Marine Vignette #125, "Old Salt--Haiti, China, Iceland..., By Bettie Goldman
April 27 2000 at 5:14 PM No score for this post
(Login Dick Gaines) Forum Owner from IP address 126.96.36.199
Dick --Thanks for asking permission to place my email to you on your Vignettes page. What do
you think about using
My dad, Hardy Phifer Murry, had seen duty in Haiti, Peking, and Iceland before he and mother
were married on
April 4, 1942. My mother was from the small town of New Albany in Northeast Mississippi and
daddy from a little
farming community just up the road called Hickory Flat. Shortly after they were married, daddy
was shipped out to
the Pacific, leaving mother safely tucked away with her family and friends in New Albany.
Mother, being somewhat
naive and intensely proud of her new Marine husband, had no reservations about sharing her
letters from daddy
with their families and friends. So when someone from their local newspaper, asked about
printing one of these
letters, Mother was thrilled. Of course, daddy's reaction to the news that his letter had been
published was horror.
"He didn't like it one bit", mother recalls. To my question, "What did he say?" she replied, "He
didn't say a word.
But I never received any more letters about what he was doing in the war."
The original letter met an unknown fate but we do have the excerpts as they were published in
the New Albany,
MS newspaper article: (Sadly, the name of the newspaper and the date have been cut off)
"MARINES 'TOO TOUGH' FOR JAPS AND 'WE'RE HEADING FOR JAPAN'
SAYS THE HUSBAND OF NEW ALBANIAN IN THE FIGHT
"A letter received recently by Mrs. H.P. Murry of New Albany, the former Miss Polly Young, from
who is a sergeant of the Marine Corps and engaged in the fierce fighting in the Solomon Islands
Island, tells a graphic story of the "toughness" of the Marines when pitted against the Japs in an
struggle, such as they have recently been.
"Sgt. Murry is of the opinion that "we are headed for Japan now" and that as "they asked for it,
we are going to
give it to them". He agrees in principle with the late General Sherman of Civil War days about
the definition of
"War", meaning of course that it is very close bloodkin to the lower regions under the rule of
Satan himself, as you
will note from his letter which follows in part:
"On August 7 we arrived in the Solomon Islands at Gaudalcanal Island and it was then occupied
by the Japs, but
for only a short time. We went in at 6 a.m. and had landed troops by 9:10 a.m. At one o'clock
the fireworks started.
"The Japs brought in 18 twin-motored bombers and tried to blast us out, but they lost nine of
their planes and we
had no casualties.
"On the 8th they tried more desperately to move us out, but in only cost them more. They
brought 42 of the same
planes over but they only got away with eight. On the 9th they tried to get in by ship and at 2
a.m. we engaged
them. It lasted the rest of the night, but by 7 a.m. it was all over and the Japs' ships were on the
"It was the first offensive the U.S. has tried, and believe you me it was a big success. There
were some exciting
moments but I wouldn't have missed it for the world, and this is only the beginning. We are
going on to Japan and
get it over with.
"They are now beginning to realize they can't stand up to the Marines and the Navy and I will
certainly give the
Navy credit. They are on the job. It looks like from out here that Japan is now ripe for killing, and
believe me we are
not going to stop at this.
"Sherman was right when he said, 'War is Hell', but they have asked for it, and we are going to
give it to them", Sgt.
"Sgt. Murry has done 17 years service with the Marine Corps, during which time he has served
in China, Cuba,
Iceland and now in the Solomons. He was recently promoted to the grade of Gunnery Sargeant.
He is the son of
Mr. and Mrs. G. Arthur Murry of Hickory Flat."
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