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Navy Lists Jap Prisoners

This clip is from “The Capital” newspaper in Annapolis, Maryland on 19 Feb 1942. It was not know at the time that the inhabitants of the tiny Wake Island fought for their lives and died trying. Henry Talmage “Hammerin’ Hank” Elrod died almost two months prior defending the island ultimately earning him the Medal of Honor.

Henry Talmage “Hammerin’ Hank” Elrod

(September 27, 1905–December 23, 1941) was a Marine Corps aviator. He was the first aviator to receive the Medal of Honor during World War II, for his heroism in the defense of Wake Island. On December 4, 1941, Captain Elrod flew to Wake Island with twelve aircraft, twelve pilots, and the ground crew of Major Paul Putnam’s fighter squadron,VMF-211. Hostilities in the air over Wake Island commenced on December 8, 1941. On December 12, he single-handedly attacked a flight of 22 enemy planes and shot down two. He executed several low-altitude bombing and strafing runs on enemy ships; during one of these attacks, he became the first man to sink a warship, the Japanese destroyer Kisaragi, with small caliber bombs delivered from a fighter aircraft.

When all the U.S. aircraft had been destroyed by hostile fire, he organized remaining troops into a beach defense unit which repulsed repeated Japanese attacks. On December 23, 1941, Captain Elrod was mortally wounded while protecting his men who were carrying ammunition to a gun emplacement. Courtesy of http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Henry_T._Elrod

The_Capital_Thu__Feb_19__1942_

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