#478 - Decorated Soldier & Horseman
For almost nine years and thanks to the loyal listeners. Who continue to enjoy this podcast. It was the last major battle of world war two and it happened on what was then a little known island in the south pacific. Okinawa the us army and marine corps. Converged on okinawa in its final push towards japan. The japanese high command knew that if the allied forces captured okinawa they could use the airbases there to launch a successful attack when the american troops landed on okinawa on april. First nineteen forty-five they met no resistance. That i only when the troops came inland. Did they realize the japanese had the americans right where they wanted them. Among the one hundred eighty thousand. American troops on okinawa was the future president of keeneland race course marine infantry officer james e ted bassett fourth marine regiment sixth division and it is an honor to have the ninety year old. Mr basset here with us to pick up the story of the battle of okinawa. And caitlyn for that matter. We welcome mr basset here to win the gate. So take us through what happened. When the army and your marine units encountered the japanese resistance on okinawa when we landed on open of all things april first. Full abe rupel's say about eight hundred ad been heavily bombarded both by air and sea and we landed expecting it to be a really sort of deadly experienced a very bad high chasm. We landed no resistance whatsoever. We landed without casualty injury and moved in what happened. The japanese back and sets out of a i wouldn't say attract but mo- moved in but into we ran into him. Oh it was three aboard. As low. As we went north. I i was a rifle. Platoon leader young second. Lieutenant and hannah segment attune baker company per battalion ford marines. Sixth marine division. And i was wounded on the fifteenth of april. Hang it was and then. I was hit by as we were evacuating. What was that like. Can you take your paint a picture of what that was like. Well i i was criticized a little bit as i got back to the regiment i. I was evacuated. The site ban was in the hospital. I got shot through the right hand. And then i had hit a more in the knee but when i finally got back in august was over and my peers and associates. My god best. What were you doing. How'd you get in a wavy where you are hand up in the air. Basset hound. god's named edgy. You get hit and you're right. It was a sniper shot. I can't tell you. But i'm glad i didn't hit between my eyes but i don't remember baby. I do remember this. That the cormon bandaged hand up. I was bleeding badly. The hand and took me probably is a recall five or six hours to get to first aid to be because the battle is going on and again they did immediately take you so you celebrate crawled around but then i got got there and then i was in a field tent and then I was back who aided to a navy hospital ship and and I was worried at that time. Those gonna lose a hand. I didn't know anything about it but it turned out. It didn't and didn't impair man. I've been okay sensor. I was in the hospital ship. The uss benevolent and we took to surpass site pan. Now's now over weeks. did you get injured. A second time at okinawa is well. No no no no it was. It was a combination of probably five or ten minutes. In other words he got shot through the hand and one on way around. There was a mortar barrage from the japs. It was it was in the same general timeframe you know eight at ten minutes.