New Caledonia, Third Marine Division, Marines discussed on Veterans Chronicles
It was a, it was a replacement center where the marines came in to this center, and then they would send them out to the various marine divisions. At that time, we had four divisions who had first second third and fourth. And they would send them out to fill in the vacancy of people who had been wounded or killed, and that was the nations. And third marine division, at that point, was on bougainville. And set us a group of us from New Caledonia to Guadalcanal. And from Guadalcanal we were supposed to go from there to New Caledonia. I mean, to bougainville to fill in the slots of wounded and killed marines there. But before they can get us all organized and shipped out, the marines on Doug and Vale security island, or they declared it secured. And they came to Guadalcanal. They had come from New Zealand to bougainville. Now they come to Guadalcanal, and we join the division there. And that's where I was selected, volunteered, if you will. I was told a long time before that date in the Marine Corps. Don't volunteer for anything. There's bad idea. But I was volunteered for frame floor demolition, specialist group. Which was just forming because we had never seen a flamethrower before. We had hadn't had them. We had a manual with it that's told us how to tear it apart and how to put it back together, but no method of how to use it. What's the procedure? How do you strap the 70 pound thing on your back and do something? So we had no manual that told us that. So we had to work that out. Describe it a little bit to how big, how long, how heavy. Okay. The unit was formed. I was a, I was a browning automatic rifle, individual in a squad. When I was selected to be a flamethrower. Operator. And they selected 6 of us from the company from C company. And assigned a gunnery sergeant to be our immediate supervisor. It was his job to train us about the flamethrower. So there was a form or an information sheet with it that said we would use what we called for a Fox first gel. It was a powder that we mixed with gasoline that turned it into a sticky gel with phosphorus in it. So that if the phosphorus hits something burning, of course, because when we went out at the end of the gun or the flamethrower set it a fire because we had a cylinder out there that lit that let the fuel. And it would be burning and if you tried to brush it off, you just spread it and made it worse. But whatever it hit, it stuck to and burned. And that was the first fuel that they recommended that we used. It's paused right there. Mister Williams, and we'll be right back on veterans chronicles. We're back on veterans chronicles, honored to be joined today by Herschel, woody Williams, Medal of Honor recipient from the Battle of Iwo Jima in World War II, of course. And sir, you were just explaining the details of the flamethrower, and you were just explaining to us in the break how it was difficult to manipulate in many ways. Yes. That's true. The first few were using as a, as I said, was called a phosphorus gel that we settle on fire when we expelled it from the God from the tanks..