Davis, Earle, Sgt

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0300-Basic Infantryman
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1942-1942, 3rd Raider Bn



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New Jersey
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This Military Service Page was created/owned by Cpl Pat Fay to remember Marine Sgt Earle Davis.

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Central Pacific Campaign (1941-43)/Attack of Guam
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The First Battle of Guam was an engagement during the Pacific War in World War II, and took place on 8 December 1941 on Guam in the Mariana Islands between the Empire of Japan and the United States. The American garrison was defeated by Japanese forces, which resulted in an occupation until the Second Battle of Guam in 1944.
At 04:45 on 8 December, the Governor of the island, George McMillin was informed about the attack on Pearl Harbor. At 08:27, Japanese aircraft from Saipan attacked the Marine Barracks, the Piti Navy Yard, Libugon radio station, Standard Oil Company, and the Pan American Hotel. During the air attack, the minesweeper USS Penguin, the largest navy vessel at the island, was sunk after shooting down an airplane. One officer was killed and several men wounded. The air raids all over Guam continued into the morning and afternoon before subsiding at 17:00.

The next day at 08:30, Japanese air attacks resumed, with no more than nine aircraft attacking at a time. The same targets as the previous day were attacked, and also the Government House in Agana and several villages. That evening, a Japanese invasion fleet of four heavy cruisers, four destroyers, two gunboats, and six submarine chasers, two minesweepers, and two tenders left Saipan for Guam. A mistake in their intelligence gathering had caused the Japanese to overcommit resources and attack Guam with disproportionate force.

The Japanese landed about 400 troops of the 5th Defence Force from Saipan on Guam on 10 December 1941 at Dungcas Beach, north of Agana. They attacked and quickly defeated the Insular Force Guard in Agana. They then advanced on Piti, moving toward Sumay and the Marine Barracks. The principal engagement took place on Agana's Plaza de Espana at 04:45 when a few Marines and Insular Force Guardsmen fought with the Japanese naval soldiers. After token post invasion resistance, the Marines on Govenor McMillin's orders surrendered at 05:45. Governor McMillin officially surrendered at 06:00. A few skirmishes took place all over the island before news of the surrender spread and the rest of the island forces laid down their arms. The American patrol boat YP-16 was scuttled by means of fire during the event and YP-17 was captured by Japanese naval forces. An American freighter was damaged by the Japanese.

In the meantime the Japanese South Seas Detached Force (about 5,500 men) under the command of Major-General Tomitaru Horii made separate landings at Tumon Bay in the north, on the southwest coast near Merizo, and on the eastern shore of the island at Talafofo Bay.

U.S. Marine losses were five killed and 13 wounded (including the prior Japanese air assault of the island, the Marines' losses were 13 dead and 37 wounded[14]). The U.S. Navy lost eight killed while four of the Guam Insular Force Guards were killed and 22 other wounded. One Japanese naval soldier was killed[12] and six wounded. Pfc Kauffman was killed by the Japanese after the surrender.[15]

Thirteen American civilians were killed by the Japanese during the battle. Six U.S. radiomen decided to evade capture from the Japanese rather than surrender; five were eventually captured by the Japanese and beheaded. George Ray Tweed, a U.S. Navy radioman and one of the original six men, managed to survive with the help of local Chamorros. They moved him from village to village, sometimes endangering their own families for his protection. The Japanese knew that an unknown American could not hide without some form of help. Consequently, Chamorro suspects were questioned, tortured, and beheaded. Despite the horrific abuses, Chamorros loyal to the United States protected Tweed, as he represented the spirit of America and of America's return. The radioman managed to covertly endure throughout the two and one-half years of occupation.
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  17 Also There at This Battle:
  • Kuonen, Charlie Robert, Cpl, (1940-1946)
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