they started alphabetically.
There wasn't but about one or two As,
and then they come to Bailey.
I was about the third one on the truck. You're going to the front.
So I got on the truck.
I got up on the left corner-on the left corner.
No seats. Just standing up.
There were four truckloads of us heading to the front,
and my truck was leading the bunch.
That airport down there called Kadena Airfield.
And just before— we passed Kadena.
We ran into 155 howitzers ship artillery pieces firing.
Next was 105s and then the 75s and then the mortars.
Then when you hear the rifles and machine guns,
you was at the front. There was somebody there.
When the truck stopped at the end of the road,
they would get us in and set us down where we was going.
My place was on the end of the key ridge kind of going down.
A three-man foxhole was already dug.
The guy-I took his place-
was Sammy Diego from San Fernando,
California. I learned his name.
He was the bazooka operator, and I was going to be the loader.
That's how I got done.
I didn't see him about a week and a half, and he was gone.
I don't know where he went.
But I loaded the bazooka, and every one of them fired.
[laughter]
[Thomas Naquin] What ridge were you at?
[Herman Bailey] When I went to the front lines,
I was 32nd Replacement Draft.
When I went on that truck I was in
the 1st Marine Division,
3rd Battalion, 7th Marines,
J, K, and L Company. That's who I worked with.
I would say the rifle companies-
the rifle was up front.
Then people like me was about—
were running about six, eight, ten steps back.
We dug in on the hill.
That way they were on the front line up here.
That's the way it went on until we got to Kakazu ridge—
stayed like that.
We went up-that was about 4 o'clock
on the 9th when we got there.
The Jap was killed down there.
I showed you that on that picture up there.
Killed next morning-killed Brown that night.
At about 12 o'clock we go the word to move up to go into-
it was just a valley then.
It hadn't been named.
I showed you on that picture why we marched
up there by that dead Jap.
We went all the way up and then turned over to the right
to turn down into Death Valley.
We got up there, and the ones who went in before us
couldn't stay.
They had run rocket trucks. They had six.
They always had these six rocket trucks,
and they shoot sixty rockets a piece.
They went off, and one of those things went crooked.
It just wobbled.
We stayed up I don't know how long waiting for them guys.
They couldn't stay, and they came back.
This one boy, they brought him on a stretcher,
sitting over in a little tent where the doctor was.
I recognized that joker from Camp Pendleton.
He stole my clothes.
I had a few words to say to him.
Just like I said when I was writing that that you read it,
if it had been a week later I wouldn't have said anything to him.
But I don't have anybody stealing my clothes. They won't fit now.
But they did.
But anyway, I felt bad about it
a lot of times just thinking about it.
I shouldn't have said nothing.
We went back to the same foxhole where I come up there
and spent the night.
We'd get a sniper bullet coming by at night every once in a while.
Artillery from back those guns we had passed never stopped firing.
They just kept firing continuous.
The Japs would shoot their artillery pieces.
They would shoot seven or eight shots, and they'd stop.
I didn't know that until sometime later.
You'd learn all this stuff when you're up there and people
telling you what happened.
On the 12th when we got over there-let me get back just think.
On the 11th we were up at 1:15.
We went off on this side-started off down to the valley before we
did, and then we went.
Just as we started, a machine gun, a 30 caliber machine,
got started firing up there.
When it passes you like that
it pops just like it's coming out of the barrel.
It makes little dimples in your cheeks.
Well, it was about
40 degrees or something like that down that hill.
We all just dived down that hill
and just slid way down on our bellies.
I wound up in a little bush that looked like a Cedar bush.
It wasn't but just a half a minute or something.
The old sergeant said, "Let's go."
We up and went on down and got pinned down there in a little
old ditch.
Up on that ridge, the one we were trying to take,
Japanese had those little knee mortars.
They sit down; they stick a thing between their legs
and put the thing in it.
Off here about 15 feet to the left one hit the ground,
exploded.
Then here come another half that far to where we were.
The sergeant said, "That's a knee mortar," and we all jumped up.
The three guys-he got shrapnel from the third one.
I was just past it.
That's why we went in a ditch.
We went in that ditch down there, and it just goes
on both sides.
We got in that water just
above your knees, and it was just blood red.
You didn't know it was water. It just looked like blood.
The 30 caliber machine guns when it hits you it just knocks a
hole through you, and then you just bleed.
All your blood runs off.
We went on up that ditch and found where that bulldozer had
pushed up a place up towards that hill.
Sammy Diego, now he'd been on Peleliu.
That was his second campaign. That was my first.
I was following him.
He crawled up that thing.
We got up there and raised up.
There wasn't anybody there but us.
We were by ourselves.
After a while people started getting out of that ditch and
just kept on coming.
All the way up that ditch on the side where we were
digging our holes.
The next morning a banzai charge
started up there I told you about.
We could hear it, but we couldn't see them.
They came running around that hill.
The old lieutenant-this is what was told to me.
He had his saber in his hand up there waving it in there
hollering banzai and all of those other guys following him.
An old boy had set up his machine gun
up on the back of that road.
He killed every one of them, just mowed them down,
except one of them.
One got hid in the ditch or something.
It didn't kill him.
They called Sammy Diego and me
to come up there with this bazooka.
Just as we got there that joker jumped up and started running.
They were shooting at him with rifles and machine guns, and we
shot 11 shots at him out of that bazooka.
Sam told me they were all duds.
They hit the ground and didn't bust, didn't explode.
The 12th one went over the hill where he went over.
He had to shoot as high as it would go.
It hit something, and it came up black smoke just balled up over
there.
On the 16th we moved out going over that way.
We got pinned down with mortars busting everywhere and us.
The way I said it was just like the world was blowing up.
That's where I got in a little ditch.
These two boys sitting at the machine gun
right above me up on a little hill up there.
One of them mortars fell right on the barrel of his gun,
and the loader was sitting on my side of the machine gun.
When it shoots it's in the back.
That mortar fell, and that fella
rolled down towards me, and the other guy went back.
It killed both of them.
That's one-if you read that thing, I had a little word with
the maker.
I got up and went on past those six rocket trucks again.
They were firing up on those hills
where we went. We went on up there.
We kind of went up to-I called it twin ridges is what I called it.
I don't know what the name of it was.
Anyway, we went up there, and we went across the road
over to the second one.
That's when the first Marine went across there a Jap shot at
him.
Then we started running, and he shot.
He never did hit anybody.
We got over there. It had been raining.
Tanks were out there.
They had one guy, but they had him tied on top of the tank.
His head was just like a loblolly.
He was going. His head was just sloshing.
He just hadn't died, but he-ain't no way he could live.
That's when I took my flashlight and looked in that tunnel.
I found them two Japs sitting in there.
They would have been burnt the day before-flame throwing tank.
They just sitting back leaning back against the side on two
here and ten over there. It was so hot.
I call it it just froze them in place, and they never fell over.
They just sit there.
That's when I knew how hot napalm was, and you're on it if
you're on a flamethrower. We couldn't stay.
We had to pull back, go back across that road.
Nobody got shot again.
Then we came back the next day and stayed.
The next day we pulled all and moved off-
I think it was the 19th or 20th of May.
We went down through this flat.
There were four tanks out there. We went off at 1:15.
You run, and you zigzag as you go.
Wide open fields,
shooting at you with machine guns over here all around them ridges.
It wasn't on the left; it was coming
all the way around the back over here.
When we went through there, there were 160 of us went over
at that place and went through those tanks and machine guns
were hitting those tanks and bullets were ricocheting off.
Artillery was going into the hills and mortars falling and
machine guns going.
That's the way it was from the 9th to the 18th
when I got off the front line all day and all night.
Flares all night. Artillery never stopped.
We got over there as good as this cliff about 25-foot house,
and we couldn't get on it.
Then we were piled up behind this thing, and the Japs were
throwing hand grenades down on those guys
up next to where the cliff was.
They didn't have any idea it was going to happen.
It just happened when they got up there.
I was shooting at them too over here to the left with my rifle.
I missed the first shot, went up about that high.
Well, I was an expert.
I wasn't supposed to do that.
I was shooting in that tomb to keep any Japs
on it from firing at us from there.
I looked back, and I could see those Japs throwing
hand grenades with their arms.
That's all you could see, so I started shooting up there trying
to hit their arm. I couldn't do that.
The time came, but we couldn't stay.
Word came to pull back.
Sammy Diego had got gone.
I was there, and his bazooka was laying there.
I don't know if he got wounded or what, but he was gone.
I never did see him again.
The sergeant put that bazooka in a hole where it blowed out like
that and hit it with a rock. It bent it in.
He told me to get going.
Well, I started running back.
An old guy about 45 years old out there throwing smoke grenades.
He was down at Parris Island when I was down there.
I never did know his name, but he was
an old leather face guy, and he was tough.
He was throwing smoke grenades. We went through the smoke.
When we came out of the smoke they started shooting at us.
One of them got to shooting at me, and I guess he was too far
away the way I figured it,
but he was hitting the ground around my feet.
I ran until they give out.
I had 12 bazooka shells and an M1 rifle
and M1 addition and my pack.
I give out.
I said well, "I guess you just have to shoot me. I can't run."
I just kept walking, and he never hit me.
I went back there and got in the foxhole and spent the night.
The next morning we counted and there were 90—
90 combat out of 160.
Some of them were probably where they could walk back when they
came on back because they got wounded, but there were 90
out of 160 on that 3-1/2 hours.
So, we was all shot up, and somebody else took our place.
They went back the next time. We didn't go back.
Everybody was all messed up.
From there we came out on a hill overlooking Naha.
I can't remember what happened between that place
on top of that ridge over there looking down.
Now it's just tore up. It's all blown up.
The buildings are all gone. The Yellow Sea was right out there.
That first day,
I called it like—
that thing was made like a fist, you like make a fist
and a little finger sticking out is what I call it.
I saw my first helicopter light on that thing.
I never heard tell of a helicopter before.
I thought to myself maybe
I'm seeing things, and that ain't even been built yet.
But that was a helicopter they had out there on that little
finger, little island that sticks out.
Then what do they call spigot mortars?
I never heard tell. I think it's what they call them
on that—
I forget what that peninsula's name is
sticking out in the China Sea.
Naha and the river come up in there
and that peninsula was next.
On the other side of that thing that spigot mortar started firing.
It did fire. Of course, it went off to the side.
That thing hit the ground, and it was the most awful explosion
I ever heard on Okinawa,
bigger than a 155 artillery piece.
It shot about five times.
When it left the ground it started squealing and then boom.
The next morning I went in a cave-I get ahead of myself.
I walked up there, and there's this hole in the ground.
I got my flashlight, and I'm looking in there.
There's a walkway going down.
I just kept on walking.
It was a natural cave.
And in that cave I found a flag, a Japanese flag,
and a half a gallon of alcohol.
They always laugh at me
because of the way I say alcohol.
Bloody clothes all over the place.
I guess the way I figured was it was a medical center,
a temporary place where they came and patched them up.
All the clothes were just blood everywhere.
It just so happened there wasn't no Japs in there.
[Thomas Naquin] By yourself? [Herman Bailey] Huh?
[Thomas Naquin] You went in by yourself?
[Herman Bailey] I went by myself.
The first time I went in a cave by myself was that one.
I just walked in there like I knew what I was doing.
[laughter]
But that night somewhere they found some orange juice.
They mixed it with the alcohol, and they got sick.
We were in a sweet potato patch—
sweet potato patch all up there.
They vomited all night long.
I was the only one who wasn't sick.
Didn't nobody bother us all night.
They got all that settled out, and they all got where they could walk.
We pushed off and went down to the-it's like a valley coming
from Naha from the river went up there, and the railroad track
went down through that valley-went all the way across the island.
I didn't know that then, but I know it now.
After I got off there that railroad went all the way to the
Pacific Ocean.
Out along that railroad track
they had all kinds of stuff like
shoes and pants and shirts and hats.
We called it like you bail hay,
piled hay-haystacks we called it.
That's the way they looked and they had tarps on every one of them.
All that stuff was in there.
We went on by all that.
When we went by we just pulled the tarps off to see
what was in the thing.
We went on up that railroad and went out on the other side.
Frank Barrett, I met him at Camp Pendleton
when we were there waiting that two weeks to get on the boat.
I run up on him when we got out up there.
He said, "Let's go in that cave over there."
Okay. We went up there.
We didn't post any guard. We went in.
There had been all that rain
that we walked in-you went downgrade,
and the water ran in the cave.
Them Japs-it was all like a loblolly where they run in and
out at.
We went down about halfway in that cave.
One went each way, and one went straight on.
We turned left and went left.
They had bunk spaces dug out on the east side.
They had one here and one here and a space, one here, one here.
First time I saw this cave I know of it, they had it dug like that.
There was one of these little old lanterns.
We call them eight-hour lanterns we had back in South Carolina.
You push the handle down and light it.
That thing was still burning.
The Japs had been there less than eight hours.
Barrett reached up to take that thing down, and he didn't do it.
He was leading the way.
We just kept on walking and walked down the low end down
there and went back to our foxhole.
About 30 minutes that whole hill blew up.
Dirt went everywhere.
So, I don't know whether that lantern had anything to do with it.
I got to thinking is that thing burnt the kerosene,
it would get lighter and lighter, so it might
have triggered something.
If he'd have taken that thing down, he would have triggered it
right then, but he didn't do it.
But Hill 57 in the old reading book.
Said Hill 57 blew up like that,
but that wasn't Hill 57 what we was on.
That was another one.
We got away from that one.
Then we went on.
Up until then we didn't see civilians
along the road until we got on past Naha.
We got up on a high ground.
I can't say it. I don't have it my book.
I could tell you what the name of that thing was.
We were kind of just a little bit past it on the high ground.
Then the order came for all the special weapons guys to burn a
bunch of straw-roof houses, the first we saw.
We burned all of those houses down.
The thing was to keep the Japanese from coming back in
and using them for sniper's nests.
So we burned all those houses down.
A boy got his knee blew off.
Those tendons back here were what was holding them on.
[Thomas Naquin] A sniper?
[Herman Bailey] A shell or something hit. I don't know how he got hit.
His knee was gone. All his kneecap had fallen off.
Well, they got their heads together.
They couldn't get any trucks up.
No way to get him out but carry him down to the China Sea.
They asked for volunteers. Well, I was one of his volunteers.
My job was on the left back
looking back as we went.
We went down by this little old rocked in village.
All the way around that thing-we found out
the next day the whole thing was rock.
We went down by that rock wall all the way down
to the rice paddies.
There's a big walkway all the way out to the China Sea.
The Yellow Sea. I don't know what they call it.
The China Sea.
We went out that walk, and about halfway out
this Jap was lying in a rice paddy
with his head back, and he had his helmet on.
Just lying there, and the water came up along here, like I said,
behind his neck.
Those guys had done gone. I was last.
I got to looking at that fella, and every time he would breathe
a little wave would go.
I said, "Yeah, you a sucker." I shot him.
I've seen that guy ever since.
Anyway, when I shot, they sent
the guy down on the stretcher.
The corpsman was walking along there beside him.
He had a tourniquet on his leg.
He adjusted that thing, and it was on all right.
The artillery shell, 77,
started shooting at the boat when they
came around the peninsula out there.
All the shells were going way over the boat.
We kept on walking, and the boat came on in.
Just before we got to shore the gun quit firing.
We got there, and the corpsman
went on with the wounded guy with his knee off.
This one guy was running the boat.
He was by himself.
I don't know whether he was Navy or CB or what he was.
Anyway, we put him on there, and the boat took off.
We started back.
The artillery piece started shooting again.
They were still going over the top of the boat.
He went on around the corner, and the gun quit firing.
We went on back and started going up beside that rock wall
by that little rock wall.
A Japanese stepped out into the walkway,
and those guys up front were surprised.
They didn't have time to shoot him. He went back in.
They went up there and looked around. They couldn't find him.
We went up and dismissed from volunteer.
The next day we were sitting up there, and this here guy-
I never saw him before.
We decided we'd go take a walk. We walked down to high ridge.
We walked in that village. We walked down.
We went down about 300 or 400 feet.
There is a big walkway
coming all the way from the right to
the left, and you have all of them rock walls.
Everything was rocked in about six feet high.
So we turned left just the two of us.
so we went to the first house.
We went in the gate, the rock gate and had a little old wooden
gate on the thing-went in the house.
It was a nice house, off grade.
We went in the house, and nobody was there.
We came back out and walked out into the barn.
The barn was on the inside of that rock wall too.
There lay a girl on her back in that hallway-
had like a robe on and laid back.
She had been raped about 15 times.
Rubbers were laying there all on both sides of her.
They had laid a hand grenade beside her head and blew all of this off.
Just a little bit of her face here was still on.
It was just done because there were no maggots in her, and the
flies weren't even on her yet. It just happened.
We started back out, and the other boy stopped at the gate.
I said wait a minute, I want to walk down beside the house.
I walked down there, and there was a Jap
under there with his shoes off.
From here there's a block wall on the side.
I couldn't see his face,
but that left foot, he had a white sock on it.
He done pulled his shoes off.
I pointed at the gate.
I said, "There's somebody under there."
We went on, and they didn't come after us.
We went on back
to the foxhole, and he told the sergeant
what I saw under that house.
So he got a bunch of Marines, and they went back down there.
He had one of them Thompson submachine guns.
They got under there and shot the whole thing full of holes.
There were three Japs up under there, and they never shot us.
The girl was lying out there in the barn,
and they just raped her.
We was going out of there.
I don't know whether I'll tell you this or not.
We went out through that rock wall and turned to the left.
There was a house sitting back out there under some trees with
a straw roof on it, just like we had burned the day before.
There was a man standing out there, and this boy with me, he
went to the right around behind him, and I went in front of him.
He was kind of a leather-faced, slim-faced fellow.
He was Okinawan I think.
But this girl came running out of that house
with a hula skirt on, barefooted,
no top, and run all the way up to me,
just came right up there.
That man said something to her, and she turned around and went back
in the house. Just like that she was gone.
We went on back to the foxhole, and that's when he told the
sergeant about the Jap under the house.
They went down, and there were three of them.
After that we got to seeing people
all along the roads.
I don't know how they were killed.
There would just be 30, 40, 50 of them in a bunch
laying there beside the road.
Women, small kids, old men.
There weren't any young men. It was all the old men.
This went on for three or four days
running into this kind of stuff.
The women-the men were all dressed.
But the women, somebody had pulled
their robes back, and they were lying there.
This is something I even said
maybe I shouldn't write this,
but this is something I'm seeing.
Those people were eaten up with maggots, and they just wiggled
and falling out the nipples and falling on the ground
and going back under.
That's the kind of war I was looking at.
That went on for about two weeks every day.
We got up with the Japs on Kunishi Ridge.
That's when all hell broke loose for about five days.
We got there on the 11th.
There's a reason why I know it was the 11th.
We went across at night, 3:30 in the morning.
But I walked in this sugarcane field.
I estimate it at 800 yards across.
I walked in this cane field, and a sniper started shooting at me.
He shot at me three times, and was hitting down around my feet.
I got behind a tree. He shot three times.
I stood a little bit, and I started running straight back.
I got back, and he didn't shoot at me anymore.
We went across that night at 3:30.
I was carrying a flamethrower.
The second time I carried one I think.
I don't think I carried one-this was the second time.
We went across that thing, and we got about halfway across.
A Jap went through the line behind me
and dropped a hand grenade.
There were two of them.
Somebody said something about a Jap.
I looked around, and the flares from the guns firing I saw that
there were two of them. He was kind of behind a bank.
They went up over that bank, and that hand grenade went off.
I never did know if it hit anybody or not.
I never did find that out.
We got on the other side, across that 800 yards.
A little old road went through there.
We got daylight.
We got over there, and all the rifle people
was way ahead of me. They were all scattered all out there.
I came up, and this old guy was sitting over on a white rock.
He was pouring water
from one canteen to the other.
I said, "What are you doing that for?"
He said, "It cools the water."
I got talking to him, and I said-
you could tell he had a brogue or something.
I said, "Where you from?" He said, "Australia."
I just joined the Marine Corps to get into fight.
I left him sitting there on that rock.
I don't know if he made it. [laughter]
That's the funny thing. "I'm from Australia.
I just joined the Marine Corps to get in a fight."
I went on.
And we was—
[Herman Bailey] Okay, we got- we got across.
We turned left going up on the top of Kunishi Ridge.
We went up there.
I just made 350-400 yards.
When we stopped, that's where I stayed
the whole five days right there.
That's my center place where I went working from there every
which way.
We got up there.
Sometime up in the day an old boy named Wydell,
Donald I. Wydell, we decided we'd take a stroll.
Went toward the cane field and turned a little bit to the left,
and there's a cave.
So I said, "You just stand guard.
I'm going to go on in." I went in.
About 20 feet there lay a Japanese rifle.
I pick it up and came back out.
It had been burnt. It was a pistol grip.
I guess it was white phosphorus.
Anyway, it was burnt.
I carried that thing with me all the way
to China and had a carpenter build me a box.
I sent it home.
So they were something.
Kunishi Ridge was just hell every day and night.
Always something going on.
People getting killed and wounded.
So we-we-
I was there at that spot for about five days.
I'd go from there.
Somebody need somebody to blow a cave, and I'd go with them.
It just could be J, K, or L Company.
It didn't make any difference.
I was going all the time.
But what made it so bad, you throw a 24-pound satchel charge
in there, and the cave didn't fall in.
That's the first one we ran into that.
All the others were dirt. They'd fall in.
But you blow those caves, and they just still sitting right there.
And all them caves-it turned out every one of those caves
just about went all the way through down through that ridge
out the other side.
Shoot, you could tell-yo throw a satchel charge in there.
If it was a dead end, you had more blowback.
When you didn't have that blowback you knew it went
all the way through.
You learn all this stuff when you keep doing all this like that.
So
the next day Wydell and me, we went by that cave
where I got the rifle and then went down and around.
We came to a rockslide, just like it slid over
about 15 feet just level.
It wasn't level, kind of downhill like that.
They had parachuted stuff in there for us
the night we got there I guess.
Them Japanese were carrying it and stacking it all in there.
Just as we got there, a Japanese come crawling out these three holes
dug, little square holes, level with those rocks there.
One of them started crawling out, and Wydell saw it.
"That's a Jap there!"
Before we could shoot him, he went back in.
So I had a crazy idea.
We went back, and I told
the officer up there. I said, "I got an idea.
"I want to take five gallons of napalm
"and tie a 24-pound
"satchel charge on the side of it and set it in front
of that hole and blow it in the hole."
He said, "Go ahead and do it."
So we went down there.
I carried that thing up there to the cave.
Wydell stood guard, and I set it up there.
I must have set it a little bit too far out.
That thing exploded.
Napalm went all over everything and set a bunch of grass
and stuff in there on that floor, the ammunition boxes,
and set that all on fire.
That can the napalm was in was gone.
It went in the hole or just blew it all to pieces or something.
I think it went in the hole.
Whether it killed anybody, I don't know.
We went on back, and that fire
burned down there until midnight.
Whatever was in those wooden cases,
the shell and the case in itself would blow up.
The projector would still be laying there.
It didn't blow up, but the shell would bust.
Those things kept busting and busting
and busting way into midnight.
Nobody didn't wreck us out about that.
The next morning we were sitting up there in my place.
This Japanese started down there, below where all that
explosion was, running through that cane field about 400 yards
over there.
So I grabbed the M1 rifle, and I started shooting at him.
I was leaning in too far,
and the bullets were hitting in the side.
You could tell where it hit.
The next one looked like it just went by his shirt.
The next one hit him in the belly.
He went down on his left knee,
caught his head with his right hand.
He balanced himself with his left.
That joker got up and started on. I was fixing to shoot him again.
An officer said, "You can't shoot him over and over.
We got people over there.
All that whole ridge over there was still occupied.
He kept on trucking. He had to die.
He just had to die.
His belly was shot out.
But he got up and left.
[Thomas Naquin] Adrenaline. [Herman Bailey] Something.
Anyway, that was a pretty good day really.
[laughter]
I was an expert, but I missed two times.
[laughter]
Well we-that day-
the next day I met Frank Barrett back
at Camp Pendleton, and we went in that cave
that the whole hill blew up. I ran into him again.
So we worked together.
We had several guys on J, K, or L Company
carrying a satchel charge.
And we went up toward the cane field and went east.
We came to a little old cave.
We'd throw 24 pound. It was a small cave.
Then when we got down to the big, old cave-
big, round hole.
Don't forget now.
From May 9 until that day
there was artillery going all day and
all night and flares burning all night.
It never stopped.
All of this was going on all at the same time.
Frank Barrett said, "Let's go in there."
Okay. Had a little ladder going down.
It went down five or six steps to the floor.
Barrett was leading the way again.
We went in there about 70 feet back.
This cave went that way,
and one kind of went over this way,
but we didn't know how far it went.
They had sandbags across the cave
with a blanket hanging down on them.
He said, "You got a hand grenade?" I said, "No."
I said, "I'll get one."
I went back to the thing, and one of them boys threw one down.
I walked down to Barr-\ just walked up to him.
He was turning with his left hand to get that.
I don't know what I had a right hand or left hand.
He was reaching to get that hand grenade,
and a Jap shot him from above.
It went down the back of his shoulder.
It was a blue streak about that long. It never hit the bone.
I said, "You go on," and I still had a carbine that day.
I shot 16 times. [gun sounds]
I was shooting up in there with that.
Now that bullet, whenever that guy fired it-
Japanese-
it's just like you hit the back of your hand
I guess on a 110 electric wire.
It just freezes you for just a second,
and it's so loud.
It was so loud shooting straight down at us.
I can just image what a 24-pound
satchel charge sounded like in a cave
that you get from a 30 caliber bullet.
Old Barrett got out, and I got out.
They had a stretcher and attended to him.
I dropped a satchel charge in there
down beside that rock wall.
All the pressure went in the cave.
Then I put another in there just for good measure what I called it.
I guarantee if that guy was still up there, he's dead.
[laughter] The concussion would kill him.
Anyway, Barrett-
that's the last time I ever saw Barrett.
He was from Bradenton, Florida.
We was-all our grandkids play baseballs, our boys.
They had a tournament down there. We went through Bradenton.
I stopped and got on the payphone, looked in the book,
and I found a Barrett name in there, so I called it.
Bless it was his uncle.
I told him I knew Barrett over in Okinawa and all that stuff.
He said, "Well, Frank came home."
And he walked-I don't know if he was married.
I never did find out if he had a wife or what.
He said he moped around here for a while
and went to California, Los Angeles.
He had a half-brother out there.
He said, "I ain't heard from him since."
They don't know what happened to him, and I never got
to see him again.
It's kind of a coincidence.
Anyway, back to Kunishi Ridge.
We had-I don't know if it was the 15th,
15th of June.
One company had me-
there were about five of us.
They were carrying satchel charges.
Up on Kunishi Ridge was an upper level,
and then it went up again. There were caves all up there.
They'd been having trouble sniping at them, so we went out
and started blowing those things going to the left.
It was on the wrong side for me to be throwing a satchel-
should have started down there and went this way, but I had to
go left-handed on those caves.
So we blew caves there a while and sat down.
I didn't know any of them.
They were talking to each other.
This boy sitting over here-
one sitting up there, and he had his
leg out and his knee up.
This one here said he wanted to go home.
This guy over here said, "You mean that?
He said, "Yes." He shot him through the knee.
It's a funny thing.
That bullet went in right there.
It blew out the side, but just
a little white blubber came up in that hole.
I guess it was marrow from the bone or something.
I never saw that before but just a little blubber.
They got the corpsman to come up there and doctor him up.
Those boys told him-the corpsman-that somebody, a Jap,
had shot him from one of those caves we hadn't blew yet.
I don't know what ever happened to that.
I often wondered what I should have done about it, but I just
kept my mouth shut.
Then the next day, we went on east along the sugarcane field.
There was an interpreter up there.
He sent word bacl for us to come on up there.
He was in a cave trying to get six Japanese to surrender.
He was just inside the cave.
I went around to the left-hand side, got one of those boys to
give me a satchel charge, and that boy, that interpreter,
came running out.
He said blow it.
I threw 24-pound TNT or C2, whichever one it was.
That thing blew up.
Then he told me what would happen.
He had six of them sitting in a ring
talking to them trying to get them to give up.
One of them stood up and started walking back
in the cave, and that's when he run out
and said blow it.
I blew it. I don't know if it killed one of them or none of them or what.
Anyway, it didn't cave in because it was rock.
[Thomas Naquin] What about-you said if the caves were connected
they would come in.
They would demolish a certain way. Could you tell?
Do you recall if it looked like they were connected to other caves?
[Herman Bailey] Just a hole in the ground.
You couldn't tell that. [Thomas Naquin] Okay.
[Herman Bailey] But you could take a 24-pound
satchel charge and throw it in there.
If you had a lot of blowback, it didn't go no where.
But if it was just mediocre-
go both ways-it went out the other side.
[Thomas Naquin] The concussion though.
[Herman Bailey] The concussion would just bust your ears.
That's the cave I blew-the last one I knew there were Japs in.
That's the last one I blew was that one.
We went on back.
I think that was on the 16th of June.
We went back to the place where my holdup place was.
Wydell-
I don't know why we always went the same way, never went the other way.
We went west.
We decided we'd go down by that cave where the rifle was
and where the rock slide.
We went on past that, and we were hopping from rock to rock.
We got down to the edge of the cane field.
That's where the sniper was shooting from.
Everybody that got in that cane field-the way they were talking
he must have killed 1,500-I mean 15 people not 1,500.
They couldn't take him out.
They had to put him on tanks, drag him up to the tank, and put
him through the bottom and send him out.
That guy, he was just hitting everybody.
But we walked up on this big old rock.
I got a picture of that there, a drawing I drew.
Here is a rock cliff over here, a walk space, and this rock.
He had been chiseled in. The cane field was over there.
Wydell said look at that gun barrel sticking out of that
crack up there.
That Jap that loaded it in about two seconds
he blew his head off.
This guy, the sniper, lying in that sniper's nest,
he hit his head with a- we could hear it. Bam.
That's the way they set the hand grenades off.
Just five second it went off, and it blew
the whole side of his head off.
He was laying-feet were down towards us, and his head was
towards that hole. He was lying on his back.
He had put that hand grenade up here with his left hand, and all
that stuff just blew up all over the cave up there.
Where his brains sit, it blew right down
to he had two little slots sort of where
this brain and-you got a double brain.
[Thomas Naquin] The hemispheres.
[Herman Bailey] We walked up in there,
and that guy was laying there.
There was smoke coming out of his head.
But those places where that brain is sit were just as clean
if you would have wiped it out with a rag.
It just sucked his brain right out.
But there his rifle was there beside him.
He killed I don't know how many.
We walked and left the whole thing.
We knew we would have got ourselves in a jam if he was
allowed to walk out.
They could have killed-either one of them could have killed both us,
and still they decided to kill themselves.
[Thomas Naquin] They were getting desperate.
[Herman Bailey] Well, what they did-we get that all along.
They'd leave one Marine- one Jap-
back in a cave, and that was his place
to stay until he died the way I understood it.
That may not be exactly right.
This guy was in the sniper's nest,
and that boy's down there loading the gun.
They stayed there and killed both of themselves.
We went on back.
I guess you're saying I got nervous that day.
I might have turned white. But anyway.
That was a bad situation, and we walked back and got out of it.
The next morning, that was the 17th of June, we moved off
the back of Kunishi Ridge to the next place back there.
They were-
the colonel, our colonel, was standing down there
at the edge of the bushes saying,
"You go that way, and you go that way."
There was a great big old boulder rocks out there standing up way
higher than your head.
They were just like they had been placed there.
We walked in there.
There wasn't anybody firing at us or anything.
I had to do a number two, and I went out there
in front instead of going back.
I got down beside a rock, dug my little hole, and a Corsair came
from the right side and strafed right down to where I was.
I was behind a rock. [laughter]
That's the last scary thing I got into on Okinawa.
I moved on back, and we left-
moved off there between 12 and 2 o'clock.
The 6th Marine-I mean the 2nd Marine Division
relieved us off the front lines. We marched back.
We went back about 100 yards from that sniper's nest.
This is what I said there myself.
I said that guy was still laying there,
flies putting their eggs
in his head, and the maggots ate him up.
I bet there's still a greasy spot there where they ate him up at.
That's what I was thinking.
We went on back a good ways and dug in around a round-top hill.
That hill had been pushed all the way around it.
It's like it had been pushed off, and caves went off of that.
A sniper-we were there the first night.
They had a big toe and other toes.
The shoe had a toe-a big toe.
One of those jokers dug himself out of that thing on the side
where we were and went around
and got down to a stream of water.
Somebody down there shot him, but he came out of that cave.
It was already blown shut when we got there,
but he was still in there.
We stayed there, I think, five days.
Back in Pavuvu, Russel Islands-see the 1st Marine
Division had been to Australia.
This guy had a 32-1/2-he told me it was a 32-1/2 cent piece
silver coin.
I got it off of him.
I was sitting there on-had me a little piece of wood hitting on
that corner with a GI spoon.
The coronel had his tent right above me.
He came out of there and said,
"What in the world are you doing?" I said, "I'm making a ring."
He came down there and got the spoon and the ring and tap, tap,
tapped on it. He just got up and left.
So I made me a ring.
You cut the inside of it out until it fits your finger.
I wore it on this finger.
Sometimess-I wore that thing in 1980s.
It just fell apart.
I never kept the pieces. [laughter]
[Thomas Naquin] What about POWs?
Did you take any Japanese POWs?
[Herman Bailey] I told you-we took prisoners but older people.
I have a picture out there of two of them.
That's the only two I saw prisoners, and both
of them-one of them was over 40 years old or around 40 and the
other one was like about 30. I'll show you the picture out there.
That's why I said the older guys.
They had a little-
they felt something for their life instead of just giving it
to the emperor. I think they'd die for the emperor.
The young guys, they would kill themselves.
You didn't see any young people that surrender until the last
like the 20th and 21st.
Got them down there at that end of the island.
Let's see, that would have been the south end.
I didn't how many we took prisoner.
Last week on TV
they had one of these here programs on the History Channel.
A whole bunch of these young guys give out
on the south end of Okinawa.
The old general killed himself.
He killed himself with a knife like that.
General Buckner-I got off the front line on the 18th.
He was up there on the 20th or 21st, and an artillery shell
hit-it was all rocks down there.
A piece of that, a rock hit him in the chest in that explosion
and killed him. General Buckner.
Oldest general killed in the Pacific.
At that time I didn't know he was dead until we got up to the
north end of the island and found out about it.
[Thomas Naquin] Where did these older Japanese surrender again?
[Herman Bailey] When I saw him, it's
just like they're sitting in that picture out there.
One was sitting up there leaning against the house, and the older
fellow was sitting out there in the field-had a bandage on his arm.
I think that's right.
Just sitting out there with his legs crossed sitting
in an open field.
I don't know how they got there.
I just happened to see them there.
[Thomas Naquin] What happened to-
this is earlier in the campaign around the rock wall.
You remember you had this Okinawan girl
come running at you and then she turned around.
[Herman Bailey] That wasn't a rock wall.
That's the rock wall village is where she was.
This was just outside the village. They had a gate.
It wasn't a gate. It was just an open place.
We had come over here and went in that way. We came in back.
We came and turned to the left and go in there
to the grass roof house there.
The day before in the morning we burned all of them houses.
Then they needed volunteers to carry that guy to the China Sea
who blew his knee off.
We came back, and this was the next day.
Me and this boy, we decided we'd walk and went in that village.
The Jap was under the house and the girl in the barn
with her head blown off.
We came out of that village and here came this girl with a hula
skirt, grass skirt.
I called her a ten.
That was way back before they had tens.
[laughter]
But anyway, she came right up to me, and that man said something
to her, and she flipped around and went right back in the house
just that quick.
[Thomas Naquin] How much contact did you have with the native
Okinawans because a lot of them were afraid of the Americans?
[Herman Bailey] There's one thing I skipped over.
Let me tell you this.
We wasa in this valley going up, way up,
and there was a spring up there.
It had three spouts coming out the side.
When we got there, there were about over ten Marines in there
all stripped off pouring water over them with the helmets.
You'd catch from that pipe and take a bath.
So me and Bennett, we were kind of buddies that day,
we walked in there.
We pulled all of our clothes and packed them in a spot and went in there taking a bath.
These two Okinawan women, they must have been 25 or 30 years
old, they came from up that valley and walked right in there
where we were.
Each one of them had two buckets and a stick.
The Marines just stood back.
The filled their buckets with water, got it on the stick,
and put it on their shoulder and walked out.
Nobody said anything. Nobody touched them or anything.
I wrote down on there what can you say for the Marines?
We were all gentlemen that day.
That absolutely happened. I was standing right there.
This is where Vince and Bennett and I got a call to go down
with a flamethrower and burn a cave down there.
It was about 200 yards down there.
We went on down.
We got our bath and got our dry clothes on and all that stuff.
We got down there, and this woman
and a little girl had come out of that cave.
There was an interpreter right inside the thing.
He had talked those two to come out.
This woman brought that little girl out with her.
She was there, and a bunch
of Marines were standing around there.
The little girl was lying down, and the woman was standing up.
The little girl looked like she had smoke and something.
That's the way she acted like. She couldn't breathe right.
Then about that time that interpreter
came out and said, "Burn it."
I turned on the two valves and hit old Bennett on the butt.
He struck the match and just walked right up there
and burnt that cave up.
That interpreter, he said they were women in there.
We didn't know that.
That kind of sit-will stay with you as long as you live.
Anyway, just a rough saw-me being in construction I knew
what a 2x4 sized to size.
A rough saw 2x4 leaning up on the right-hand side of that cave.
Bennett, he moved that thing, and it hit the 2x4.
It came back and took all the skin off
all the way up past his elbow.
He just kept on firing.
But all that skin had come off.
I didn't see Bennett anymore until we got up north
of Okinawa.
I guess I messed it up.
That was kind of-that's something that stays with you
the rest of your life.
Women in there. That just grabs you.
[Thomas Naquin] Why did he order to burn-the interpreter?
[Herman Bailey] There were Japanese soldiers in there.
[Thomas Naquin] Oh, okay. [Herman Bailey] Yeah, that's why.
There were Japanese in there.
I don't know if the women were Okinawan women
or Japanese women. I don't know that.
But that woman and little girl were Okinawan.
[Thomas Naquin] They escaped, right?
They escaped. The woman and the girl.
[Herman Bailey] They came out the cave on their own.
The interpreter talked them out.
They were out there on just a little knoll like that.
That little girl was lying, and the woman was standing
by her head.
They were all dressed.
The sniper's nest and burning that cave with the women in it,
burning that cave,
and blowing the cave up with six Japs in it, those are the kind
of things that kind of stick in your mind.
[Thomas Naquin] But later on you heard about the mass suicides of
the Okinawans?
[Herman Bailey] They had a cliff down there.
I've watched this on TV a lot of times.
What I can never figure out is here are these two women,
about 25 or 30 years old,
walk right in there with 15 naked Marines,
filled their buckets with water,
put in on their shoulder, and walk out.
They weren't afraid of us.
That I don't understand.
But them women come down there and throw their little babies
off and jump off behind them.
Then the next general. He was in the last little rock.
I understand there was running water in that cave he was in.
He came out on a little ledge,
and that's where he had his little cloth.
He'd lay it down there and killed himself.
[Thomas Naquin] The native Okinawans didn't get the memo.
[Herman Bailey] That's a puzzle there.
Those two women could come in there with 15 naked Marines
taking a shower, or pouring water on their helmets, but they
just stood back and filled their buckets and left.
I ain't ever forgot that one. [laughter]
I don't know.
I got off the front lines on the 18th of June.
We went back to the holding place for five days.
That's where I made my little ring
out of the 32-1/2 cent piece.
We just sat around. I didn't wander off that day. I just stayed.
I didn't have no desire to go no where.
I just sat there in my foxhole all that five days.
I'll tell you one more thing.
Old Eskwith, that's my buddy
from East Hampton, Massachusetts.
The fifth or sixth day in Death Valley he got shrapnel in his
neck-sent him back to Guam.
He came walking up the hill while we were sitting there.
The first thing he said-I'll never forget it-
he said Paul Bailey, I knew you would still be there.
I drove all the way to East Hampton, Massachusetts,
to visit him.
Drove up there, and my wife went with me.
Then I came through Philadelphia, stopped through and saw my
brother, and came on back home.
[laughter] He lived up there.
He met a girl from up there in Pennsylvania.
Then we went down-on the 5th day we were getting on the truck.
He showed a- I said what it was-
he had a little slanted back on the side, weapons carrier.
I was getting on that truck from the left back bumper.
A Marine was getting on behind the right back wheel, and he
brought his-I reached up and caught the side
and pulled myself in. [cough]
This Marine was getting on behind the right back wheel.
He brought his M1 rifle over, and it went off and went through
the side right under my arm.
[cough] Excuse me.
Wasn't anybody standing over there. It didn't hit nobody.
Dust flew out of that side where he hit it.
Nobody said a word.
[cough] Then we went on down to the seashore.
LSTs are what I worked on in Panama City, Florida.
We walked on that thing.
It was an LST made in California.
We went up north on an LST.
[laughter] We were up there-let's see.
That was in June.
We got up there sometime in the last of June,
and we built our tent city.
We were going all kind of weapons
and everything to go to Japan.
We went out and cut our own trees-long, slim things-
and make our- put our tent on it.
I was a carpenter. It kind of suited me.
I could build that.
Wydell was in the tent with me.
The bulletin board was just about 25 feet.
Every morning we could walk
over there and read the bulletin board.
Then we were all getting ready,
and the biggest invasion in history
was supposed to come off in November
the way I understood it.
Estimated about a million Marines and Army and Navy, and
everybody get killed in that invasion.
Truman-he was the first president I voted for when I got
back home-dropped that bomb.
On that bulletin board the next day-
they dropped it on the 6th
and this is the 7th-dropped a bomb on Japan.
There is so much dust and smoke we can't tell how much
damage it did.
Three days later they dropped the one on Hiroshima.
That was Nagasaki I think.
They dropped the one on Hiroshima.
The bulletin board said the same thing.
Everybody got drunk on the 17th.
Wait, I'm getting ahead of myself. The 17th.
They had offered on the 10th
their terms of surrender, and it was turned down.
They offered again on the 17th unconditional surrender.
Peace was signed on September 2
on the deck of a battleship in Tokyo Bay.
That's one of them-
the bulletin board said
the 1st Marine Division will be going home.
Ten days later another one on that bulletin board said no,
you're going to China and disarm the Japs and send them home.
That was a mad bunch.
[Thomas Naquin] I'm sure.
[Herman Bailey] That's the way it was.
We arrived at Taku Bar on the early morning of September 30.
We went down that rope ladder
and got on a boat and went ashore.
They were Japanese out there-Chinese-dipping up bread.
The Marines would throw it in the river.
They were dipping it and eating it right there.
They were so hungry I guess.
We got aboard the train and went up to Tientsin.
We were up there-
I don't know how long we were up in Tientsin,
a week or something, before we got a train.
Then we went up to Tianjin.
We went up there to disarm the Japs.
See, the KMA,
the British coalmine, they called it KMA Coalmines.
We were guarding the KMA Coalmines,
and this is where we went out.
The first time we went out on a truck
to disarm Japanese, we went to an airport.
I don't know where it's at from Tianjin.
We got up there, and we started
on the end of the runway where the planes take off.
They had this big old dug like a round well.
Six Japs were lying on the floor-that's how big it
was-asleep.
Somebody hollered at them and woke them up.
They came out and left the rifles in the hole.
They came up there and lined up in front of us.
One of them said something.
They had their hands on the side.
The bowed to us all the way over and stood back up.
[laughter]
I didn't think about this too much.
All this time I never heard anybody talk about
the Japanese bowing to you.
But the 1st Marine Division
done the first fighting in Philippines
out in the zones and all that stuff.
That's where I went to Bell News in Augusta, Georgia.
I fell in the love with the 1st Marine Division.
That's what I wanted.
By choice when we got to Russell Islands
that's what I got the 1st Marine Division.
[laughter]
[Thomas Naquin] So the Jap-you didn't have any trouble
with the Japanese, disarming them, at all?
[Herman Bailey] They just like we were the king
and the queen, and they bowed to us.
Everything we asked them to do they did it.
You tell them get on the truck. They got on it.
Take their rifles and put it on another truck.
That truck would go get a load and take them in.
They took them into Tianjin somewhere.
I don't know where the holding place was.
Anyway, they got a-I think they took them on a train and got
them down to the ocean somewhere.
I understand they went home
in an LST,
same type I worked on [laughter]
at that Panama City, Florida.
[Thomas Naquin] Did you have any interaction with-
what about the Chinese people?
You said that they were hungry and eating-
[Herman Bailey] They were just-everything we did-now, when
we got to Tientsin we got in a parade.
The old Marine book said it's nothing like any division in the
whole United States Army, Navy, anything-
had a parade in Tientsin, China.
They were ten deep on both sides of the street.
They just wanted to touch us.
You could stretch your hand out and just do that.
One of the trucks behind me as I understand, I didn't see it,
they pulled the top off the truck.
We were the best thing they ever seen.
[laughter] We were ding how.
That's what they-ding how, and they stick their hand up.
Marines was ding how,
and the Japanese were ding bu how
with the little finger sticking down.
We heard that all day.
But we had-that was a parade
like no other according to the old Marine book like that.
No other division has ever been treated like that.
But I was-I believe
I was the first one that the Japanese bowed to.
Came up out of that round hole and lined up.
One of them said something, and every one
of them bowed just like that
and stood up.
We told them to get on the truck, and they got on the truck.
We never had any trouble out of them whatsoever.
[Thomas Naquin] What about-did you have any run-ins
with the communists?
[Herman Bailey] Well, I got a picture
out there of me with a flamethrower on my back.
It was taken while we were standing there.
One of our trains got shot up down there with the Chinese
communists.
We were ready to get on the truck and go down there to get
the train loose, and they sent- a Corsair went down there
and strafed up and down both sides of the track,
and the train moved out. We didn't have to go.
They were five Chinese officers from Tientsin, China.
They had a colonel, a Chinese colonel,
woman, beautiful girl,
spoke five languages.
She sat up at the front of where we were.
I was on guard duty. I never got to talk to her.
Some of the Marines sat there and talked
to her all the way to Ching Wang Tao.
I didn't never talk to her, but she was starting
to laugh and go on and was fun.
Those five officers sat back around a table on that car.
We were their guards going to Ching Wang Tao.
We left them up there and came back.
All along that railroad track- I got pictures of that there.
The Chinese communists just blew the bridges up, blow up trains,
engines, and all-but the train we were on, they never bothered.
We didn't get shot at or anything.
I have pictures of all that stuff.
Maybe,maybe my angels were with me again.
[laughter]
But we had a pretty good time in China.
We disarmed the Japs and put the stuff in warehouses.
Then we had to guard the warehouses
to keep the Chinese from stealing it.
They dug a hole in the back of it-we were in the front, and
they were taking it out the back.
I don't know whether it was communists, probably, doing it
or something.
We stood up, and a Chinese wedding came along.
I ain't ever seen something like that before.
We came down the street with all those old dragons
and all this stuff walking
and that old Chinese music going all over.
I don't know what it was.
They came by our warehouse going someplace.
They had that thing blowing fire out of the mouth
and all this stuff.
I got to see a Chinese wedding-part of it-a parade.
Then those kids over there, Chinese kids,
all of them had a split-
they didn't have diapers or anything just open.
They'd squat down.
They could just do their business and stand up and go.
You see that all day every day with the kids like that.
But the Chinese were good to us.
The Japanese were polite, bowed to you.
They went home, and then we went home.
[Thomas Naquin] How long did you stay?
[Herman Bailey] We got off at Taku Bar according to the book
the 30th of September.
That was 1945.
I left Tientsin at the railroad station
on February 9, 1946.
It took us two days to get down-
it might have been blowing up.
We went down to where we come ashore, Taku Bar.
That river emptied into the ocean.
The settling just kept-it was too shallow.
The ship had to park way out.
We had to go out in a boat, and that was the last rope ladder I
climbed going back on that ship.
We left China.
We went by the low end of the Chinese island.
There was a volcano erupting. It was running down the side.
On the left-hand side cars were going along-it was just after
dark when we got there-with their lights on.
We didn't see any more lights until we got to San Diego.
[Thomas Naquin] Going back a bit, in Pavuvu before you hit
Okinawa, did you go to any USO shows?
[Herman Bailey] No. [Thomas Naquin] Okay.
[Herman Bailey] I went to one on K. Kaizer.
He had these girls in these little short things
and the lights on to make it glitter.
He had three or four girls, and they danced on the stage.
That's the only one I saw.
Bob Hope didn't come over there.
[Thomas Naquin] I was going to ask you if Bob Hope was there
because I know he went to Pavuvu I believe.
[Herman Bailey] I don't think he came to Okinawa.
I don't remember hearing anything about it.
He put on a good show what I saw on TV and stuff.
[laughter]
[Thomas Naquin] You carried a flamethrower.
You also carried a bazooka, correct, on Okinawa?
[Herman Bailey] I carried the thing, but I never fired it.
I was trying to get that-I loaded it,
and the other guy shot it.
The flamethrower, I've carried it, but I never fired it.
I turned the valves on, and somebody else would do it.
[Thomas Naquin] Okay.
[Herman Bailey] In the woods, he fired in that cave with the
women, I didn't, but I was part of it.
[Thomas Naquin] You carried a lot of satchel charges.
You obviously couldn't carry all of it. You had-
[Herman Bailey] This is the way that worked.
J, K, and L Company-
the rifle man is up front on every push.
I was back here.
When we stopped I was still back there.
If they needed a cave blown, J, K, or L, they sent somebody,
and the carried the satchel charges.
I didn't have to carry them.
I had my little carbine when I was doing that.
I had a carbine then.
They carried it to the cave, and I took it
and threw it in the cave. [laughter]
[Thomas Naquin] That's a lot of caves.
[Herman Bailey] It's just all day every day.
There ain't no telling how many people were in there.
I don't have no idea.
I don't want to dwell on it,
but I'm sure there were Japs in some of them.
I know there were six in one.
Interpreter said he was.
I threw that thing in there.
In ten seconds it went off.
When he came out the door in the mouth
of that cave, I threw it in there.
I don't know how far it went back, but you throw it and it
slides good if you don't have any blockage or something.
It'd just slide way back in there.
But anyway, that's the way I did it.
I never had one to fail except that one.
I crawled in that tomb, and it moved in off the fuse.
All of them fired.
The bazooka at that time, we shot it.
All I had the word was Sammy Diego said the first eleven we
shot was dead, were duds.
I don't know that.
I was busy loading, and he was watching where they went.
Anything you want to ask me, I think I got it up here.
[laughter]
[Thomas Naquin] Did the war change you?
[Herman Bailey] Well, I came home,
and I got a job.
I got home on a Saturday night.
I went to work on Wednesday.
My toolbox
is in Mom and Daddy's rail house
right where I left it.
I just had to pick that thing up and go to work.
That I think helped me.
I was busy and thinking about what I was doing.
My wife said I kicked her out of bed at night
and be grunting and going on,
but that's the war did that.
I was doing that in my sleep.
There's one thing that always puzzled me.
We would have-in my dreams
we would have a battle with the Japanese.
It was always on a hill with bushes,
and it went down like that.
Every time I dreamed
about fighting the Japs it's that same dream.
We never did get it finished. We never did win.
That's one thing that somebody got to tell me that knows
something about dreams, but that's happened many a times.
It was always the same hill
and the people coming up there after us.
We were shooting them and hollering
and shells going and just everything.
I was never on that hill. [laughter]
I was never there. I don't know why that happens.
I don't know. [laughter]
I-
in the beginning I didn't worry about the war.
I could think about it.
That Jap I shot in the rice paddy.
I went to church, and they welcomed
all us guys as members of the church.
That's when it hit me. I was sitting in church.
Preacher Lockwartz was the speaker.
I started thinking about that guy.
When we left I was the only one with tears in my eyes that day.
That's the way if affects you.
[Thomas Naquin] What is your impression of the war for America?
[Herman Bailey] I watched this thing over here.
The 1st Marine Division was in Okinawa-I mean North Korea.
If it had been me, I can't stand cold weather, and they were in
freezing weather fighting the Chinese.
All that kind of stuff bothers you.
It's your own division.
Of course, there's always somebody else there.
You're not there anymore.
I felt for them guys.
Now you got over here in Iraq.
Walking down the street,
buildings all around up here, and snipers over there,
and you're picking them off. I can't see that.
By this day and time, get the damn war over with.
Don't sit around here walking up and down the street.
I can't stand it. I see them walking down the street.
It just kills me.
[Thomas Naquin] What is your impression
of World War II for America?
[Herman Bailey] Well, just like when I killed that Japanese.
You know what I wrote?
Somebody in Japan
had him there that day, and somebody in Japan
was the cause of me being there that day.
They started it.
We finished it. I'm proud of it.
[Thomas Naquin] Do you believe that the war changed
the rest of the world?
[Herman Bailey] Well, not shortly after that.
It seems like it just
as you go along it just drifts further away.
It's just things-you got
people who are running their mouth about something,
and they ain't ever been there and don't know what it's all about.
If you've been over there in Death Valley like I was, you
sing a different tune I think.
Five days before you can get bloody clothes off,
that's a long time.
Somebody screwed up in the head somewhere around here.
Can't pray. That bunch gets on you.
Well, I don't know what to tell you.
It just looks like it's getting into pretty bad shape right now.
[Thomas Naquin] What was your impression of the Japanese and
their weapons?
[Herman Bailey] You could take a 30 caliber machine gun,
take ours and theirs, and you fire both of them.
You know which is the Japanese. It fires faster.
It fires faster.
You learned what a 77 artillery gun shoots.
It's just something you know that's what it is even if you
can't see it.
You just-I think their weapons were good.
They always fired at us.
[laughter]
[Thomas Naquin] How about the Japanese soldier?
What was your impression of the Japanese soldier?
[Herman Bailey] Well, I didn't change my mind
until I went with Myra over there and my daughter.
You see the movie Letters.
It told how the Japanese had wrote letters, and they buried
them out there because you couldn't mail them.
They couldn't go.
How those guys would talk to one another in the caves.
They were just like us. They didn't want to be there either.
Their country put them there,
and then that's why we had to go there.
I did-
you don't feel sorry for them.
When you see one of them died, it's different now.
I've had a Japanese pickup truck.
I got a Japanese car sitting out there now, and it's the best one
I ever had.
I changed my mind about that kind of thing.
It's not like it was when I was at Okinawa.
[Thomas Naquin] Different time.
[Herman Bailey] It's different times.
You learned-what hurt me the worst, I thought about this,
when the United States give Okinawa back to the Japanese.
The first thing I thought about was Brown
got killed that first night.
I couldn't see it.
He was a coach on the rifle range just like I was.
Good man,
had a beautiful wife, and he's gone.
I didn't have his address.
I could never write his wife or anything.
I didn't know.
But the Japanese
got what was coming to them as we all look at it.
I sound like old Tibbets. He dropped that bomb.
He said, "I never lost no sleep."
[Thomas Naquin] Low call.
[Herman Bailey] Okay. [Thomas Naquin] Yes.
What is the significance of having
the National World War II Museum?
[Herman Bailey] Well, I don't know what I'm different.
It seems like I paid a pretty good price fighting the war,
and they keep sending me wanting me to send them money.
I wouldn't mind sending them money, but it seems like I done
paid my price already.
Is that good enough? [Thomas Naquin] Yes, sir.
Do you think it will help as far as educate future generations?
[Herman Bailey] I would think so,
but I don't think they teach it in school right.
Some of them don't know where Okinawa is,
and they don't know anything.
That kind of hurts.
I just used Okinawa because that's where I was.
[Thomas Naquin] Well, sir, is there anything else you'd like
to add about your experiences in World War II?
[Herman Bailey] No, I just want to forget it now.
I've been going to a psychiatrist, and that's what
the next time I go to see her that's what I'm going to tell her.
I ain't talking no more.
You tell me how to get it out of my head.
That's all I can say.
[Thomas Naquin] Thank you sir, for your time, sir.
[Captioned by Adept Word Management, Inc.]

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Bailey was born in Lancaster County, South Carolina on 12 September 1921.During the Great Depression Bailey's clothes were worn out, he went barefoot, had to walk to church, and he ate molasses and bread for breakfast. They had to drink a glass of buttermilk before they could get a glass of sweet milk.When Bailey was seven years old he was working on a farm plowing with a mule. By the time he was ten years old he was a full time farmer. He would pick his cotton then pick someone else's cotton. They would then take the cotton to the gin where they got 6 cents a pound. His family was sharecroppers and farmed for the man who owned the land they lived on. Bailey worked there until he was 16 years old when his father hired him out to a man named Jennings for 75 cents a day plus his dinner.When he was 16 years old his family got their first radio that was powered by a car battery.Bailey's family moved around North Carolina and South Carolina sharecropping schedules.Bailey left the farm to work as a carpenter's helper at a lumber company. He was promoted to carpenter. He built a hotel where he spent his honeymoon.Bailey quit working for the lumber yard and went to work at a cotton mill where he stayed for 1 year and 11months. On 1 December 1939 construction began on Camp Croft [Annotator’s Note: near Spartanburg, South Carolina]. Bailey went to work at Camp Croft as a carpenter. He watched as troops moved into barracks as soon as they were finished.When Camp Croft was completed h went to Wilmington, North Carolina to build a shipyard on the Cape Fear River.Bailey then went to Columbia, South Carolina to Camp Jackson to build trusses for recreation facilities.At the time Bailey's father was working with him and his brother was hired on with them too and they formed a crew.The crew went to Camp Gordon in Augusta, Georgia. At Camp Gordon they had to join a union, which they did. At Camp Gordon they built barracks.Bailey and crew then moved to Panama City, Florida to build Wainwright Shipyard. After completing the shipyard, Bailey went to a two week school to learn to be a ship-fitter. He worked in the shipyard with a female welder and built LSTs [Annotator’s Note: Landing Ship, Tank] and Liberty ships.After Bailey's third deferment came to an end he was informed that he couldn't get another. He and his wife returned to Lancaster.

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Bailey checked in with his draft board and was put on a bus to Camp Croft. He told the army recruiter that he wanted to join the Marines. He joined the Marines and was sent to Columbia for a medical exam and was sworn in there on 12 October 1943.On 15 October, Bailey's son was born. Seven days later he was passing through the gate at Parris Island [Annotator’s Note: Marine Corps Recruit Depo in South Carolina].Bailey picked up his issue of clothing. He didn't know it at the time, but the Marin with a goatee who issued him his boots was Lou Diamond [Annotator's Note: US Marine Corps Master Gunnery Sergeant Leland "Lou" Diamond].Bailey completed eight weeks of boot camp. During marching training Bailey rocked on his feet after being called to a halt and was yelled at by a Captain.After they learned to march they moved to the rifle range. Bailey made expert at the rifle range.After eight weeks they were issued their dress greens and they were given a ten day pass. After Bailey returned from his pass he was assigned as a coach at the rifle range.With the exception of the two months spent in boot camp, the men were paid an additional five dollars per month for shooting a rifle.Bailey was sent to Camp Lejeune [Annotator’s Note: North Carolina] for combat training. During his training his wife was able to spend ten days with him. When his training was done he was put on a train and sent to Camp Pendleton [Annotator’s Note: California]. After two weeks at Camp Pendleton he was pu aboard a ship. It was now in the middle of December 1944.Bailey went by ship to Pavuvu where it was nothing but coconut trees and it rained every day. Bailey’s job was to make coffee on a 50 gallon drum. He also went out on marches.Bailey was put on a ship and after steaming around for six days he was put ashore on Guadalcanal. After eating a sandwich on the beach, he re-boarded the ship and steamed for Mogmog [Annotator's Note: Ulithi Atoll]. After three days on Mogmog, during which Bailey got fungus in his ear, he went aboard a ship that he was told was heading for Formosa [Annotator’s Note: present day Taiwan]. Once the ship went into the Yellow Sea an announcement was made that the ship was heading for the invasion of Okinawa.

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Bailey had been walking around the ship [Annotator's Note: the ship that was taking him to the invasion of Okinawa]. He sat down on a spool and the wind blew the dollar bills he had just won in a poker game into the water. When he looked over the railing he lost his helmet into the water.Bailey couldn't sleep aboard ship. He would sit topside, look at the stars, and think about home and his wife. On the last night sitting up on deck he watched tracer bullets flying into the sky. It was about midnight on 31 March [Annotator's Note: 31 March 1945]. Bailey saw some planes go down. The closer they got to shore the brighter the tracers got. At daylight the Japanese fired artillery at them but no one was hit.At 8:30 the first wave of regular troops went ashore [Annotator’s Note: 1 April 1945]. Bailey was in the 32nd replacement draft and stayed aboard ship listening to the ship's speakers telling what was going on.Bailey went ashore around 4:30 on an Amtrack [Annotator's Note: an amphibious tank/LVT, Landing Vehicle, Tracked]. When he was going over the side a sailor asked Bailey where his helmet was. When Bailey told him he didn't have one the sailor put his on Bailey's head. Bailey went ashore with a navy helmet.Once ashore Bailey could see ships burning. He could see tracers at night. He stayed in his foxhole and watched the kamikazes. Bailey learned a lot in his first six days ashore. The tracers lit the night sky up like an umbrella. During the day the tracers just had little smoke streaks.The air attacks went on for 139 days [Annotator's Note: Bailey means 39 days] from the 1st of April to the 9th of May.On his first day ashore two Japanese Zeros [Annotator’s Note: Japanese fighter planes] flew right over him and landed on Yontan Airfield. When the pilots jumped out of their planes the Marines nearby shot them. Bailey doesn't know what happened to their planes.Bailey and Dunn were walking near the south end of Yontan Airfield and Dunn fell into a cave. I the cave, two Japanese soldiers were laying on home-made cots. Their bellies were swollen. They had been dead for three or four days. A bomb had hit the cave and there were items scattered everywhere. Bailey picked up 18 pictures.One day Bailey saw a Japanese kamikaze plane brake through the clouds. Bailey shot the plane twice and knows that he hit it. He watched as the plane flew out to a ship offshore and dove into it. The plane went in too high and hit a truck with a canvas top on it and bounced into the water without its bomb going off.The ship left two days later and Bailey could see the Japanese plane still out in the water. He tried to get out to it but had to get back in his foxhole because of an air raid. The hole was full and a guy in the foxhole with him was hit in the thigh and had to be evacuated.

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Bailey was assigned to unloading ships. When he wasn't unloading ships he was walking around. He couldn't stay still.One day Bailey saw a Japanese plane that was heading right for him shot down by a Hellcat [Annotator's Note: US Navy Grumman F6F "Hellcat" fighter aircraft].On 9 May [Annotator's Note: 9 May 1945] Bailey was put aboard a truck and sent to the front. He was in the lead truck of a four truck convoy. During the trip they passed a battery of 155s [Annotator's Note: 155mm howitzers], then a battery of 105s [Annotator's Note: 105mm howitzers], then mortars, and when they got to where rifles were being fired, he knew they were at the front.At the front line, Bailey was assigned as a loader on a bazooka [Annotator's Note: shoulder fired M1A1 2.36 inch rocket launcher] team.When Bailey boarded the truck bound for the front lines he was transferred from the 32nd Replacement Draft to being attached to J, K, and L Companies, 3rd Battalion, 7th Marines, 1st Marine Division. He arrived at the front around 4:00 in the afternoon on the 9th and the following day they advanced into Death Valley.The ones who went in before Bailey couldn't stay. They had six rocket trucks with them that fired 60 rockets each.When the wounded were carried out Bailey recognized one of them who had stolen his clothes back at Camp Pendleton. Bailey had some words with the man but felt bad about doing that later.During the entire time they were advancing, the artillery they had passed fired continually.When they jumped off a .30 caliber machine gun opened up. The men took cover then advanced again. A knee mortar [Annotator's Note: Japanese military Type 89 50mm mortar] began firing at them and they got pinned down in the ditch. They were knee deep in water in the ditch.Bailey followed the ditch until it ended.The following morning the Japanese launched a banzai attack. A sword waving lieutenant led the charge. One of the Marines had a machine gun set up and killed all of the Japanese except one. After the attack ended, Bailey and Sammy Diego were told to bring the bazooka forward. When they arrived at the sight of the attack the surviving enemy soldier jumped up and took off running. The Marines opened fire with rifles, machine guns and eleven rockets from Bailey's bazooka. Sam told Bailey that all eleven rockets were duds except the last shot.

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On the 16th [Annotator’s Note: 16 May 1945 on Okinawa] Bailey moved out but got pinned down again and took cover in another ditch. He watched as two boys started setting up their gun right above him when a mortar round landed next to them killing them.After crossing a ridge Bailey headed for a second one. A Japanese soldier was shooting at them but didn't hit anyone.It was raining. Bailey came across a tank with a wounded man tied to it with a head wound.Bailey looked in a tunnel with his flashlight and saw two Japanese soldiers sitting in there that had been killed the day before by a flame throwing tank. Seeing that made Bailey realize how hot napalm was even though he carried a flame thrower himself.The Marines pulled back but returned the next day and stayed. It was the 19th or 20th of May. The Marines advanced through a wide open field. There were 160 of them. Everything out there was firing.Bailey was firing at a tomb to keep any Japanese in there from firing. He then fired on an enemy soldier who was throwing grenades.Word was passed to pull back. An old Marine threw out smoke grenades and the Marines ran through the smoke. When they emerged from the other side they were fired at. Bailey was being shot at. He ran until he couldn't run anymore. He walked to a foxhole.The following morning there were 90 Marines left of the 160 there had been the day before.Bailey doesn't recall what took place between that battle and their advance toward Naha. He walked up on a ridge that looked down on Naha.Around Naha, Bailey saw his first helicopter. It was also the first experience he had with Japanese spigot mortars [Annotator's Note: Japanese 320mm Type 98 mortar].Bailey located a cave and went into it. Inside he found a Japanese flag and a half gallon of alcohol. There were clothes strewn around and Bailey believes that it had been used as an aid station.Bailey's group pushed off and followed a railroad track in a valley. All along the railroad track were piles of shoes, pants, shirts, and hats covered by tarps that the Marines pulled off to see what was under them.Bailey and another Marine went into a cave. The cave was full of water from all of the rain. Bailey went left into a room that had bunks in it. He saw a lantern in the cave which was still burning. Bailey's friend attempted to remove the lantern but it wouldn't move. The men left the cave through the low end and returned to their foxhole. About 30 minutes later the whole hill blew up.Bailey believes that the lantern was a trap. Word went out that Hill 57 blew up but Bailey wasn't at Hill 57. It was another hill.

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Bailey continued on. After he passed Naha [Annotator’s Note: May 1945, Naha, Okinawa] he encountered civilians for the first time.The special weapons guys were ordered to burn down a number of houses to keep the Japanese from returning.Bailey followed a rock wall down toward the China Sea when he came across a Japanese soldier lying in a rice paddy. Bailey shot the soldier. He still sees the Japanese soldier to this day.As Bailey was nearing the shore, Japanese artillery started shooting at a boat. When Bailey got close the gun stopped firing. The next day Bailey and another Marine took a walk and went into a house. No one was in the house so he went into the barn where he saw a girl lying on the ground who had been raped repeatedly, then killed with a hand grenade. When Bailey was leaving he saw a Japanese soldier under the house. He went back and told his sergeant who took several Marines and went back to the house. They killed three Japanese soldiers.After that time Bailey started seeing civilians; women, children, and old people lying dead on the road. The bodies were covered with maggots.Bailey's unit caught up with the Japanese on Kunishi Ridge.

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Bailey and the Marines got there [Annotator's Note: Kunishi Ridge, Okinawa] on the 11th [Annotator's Note: 11 June 1945] at 3:30 in the morning. Bailey was walking through a cane field when a sniper shot at him. He ran back.When they went across Bailey was carrying a flamethrower. A Japanese soldier ran through their line and dropped a hand grenade. Bailey could see that it was two enemy soldiers.After crossing the field Bailey came across a guy from Australia who had joined the Marine Corps to get into the fight.At the top of Kunishi Ridge, Bailey went left and took up a position that he remained in for the next five days. At some point Bailey and Donald I. Wydell went exploring and found a cave. Bailey went into the cave and found a rifle that had been burnt. He carried the rifle all the way to China where he had a carpenter build him a box to send it home in.Kunishi Ridge was hell. When a cave had to be blown Bailey had to go with the guys blowing it up. Many of the caves wouldn't collapse even with a 24 pound satchel charge.Just about every cave went all the way though the island. A cave that was a dead end would have more blowback [Annotator's Note: from an explosive charge].Bailey and Wydell returned to the cave where he found the rifle. The night they had arrived in the area, supplies had been parachuted to them [Annotator's Note: dropped to the Marines]. When Bailey and Wydell got to the cave they saw that the Japanese had stacked some of the parachuted supplies up in the cave. While they were there, Wydell saw a Japanese soldier. They went back to their lines and Bailey got five pounds of napalm. He went back to the cave opening and set off the napalm. The resulting fire burned until midnight.The next morning Bailey saw a Japanese running through the cane field toward where the explosions were about 400 yards out. Bailey grabbed his rifle and opened fire on the man. The first two rounds missed but the third hit him in the belly. Before Bailey could shoot him again he was told to cease fire by an officer. The Japanese soldier got up and ran off. Bailey doesn't know if he died or not.Bailey and another Marine threw a 24 pound satchel charge into a small cave. They continued moving east. Artillery fire was going off and had been going nonstop since 9 May.They found another cave and went in with Bailey's friend leading the way. The two men came across a pile of sandbags with a blanket hanging over them. Bailey went back to the cave entrance to get a hand grenade and as soon as he got back a Japanese soldier shot his friend in the back as he was reaching to grab the grenade from Bailey. Bailey fired 16 rounds from his carbine then they got out. Bailey threw two 24 pound satchel charges into the cave. When Bailey's friend was taken away on a stretcher that was the last time he ever saw him.After the war Bailey was in Bradenton, Florida where his friend was from. He looked up his friend's name in the phone book and located an uncle who told him that his friend had moved to the West Coast to live with his half brother and they hadn't heard from him since. 

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On Kunishi Ridge on 15 June [Annotator’s Note:  15 June 1945, Okinawa] Bailey and several other Marines went along the ridge with satchel charges blowing up the overhangs that the Japanese were using to shoot at them from. Bailey came across a Marine that had been shot in the knee.The next day Bailey went east along the sugar cane field. He came across an interpreter trying to get some people out of a cave. The interpreter told Bailey to blow the cave so he tossed in a satchel charge. He's no sure how many people he killed. That was the last cave he blew up.Bailey returned to his position and ran back into Wydell. They decided to go back to the cave they had found before. A Japanese sniper had been in the area and had already shot 15 Marines. As they approached the cave Wydell said to Bailey, 'look at that gun barrel sticking out of that crack right there." About two seconds after Wydell said that, a second Japanese soldier in the cave below them blew his head off. Right after the first Japanese soldier killed himself, Bailey and Wydell heard the sniper above them arm a Japanese grenade. The sniper held the grenade against his head and killed himself. Either of the Japanese soldiers could have killed him and Wydell both but they killed themselves instead.Bailey was nervous that day. He thinks he may have turned white.

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On the 17th of June [Annotator's Note: 17 June 1945 on Okinawa] they moved back off of Kunishi Ridge. A colonel was directing the men where to go. Bailey went behind a big rock to use the facilities when a Corsair [Annotator's Note: American Vought F4U "Corsair" fighter aircraft] flew by and strafed to the area where he was. That was the last scary thing Bailey experienced on Okinawa.Bailey's unit moved off of the front lines and were relieved by the 2nd Marine Division. Bailey's unit moved back to the area where the sniper had been. Bailey believes that evidence of the dead sniper is still in that spot.On the first night they were in position a Japanese soldier dug himself out of the cave after it had been blown shut and was shot by a Marine.Back at Pavuvu, Bailey got a 32 and a half cent silver coin off a Marine who had been in Australia. Bailey beat the coin with his GI spoon and made a ring out of. He wore the ring until 1980 when it fell apart.The only two Japanese prisoners Bailey ever saw were older. One was in his 40s and the other was in his 30s. Bailey believes that the older guys were more likely to surrender than the younger ones. It wasn't until the very end that the younger guys surrendered.Bailey got off the front line on the 18th [Annotator's Note: 18 June 1945]. General Buckner was on the front lines on the 20th or 21st when an artillery shell went off. A rock hit the general and killed him [Annotator's Note: US Army General Simon Bolivar Buckner was killed on 18 June 1945. He was the highest ranking American officer to be killed during World War II] making him the only general to be killed in the Pacific.At the entrance to a village, a girl ran toward Bailey but she turned and went the other way after a man called her back. Bailey and his fellow Marines had burned most of the village the day before.While they were in a valley, they came across a spring. When Bailey got there, there were ten Marines stripped down who were using their helmets to fill up and pour water on their heads. While they were bathing, two Okinawan women in their 20s came up and each filled up two buckets with water then left. Bailey says that the Marines were gentlemen on that day.Later that day, Bailey and Vincent Bennett were called to burn out a cave with a flame thrower. Down at the cave, a woman and a little girl came out of the cave with an interpreter. The little girl was lying down near several Marines and looked like she couldn't breathe. The interpreter told Bailey to burn the cave. Bailey signaled his partner with the flame thrower who walked up and burned the cave out. When he stopped firing the interpreter told him that there had still been women in the cave. Bailey and his partner didn't know that. That has stuck with Bailey to this day. While burning out the cave Bailey's partner was injured when he brushed up against a rough cut piece of wood but he kept firing. After they were finished Bailey didn't see his partner again until he got up north.The sniper's nest, blowing the cave up with six Japs in it, and burning the cave with the women in it stuck with Bailey.

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Bailey has seen the Okinawan civilian jumping off of cliffs on television. It puzzles Bailey how two Okinawan women could walk into a spring full of naked Marines without being phased, but other killed themselves.When Bailey left the front lines on the 18th [Annotator's Note: 18 June 1945] he went back to his foxhole he stayed in it.During the fighting in Death Valley, one of Bailey's friends was wounded and evacuated to Guam. When Bailey was in his foxhole after leaving the front lines he saw his friend again.One time, Bailey and another Marine were climbing aboard a weapons carrier when the other Marine's rifle went off. No one was hit and no one said anything about it.When they moved to the shore they boarded an LST [Annotator's Note: Landing Ship, Tank] and went up north. They built a tent city and trained for the invasion of Japan.Bailey shared a tent with his friend Wydell. They were preparing for the biggest invasion in history, the invasion of mainland Japan which was scheduled for November. President Truman was the first president Bailey ever voted for.After the atomic bombs were dropped, the results were listed on the bulletin board in Bailey's camp. Everybody got drunk. The Japanese agreed to unconditional surrender. The peace was signed on 2 September [Annotator's Note: 2 September 1945] on the deck of a battleship [Annotator's Note: the American battleship USS Missouri (BB-63)] in Tokyo Bay.Soon after the signing of the surrender the bulletin board said that the 1st Marine Division would be going home. Ten days later, the board said that the 1st Marine Division was going to China to disarm the Japanese and send them home. The First Marine Division landed in China on 30 September. They travelled by train to Tientsin [Annotator’s Note: now Tianjin, China] where they stayed about a week before moving north.They were assigned to guard the British KMA [Annotator’s Note: probably the Kailan Mining Administration] coal mines.The first time they went out to disarm Japanese, they went to an airport. They found six Japanese sleeping in a large well. They woke them up, and the Japanese lined up in front of the Marines and bowed to them. That was the only time Bailey can think of that the Japanese would bow to them.Everything they asked them to do, they did it.At Tientsin they had a parade. The Chinese civilians were ten deep lining the road. The Chinese referred to the Marines as ‘ding how’ [Annotator's Note: or spelled ‘ting hao’ probably gesturing ‘excellent’ or ‘thumb’s up’] and to the Japanese as ding bu how [Annotator's Note: probably meaning the opposite of ‘ding how’]. It was a parade like no other.Bailey was one of the first Americans that the Japanese bowed to.

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Bailey had a picture of himself with a flamethrower on his back. It was taken while he was waiting to go free one of their trains that had been shot up by Chinese communists.On the train Bailey was on, there was a Chinese colonel, a female, who spoke five languages. She would talk to the Marines, but Bailey never got to talk to her. Bailey could see from his train all of the bridges and railroad lines that had been blown up by the Chinese communists.Bailey had a pretty good time in China. They disarmed the Japanese and stored the weapons in a warehouse then had to guard the warehouse to keep the Chinese from stealing them.Bailey got to see a Chinese wedding there.Bailey saw kids who would stop and "do their business" on the street.The Chinese were good to the Marines. The Japanese were polite and would bow. When Japanese went home, Bailey went home.Bailey arrived in China on the 30th of September 1945 and left there on 9 February 1946. When he left China, it was the last rope ladder Bailey ever climbed. As they were leaving China, he could see the lights from passing cars on the street. After leaving, he didn't see another light until he got to San Diego, California.Bailey saw a USO show with three or four girls who danced on stage.Bailey was the loader on the bazooka but never fired it. He carried the flamethrower but never fired it. When J, K, or L Company needed a cave blown one of their men would bring a satchel charge to the entrance and Bailey would throw it in. Bailey doesn't want to dwell on the number of people who were in the caves. All of the satchel charges Bailey threw went off.When Bailey got home it was a Saturday. The following Wednesday he was working. He thinks that helped him with getting back to a normal life.Bailey has dreams about fighting in a place he was never at.Bailey wasn't affected by the war until sitting in church one day and he suddenly started thinking about the Japanese soldier he shot in a rice paddy. When everyone left the church, Bailey had tears in his eyes.

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Bailey feels that war should be over with. His division fought the Chinese in North Korea. Young men are fighting today.After Bailey killed the Japanese soldier in the rice paddy he wrote that someone in Japan had him there that day and someone in Japan was the cause of him being there that day. They started it and he finished it.Bailey doesn't believe that the war changed the world. He thinks the world is in pretty bad shape right now.Bailey could tell the difference between the sounds of the American weapons and the Japanese weapons.Bailey feels that the typical Japanese soldier didn't want to be there any more than he did. He didn't feel sorry for them at all. He feels different today.Bailey gets emotional when thinking about the American government giving Okinawa back to Japan.Bailey thinks that having a "National World War II Museum" is important but feels that he has already paid his share.

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