By Col. Joseph H. Alexander USMC-R
This booklet, one in a chain dedicated to U.S. Marines on the earth struggle II period, is released for the schooling and coaching of Marines by way of the heritage and Museums department, Headquarters, U.S. Marine Corps, Washington, D.C., as part of the U.S. division of protection observance of the fiftieth anniversary of victory in that war."
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Extra resources for Across the Reef: The Marine Assault of Tarawa
Edson, Division chief of staff, stand s in left background (hands on hips) . Col Evans Carlson, an observer from the 4t h day : assault the strongpoints to the east . The obstacles were just a s daunting on D+2 . Three fortification s were especially formidable : a steel pill box near the contested Burns-Phil p pier ; a coconut log emplacement wit h multiple machine guns ; and a large bombproof shelter further inland . Al l Resistance was stiffening, the compa- three had been designed by Admira l ny commander had just been shot by Saichero, the master engineer, to b e Marine Division used as high-priced courier by Shoup, rests in the foreground .
All of this was per - with recent combat experience in th e Aleutians . In the next three days Oliver's team treated more than 55 0 severely wounded Marines . " Navy chaplains were also hard a t work wherever Marines were fighting ashore . Theirs was particularl y heartbreaking work, consoling th e wounded, administering last rites t o the dying, praying for the souls of th e dead before the bulldozer came to cover the bodies from the unforgiv ing tropical sun . The tide of battle began to shif t LtGen Julian C .
Mostly it wa s close, hand-to-hand fighting and sur vival for three and a half days . I t seemed like the longest period of m y life :' Lieutenant Lillibridge had n o nourishment at all until the after noon of D+3 . "One of my me n mixed up a canteen cup full of ho t water, chocolate, coffee, and sugar , and gave it to me, saying he though t I needed something . It was the bes t meal I ever had : ' The Marines stared numbly at th e desolation that surrounded them . does not touch the coral flat a t all .