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Appendix A

Contents

APPENDIX A

Casualties, 1st Battalion, 148th Infantry, 37th Division 
New Georgia Campaign, 18 July-5 August 1943

James E. T. Hopkins, M.D.

In the following pages, the various engagements of the 1st Battalion, 148th Infantry, are grouped into tactical situations, and casualties are described in the order in which they occurred in combat.

Tactical Situation No. 1, 18 July 1943

The 2d Battalion of the 148th Infantry landed at Zanana Beach on 18 July and, with a few men from the 1st Battalion, moved 1 mile up the Munda trail and dug in for the night. During the day, a patrol from Company G had located a Japanese machinegun emplacement covering the trail about 300 yards from the Barike River. In spite of this knowledge, the regimental S-3 (operations and training) advanced along the trail with several vehicles, and the following casualty occurred:

Case 1.-Severe penetrating wounds of the entire body. This man was a truck driver in the forward vehicle advancing on the enemy-held Munda trail. He was struck by .25 caliber light machinegun fire at a 60-yard range. Classified as KIA, died instantly. This type of patrol was unnecessary; the patrol leaders had been warned about the machinegun.

Tactical Situation No. 2, Night of 18 July 1943

The 1st Battalion set up a perimeter for the night along the Munda trail, a half mile from the beach, deep in the jungle. Two casualties were sustained that night.

Case 2.-Severe penetrating wound of the lower third of the left leg. This man stood up from his foxhole in the early morning hours of 19 July and was shot by another soldier with a .30 caliber rifle at a range of approximately 10 to 20 yards. Classified as WIA, second echelon type. This casualty occurred during the first night that the men were in combat; they had not had previous contact with the enemy.

Case 3.-Severe perforating wound of the head. This man sat up in his foxhole while talking in his sleep during the early morning hours of 19 July and was shot by another soldier with an M1 rifle at a range of approximately 20 to 30 yards. Classified as KIA. This casualty occurred under circumstances similar to those of Case 2.

Tactical Situation No. 3, 19-20 July 1943

At 1100 hours on 19 July, while the 2d Battalion, 148th Infantry, was held in reserve, the 1st Battalion advanced west along the Munda trail to the first branch of the Barike River, with Company A leading the column. The advance was frequently slowed by fire from enemy snipers.

At 1200 hours, when the medical aidmen were resting at the rear of the column, word reached them that a litter squad was required. The circumstances were found to be as follows:

The jungle along this section had been thinned by artillery fire during a previous engagement. The trail on the far side of a small jeep bridge which spanned the Barike River was


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moderately flat, and the jungle was thinned out for an area of about an acre. On the right, on the U.S. Army side of the bridge, a steep hill fell to the water in front and to the road on the side. On the left of the route, the jungle was flat, but very dense. Several dugouts were located on each side of the stream. As Company A crossed the bridge, two heavy enemy machineguns started firing, and, during the course of action for the next 24 hours, 5 men were killed and 11 wounded. The Japanese sustained at least 25 casualties, half definitely killed by rifle and automatic weapons fire and the remainder by mortar and artillery fire.

Case 4.-Multiple, severe penetrating wounds of the upper and lower extremities and of the scrotum. This man, a member of a patrol moving in single file, was struck by the first burst from a Japanese heavy machinegun. He was wounded at 1100 hours on 19 July but managed to pull himself into a dugout where he remained for 30 hours during which time he managed to kill three Japanese. He was evacuated on 20 July and was classified as WIA, U.S. evacuation type.

Case 5.-Multiple, severe penetrating and perforating wounds of the lower extremities. This man was wounded while walking single file on an open trail, and 6 hours after his initial wound he received additional fatal grenade and bayonet wounds. Classified as KIA.

Case 6.-Severe perforating wound of the thorax. This man was a member of a patrol walking single file in an open trail when he was struck by fire from a Japanese heavy machinegun at a range of approximately 100 yards. Classified as KIA.

Case 7.-Severe perforating wound of the thorax. This man was killed under circumstances similar to those of Case 6. Classified as KIA.

Case 8.-Moderately severe laceration of the head. This man was on patrol when he was struck by Japanese machinegun fire at a range of approximately 100 yards. He received a dressing for his wound and was evacuated 20 hours later. Classified as WIA, first echelon type.

Case 9.-Moderately severe penetrating wound of the right arm. This man was struck by heavy machinegun fire at a range of approximately 100 yards. He received a dressing for his wound and was evacuated 20 hours later. Classified as WIA, second echelon type.

Case l0.-Moderately severe penetrating wound of the left arm. This man was wounded by Japanese machinegun fire. After receiving an initial dressing for the wound, he was evacuated some 20 hours later. Classified as WIA, second echelon type.

Case 11.-Moderately severe penetrating wound of the left leg. This man was wounded by Japanese machinegun fire. After an initial dressing, he was evacuated some 20 hours later. Classified as WIA, second echelon type.

Case 12.-Multiple penetrating wounds of the face. This man, while on patrol, was injured by Japanese heavy machinegun fire. He was evacuated immediately. Classified as WIA, U.S. evacuation type.

Case 13.-Penetrating wounds of the foot with fractures of the metatarsal bones. This man was wounded while on patrol. He was evacuated immediately. Classified as WIA, U.S. evacuation type.

Case 14.-Severe penetrating wound of the left leg. This man was wounded while on patrol. Classified as WIA, second echelon type.

Case l5.-Moderately severe laceration of the left arm. This man was a member of a patrol. He managed to escape the initial burst from a Japanese heavy machinegun but was wounded several minutes later while attempting to roll out of the lane of fire. He was wounded at a range of approximately 100 yards. Classified as WIA, immediate duty type.

Case 16.-Multiple penetrating and perforating wounds of the thorax and the abdomen. This medical aidman was killed while attempting to reach a casualty. He was struck by fire from several heavy machineguns at a range of approximately 100 yards. This man was advancing in a standing crouch position and should have been crawling. Classified as KIA.

Case 17.-Multiple, severe penetrating and perforating wounds of both lower extremities. This aidman was advancing in a standing crouch position in an attempt to reach a casualty. His lower extremities were splinted, and he was evacuated within 1 hour. Am-


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putation of the right lower extremity was performed several days later. Classified as WIA, U.S. evacuation type.

Case 18.-Moderately severe penetrating wounds of the right arm. This man, a member of a patrol, was struck by the initial burst of Japanese heavy machinegun fire. Classified as WIA, first echelon type.

Case 19.-Severe perforating wound of the head. This man, while on defensive action, was crawling into a dugout with two other soldiers when a bullet from a Japanese heavy machinegun passed through the slits between the logs of the dugout and produced a fatal wound. Classified as KIA.

On 20 July, the following two casualties occurred:

Case 20.-Severe perforating wound of the lower part of the right leg. This man, while walking about the perimeter shortly after leaving his foxhole, was struck by a .25 caliber bullet. He received 1 unit of plasma and was evacuated 2 hours later. Classified as WIA, U.S. evacuation type.

Case 21.-Severe perforating wounds of the right leg. This man, while on offensive action walking to one side of the trail, was struck by a .25 caliber bullet. Classified as WIA, second echelon type.

During tactical situation No. 3, the American forces consisted of approximately two platoons of infantry plus heavy weapons, and the Japanese forces consisted of not more than one platoon with heavy and light machineguns. The 1st Battalion forces sustained a total of 21 casualties, 7 KIA and 14 WIA. The Japanese forces sustained about 25 to 50 casualties, 18 of whom were estimated as being due to small arms fire and the remainder as being due to mortar and heavy artillery fire.

Tactical Situation No. 4, 21 July-1 August 1943

On 21 July 1943, the 1st Battalion advanced against little enemy resistance to a parachute drop at which the 169th Infantry had been relieved the previous day by the 2d Battalion. The 2d Battalion had reached the area by bypassing the Japanese resistance. A raiding party of 100 to 200 Japanese had attacked a litter party of the 118th Medical Battalion, Collecting Company B, and approximately 40 men were buried in this area; 10 were casualties and 8 were litter bearers.

Most of the activities during the next 3 days consisted of patrol duty. The 1st Battalion had four casualties from U.S. artillery fire and six from enemy automatic weapons fire. On the morning of 25 July, three casualties resulted from friendly artillery fire.

In the late afternoon of 25 July, the 1st Battalion dug in on the right side of O'Brien Hill. A small patrol was dispatched on what was called a "suicide mission" in an attempt to obtain prisoners. Although the enemy was said to be poorly armed, the patrol met heavy resistance from automatic weapons fire and three were wounded. The objective of the patrol was not accomplished.

On 26 July, two casualties were sustained from grenade fragments.

During the late afternoon of 27 July, the 1st and 2d Battalions dug in 300 yards west and to the right of O'Brien Hill, at what was to be a supply dump. Very little enemy activity took place during the day. On the same day, however, a group of engineers had attempted to build a jeep trail to the area of the supply dump, and, after they had been ambushed by Japanese snipers, two men were killed and several others wounded.

At 0700 hours on 28 July, the regimental commander requested that the 1st Battalion send out two litter squads with a protecting rifle squad to pick up the bodies of the two engineers just mentioned. Although no enemy resistance had been anticipated, heavy small arms fire was encountered; five men were killed and one was wounded. The bodies of the two engineers were not recovered.

Although at least a company of Japanese troops were known to be on the left flank, the 1st and 2d Battalions were ordered to advance approximately 700 yards on a 270 azimuth.


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Company A, with an unprotected mortar squad, was left to guard the ration dump. When this company sent out a platoon in an attempt to bring back a casualty and clean up enemy resistance, the platoon was obliged to retreat back to the ration dump without accomplishing either mission.

In the meantime, the 1st and 2d Battalions successfully advanced to their destination overlooking Munda airfield, sustaining only one casualty. When a bulldozer trail from the ration dump followed the advancing battalions, 2 men were killed in action during the late afternoon of 28 July and 11 were wounded in action.

On the morning of 29 July, it was learned that the ration dump was surrounded by the enemy and that the trail was not open. All remaining wounded were therefore evacuated by jeeps over the enemy-held trails.

The two battalions advanced toward the ration dump during the day of 29 July. The 1st Battalion, which was in the rear position, sustained only one casualty. On the morning of 30 July, the 2d Battalion walked single file around the enemy resistance and retreated from the area. The 1st Battalion did not disperse the enemy or open the trail to the ration dump until 1200 hours on 1 August 1943. Between 30 July and 1 August, it had 92 casualties, 17 of whom were KIA or DOW. No evacuation was available for the wounded from 1600 hours on 28 July until 1200 hours on 1 August.

An interesting sidelight of this particular engagement is that, between 30 July and 1 August, the 160th Infantry was unable to make full use of its supporting artillery during its attack on the three hills which lay across their line of advance because the location of the 1st Battalion was so uncertain the free use of the artillery would probably have caused many casualties among U.S. troops.

During the tactical situation described between 21 July and 1 August 1943, U.S. forces engaged varied in strength, at any single time, from one platoon to a maximum of 1,000 infantry troops. The opposing Japanese strength was estimated at 200 to 500 troops. The 1st and 2d Battalions, 148th Infantry, sustained 219 casualties, of whom 53 were KIA.

A discussion of the 1st Battalion casualties (112) and a description of the circumstances under which they occurred during the 21 July-1 August action follow.

On 21 July 1943, the 1st Battalion took over part of the 169th Infantry area and the following casualties occurred:

Case 22.-Minor laceration of the right side of the thorax. This man was on defensive action walking over irregular, thick jungle terrain when he was struck by a .25 caliber rifle bullet at a range of approximately 100 or 200 yards. Classified as WIA, immediate duty type.

Case 23.-Minor penetrating wound of the left side of the thorax. This man, while in a foxhole during an American artillery barrage, was struck by a shell fragment at a range of approximately 100 yards. Classified as WIA, immediate duty type.

Case 24.-Moderately severe laceration of the lower part of the right thigh directly over the patella. This man, in a position similar to that of Case 23, was wounded by American artillery fire. Classified as WIA, first echelon type.

Case 25.-Moderately severe laceration of the left arm. This man, in a position similar to that of Case 23, was struck by American artillery fire. Classified as WIA, second echelon type.

Case 26.-Moderately severe penetrating wounds of the head. This man, in a position similar to that of Case 23, was struck by American artillery fire. Classified as WIA, first echelon type.

Case 27.-No record available.

The following casualties occurred when a small party protecting a bulldozer ran into an ambush:

Case 28.-Severe penetrating wound of the thorax. This man, while walking on patrol, was struck by a burst of .25 caliber machinegun fire at an unknown range. Classified as KIA.


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Case 29.-Multiple, severe penetrating wounds of the left upper and lower extremities. This man was on patrol when he was struck by a burst of a .25 caliber machinegun fired at an unknown range. Classified as WIA, second echelon type.

Case 30.-Penetrating wounds of the left upper extremity. This man was on patrol when he was struck by bullets from a .25 caliber sniper's rifle at an unknown range. Classifled as WIA, first echelon type.

Case 31.-Multiple, moderately severe penetrating wounds of the face and head. This man, while on patrol, was in a kneeling position firing his rifle when it was struck by a .25 caliber rifle bullet. Numerous small metal fragments penetrated his face and forehead. Classified as WIA, immediate duty type.

On 25 July, the following casualties resulted from a U.S. artillery barrage:

Case 32.-Severe penetrating wound of the head. This man was in a foxhole when an American artillery shell burst directly overhead. A fragment of the shell passed through his helmet. Classified as KIA, died 10 minutes after injury.

Case 33.-Moderately severe lacerating wound of the left shoulder region. This man was wounded under circumstances similar to those of Case 32. Classified as WIA, first echelon type.

Case 34.-Moderately severe penetrating wound of the right foot. This man was wounded under circumstances similar to those of Case 32. Classified as WIA, second echelon type.

Cases 35 and 36.-Both these casualties sustained moderately severe penetrating wounds of the thorax and the legs. These men were wounded under circumstances similar to those of Case 32. Classified as WIA, second echelon type.

On 26 July, a small combat patrol was sent to take prisoners from an isolated enemy dugout. If the activity of the patrol had been properly planned, all of the following casualties might have been avoided:

Case 37.-Multiple small arms wounds of the thorax and abdomen. This man, while on patrol, was just climbing over a log in thick jungle when he was struck by a burst of .25 caliber light machinegun fire at a range of approximately 25 to 50 yards. Classified as KIA.

Case 38.-Severe penetrating wound of the head. This man, while on patrol, was standing behind the tree attempting to point out the enemy when he was struck by a burst of .25 caliber machinegun fire. Classified as KIA.

Case 39.-Severe penetrating wounds of the head. This man was in a prone position attempting to throw a grenade when he was struck by fragments from a Japanese grenade and by machinegun fire. The range was approximately 35 yards. Classified as WIA, U.S. evacuation type.

Case 40.-Multiple, severe penetrating wounds of the lower part of the abdomen and the lower extremities. This man was a member of an advancing patrol when he was struck by fragments from a Japanese grenade. After sustaining his injuries, the soldier walked 200 yards to the regimental aid station where he received primary treatment. He was evacuated immediately but died 28 hours later without having received any surgical treatment. He received 1 unit of plasma. This man was classified as DOW, 28 hours' survival.

Case 41.-Moderately severe lacerating wound of the right leg. This man was on patrol when he was struck by fragments of a Japanese hand grenade. Classified as WIA, first echelon type.

Case 42.-Moderately severe penetrating wound of the left thigh. This man was on patrol when he was struck by fragments of a Japanese hand grenade. Classified as WIA, second echelon type.

On 28 July, the following casualties occurred:

Case 43.-Mild penetrating wounds of the left leg. This man was in a shallow foxhole when he was struck by fragments from an American artillery shell which burst at a 75- to 100-yard range. Classified as WIA, immediate duty type.


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Case 44.-Mild lacerating wound of the left arm. This man was wounded under circumstances similar to those of Case 43.

Case 45.-Severe penetrating wound of the right side of the face. This man was wounded under circumstances similar to those of Case 43. Classified as WIA, U.S. evacuation type.

Cases 46 through 49.-All these soldiers sustained multiple penetrating and perforating wounds due to .25 caliber light machinegun fire. Three of the men were killed instantly and the fourth was bayoneted to death several hours after receiving his primary wound. The machinegun range was from 50 to 100 yards. All of these men had been sent out to recover the bodies of two dead engineers. This entire action had been poorly planned and ill-advised.

Case 50.-Moderately severe laceration of the nose. This man was wounded under circumstances similar to those of Cases 46 through 49. Classified as WIA, U.S. evacuation type.

Case 51.-Severe perforating wound of the head. This man was killed under circumstances similar to those of Cases 46 through 49. Classified as KIA.

Case 52.-Severe mutilating wound of the right arm and moderately severe penetrating wounds of the thorax. This man was on offensive action, walking single file down an open trail, when a U.S. hand grenade exploded accidentally in front of him. Classified as DOW, lived 7 hours after injury. This casualty was due to careless handling of the grenade and, probably, to poor medical treatment.

Case 53.-Severe mutilation of the head and face. This man was on offensive action crawling toward an enemy machinegun emplacement when he was struck by a burst of .25 caliber machinegun fire at a 20-yard range. Classified as KIA. The platoon to which this soldier belonged had become disorganized, and this man did not receive any support in his attack on the enemy emplacement.

Cases 54, 55, and 56.-All of these men received multiple, minor penetrating wounds of the head and the extremities. These men were in a prone position in a foxhole when three enemy hand grenades were thrown into the foxhole. Two of the grenades were thrown out but the third exploded and wounded the men. All of these men were members of a mortar section that was not receiving adequate protection from a rifle squad, and their foxhole was poorly located. Classified as WIA.

Case 57.-No record of this casualty, very minor wound.

Case 58.-Moderately severe penetrating wound to the right forearm. This man was in a position similar to that of Case 54 and was wounded by enemy grenade fragments. Classified as WIA, second echelon type.

Case 59.-Severe perforating wound of the head. This man, in an unprotected foxhole with three other members of a mortar crew, was struck by a .25 caliber rifle bullet at a 25-to 50-yard range. Classified as KIA.

Case 60.-Severe perforating wound of the head. This man was killed under circumstances similar to those of Case 59.

Case 61.-Severe perforating wound of the right leg. This man was walking about the perimeter organizing the defense when he was struck by a burst of .25 caliber light machine gun fire. He was wounded at 1700 hours on 28 July but was not evacuated until 0700 hours on 29 July. Classified as WIA, U.S. evacuation type.

Case 62.-Moderately severe penetrating wound of the left leg. This man was on defensive action when he was struck by a bullet from a .25 caliber Japanese rifle. Classified as WIA, second echelon type.

Case 63.-Moderately severe laceration of the head. This man was struck by a Japanese rifle bullet. The bullet perforated his helmet. Classified as WIA, immediate duty type.

Case 64.-Penetrating wound of the head. This man was in a foxhole when he was struck by a Japanese rifle bullet. Classified as WIA, second echelon type.


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Case 65.-Multiple penetrating and perforating wounds of the right upper extremity and a penetrating wound of the head. This man was in a foxhole when he was struck by a burst of enemy light machinegun fire. Classified as WIA, U.S. evacuation type, and was returned to duty in 8 months.

On 29 July the 1st Battalion sustained the following casualty:

Case 66.-Severe perforating wound of the right hand. This man was in a foxhole when he accidentally discharged his own rifle. He was wounded at 1800 hours on 29 July and was evacuated at 1200 hours on 1 August. Classified as WIA, U.S. evacuation type. This casualty could have been avoided.

On 30 July heavy casualties were sustained:

Case 67.-Moderately severe penetrating wound of the left leg. This man, while on an offensive action, was advancing in a crouch position when he was struck by a Japanese rifle bullet at a range of approximately 50 to 100 yards. He was wounded at 1400 hours on 30 July and was evacuated at 1200 hours on 1 August. Classified as WIA, second echelon type.

Case 68.-Severe perforating wound of the thorax. This man was wounded under circumstances similar to those of Case 67. Following his injury, the soldier walked 100 yards to the aid station. Classified as WIA, second echelon type.

Case 69.-Moderately severe penetrating wound of the left shoulder. This man was wounded under circumstances similar to those of Case 67. Classified as WIA, second echelon type.

Case 70.-Severe penetrating wound of the left hand. This man was wounded under circumstances similar to those of Case 67. Classified as WIA, second echelon type.

Case 71.-Severe penetrating wound of the left forearm and the left leg. This man was on offensive action in a crawling position when he was struck by fragments from a Japanese hand grenade at a 1-yard range. Classified as WIA, U.S. evacuation type.

Case 72.-Severe penetrating wound of the left thigh. This man was on offensive action in a crawling position when he was struck by enemy light machinegun fire at a 50- to 75-yard range. Classified as WIA, second echelon type.

Case 73.-Moderately severe penetrating wound of the head and face. This man was in a foxhole on defensive action during a Japanese counterattack when he was struck by fire from an enemy light machinegun. One bullet perforated his helmet. After being wounded, he was able to walk back to the aid station. Classified as WIA, first echelon type.

Case 74.-Moderately severe penetrating wound of the left leg. This man was wounded by fire from an enemy light machinegun. Classified as WIA, U.S. evacuation type.

Case 75.-Severe penetrating wound of the head. This man was crawling toward an enemy machinegun emplacement and continued to advance alone even after orders had been given for a withdrawal. He was struck by fire from the machinegun at a 25-yard range. Classified as KIA. Deafness probably was responsible for the death of this casualty.

Case 76.-Severe perforating wound of the head. This man was standing in a foxhole telephoning when he was struck by a rifle bullet at a 75- to 100-yard range. Classified as KIA. This casualty could have been avoided.

Case 77.-Multiple, severe perforating and penetrating wounds of the thorax and the upper and lower extremities. This man had just left his foxhole located on the defensive perimeter in attempt to contact the division when he was struck by a burst of enemy light machinegun fire. Classified as WIA, U.S. evacuation type.

Case 78.-Moderately severe penetrating wound of the left foot. This man was struck by an enemy rifle bullet at a range of approximately 50 yards. Classified as WIA, second echelon type.

Cases 79 and 80.-Minor wounds, no records available.


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Case 81.-Mild penetrating wound of the left thigh. This man was in a crawling position when he was struck by an enemy rifle bullet at a range of approximately 50 yards. Classified as WIA, immediate duty type.

Case 82.-Severe penetrating wound of the left thigh. This man was in a foxhole when he was struck by an enemy rifle bullet at a 75-yard range. Classified as WIA, second echelon type.

Case 83.-Minor, severe penetrating wound of the right leg. This man was on offensive action advancing against the enemy when he was struck by an enemy rifle bullet at a range of approximately 75 yards. Classified as WIA, second echelon type.

Case 84.-Multiple penetrating wounds of the face. This man was on offensive action standing in moderately thick jungle when he was struck by fragments from an enemy knee mortar shell. Classified as WIA, second echelon type.

Case 85.-Moderately severe penetrating wounds of the right leg. This man was wounded under circumstances similar to those of Case 84. Classified as WIA, second echelon type.

Case 86.-Severe perforating wound of the abdomen. This man was on offensive action advancing in a crouched position through moderately thick jungle terrain when he was struck by a machinegun bullet at a range of approximately 75 yards. Classified as DOW, died 30 minutes after being hit.

Case 87.-Multiple, moderately severe penetrating wounds of the right lower extremity. This man was on offensive action crawling through thick jungle terrain when he was struck by fragments from an enemy hand grenade thrown from a tree. The grenade detonated a few feet away from the casualty. Classified as WIA, first echelon type.

Case 88.-Multiple, moderately severe penetrating wounds of the left upper and lower extremities. This man was wounded under circumstances similar to those of Case 87. Classified as WIA, first echelon type.

Case 89.-Severe penetrating wound of the right shoulder region. This man was advancing in a standing position in moderately thick jungle terrain when he was struck by an enemy rifle bullet at a range of approximately 75 yards. Classified as WIA, second echelon type.

Case 90.-Perforating wound of the right foot. This man was on offensive action advancing through moderately thick jungle when he was struck by an enemy rifle bullet at a 75-yard range. Classified as WIA, first echelon type.

Case 91.-Moderately severe lacerating wound of the left leg. This man was struck by an enemy rifle bullet at a 75-yard range. Classified as WIA, second echelon type.

Case 92.-Multiple, severe perforating wounds of the abdomen. This man was on offensive action advancing in a crouched position through moderately thick jungle when he was struck by a burst from an enemy light machinegun at a 50- to 100-yard range. Classified as DOW, lived 1 hour after injury.

Case 93.-Multiple, severe perforating wounds of the thorax. This man was wounded under circumstances similar to those of Case 92. Classified as KIA.

Case 94.-Severe perforating wound of the thorax. This man, standing in a foxhole telephoning, was warned to take cover when he was struck by an enemy rifle bullet at a range of approximately 100 to 200 yards. Classified as KIA. This casualty could have been avoided.

Case 95.-Severe perforating wound of the thorax. This man was struck by fragments from an enemy mortar shell at an unknown range. Classified as WIA, U.S. evacuation type.

Case 96.-Severe perforating wound of the abdomen and multiple, mild penetrating wounds of the right thigh. This man was walking in the perimeter to deliver a message when he was struck by fragments of the same mortar shell which struck Case 95. Classified as DOW, died 9 days after injury.

Case 97.-Severe mutilation of the head. This man had been assisting in the digging of a hole for a machinegun emplacement when he left the protection of the hole and moved


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a few feet away. He was struck by a burst from an enemy light machinegun at a range of approximately 50 to 100 yards. Classified as KIA. This man should not have left the protection of his foxhole.

Case 98.-Perforating wound of the neck. This man was standing in a foxhole in proximity to the aid station when he was struck by an enemy rifle bullet at a 75-yard range. Classified as WIA, second echelon type. This area had been under fire from enemy snipers, and this man should not have been standing in an exposed position.

Case 99.-Multiple penetrating wounds of the face and of the upper extremities. This man was firing his rifle when it was struck by an enemy rifle bullet. Numerous small metal fragments penetrated his face and arms. Classified as WIA, second echelon type.

Case 100.-Moderately severe penetrating wound of the posterior portion of the right thigh. This man was entering a foxhole when he accidentally sat on the tip of a bayonet. Classified as WIA, first echelon type.

On 31 July the following casualties occurred:

Case 101.-Minor wound, no record available.

Case 102.-Severe perforating wound of the abdomen. This man was in a foxhole on defensive action when he got up to obtain ammunition. He was struck by enemy light machinegun fire at a 50- to 100-yard range. Classified as DOW, died 2 days after injury.

Case 103.-Severe penetrating wound of the abdomen and moderately severe penetrating wound of the left shoulder. This man had already prepared one foxhole when he was told to dig a new one. It was obvious he was to dig this new hole in a lane of enemy fire, and he attempted to avoid this new order. Shortly after, he was struck in the shoulder by an enemy light machinegun bullet and, as he was being moved to the aidman's hole, he received the abdominal wound. This man received no treatment other than morphine and died after 2 hours in the aidman's foxhole. Classified as DOW, with a 2-hour survival. This casualty probably could have been avoided.

Case 104.-Severe penetrating wound of the left side of the thorax. This man was digging a foxhole when he was struck by an enemy light machinegun bullet at the same time as Case 103. He was treated by the aidman but died 2 hours later. Classified as DOW, with a 2-hour survival time.

Case 105.-Severe penetrating wound of the abdomen. This man was returning from patrol and was approaching the aidman's foxhole when he was struck by an enemy light machinegun bullet. He received treatment from the aidman but died in 1 hour. Classified as DOW, with a 1-hour survival.

Case 106.-Moderately severe penetrating wounds of the right leg. This man was on offensive action advancing toward the Japanese line in a crouched position when he was struck by an enemy light machinegun bullet at a 15-yard range. After this man received his wound, he became confused and crawled toward the enemy line. He was pulled into a Japanese foxhole, and when his body was recovered it was found that he had been strangled to death by a rope. Classified as KIA.

Case 107.-Multiple, superficial penetrating wounds of the face. This man was advancing toward the enemy lines when he was struck by numerous fragments from a Japanese hand grenade. Classified as WIA, first echelon type.

Case 108.-Moderately severe penetrating wound of the right arm. This man was advancing toward the enemy line when he was struck by an enemy rifle bullet. Classified as WIA, first echelon type.

Case 109.-Moderately severe penetrating wound of the neck. This man was in a foxhole furnishing machinegun fire for the advancing troops when he was struck by a Japanese rifle bullet. Classified as WIA, first echelon type.

Cases 110 and 111.-Minor wounds, no records available.

Case 112.-Severe penetrating wound of the left shoulder. This man was struck by fragments of an enemy hand grenade at an unknown range. Classified as WIA, first echelon type.


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Case 113.-Severe penetrating wound of the right hand. This man was advancing toward the enemy line when he accidentally fell and discharged his M1 rifle. Classified as WIA, second echelon type. This casualty could have been avoided.

Case 114.-Severe perforating wound of the right thigh and laceration of the left buttock. This man was on defensive action and left his foxhole to procure rations when he was struck by an enemy machinegun bullet at a 100- to 150-yard range. Classified as WIA, second echelon type.

Case 115.-Minor laceration of the head. This man was in his foxhole on defensive action when a Japanese rifle bullet passed through his helmet and lacerated his scalp. Classified as WIA, second echelon type.

On 1 August 1943, all Japanese resistance described in tactical situation No. 3 (p. 769) ended at 1200 hours. During the later stages of this engagement, Company A, 1st Battalion, was very successful and was able to knock out a light machinegun and several heavy U.S. machineguns which the Japanese had taken from the 169th Infantry. The Japanese, who were dressed in U.S. uniforms and helmets, also used other U.S. equipment.

Fifteen enemy dead were found in the area, and considerable numbers of Japanese were known to have escaped into the jungle. The 1st Battalion sustained 18 casualties, as follows:

Case 116.-Moderately severe perforating wound of the thorax. This man was on offensive action and was advancing with his machinegun crew when a Japanese light machinegun opened fire. While attempting to take cover in a shellhole, the soldier was struck by an enemy light machinegun bullet as he was assuming the prone position. Classified as WIA, second echelon type.

Case 117.-Moderately severe penetrating wound of the left forearm. This man was wounded under circumstances similar to those of Case 116. Classified as WIA, second echelon type.

Case 118.-Severe penetrating wound of the head. This man was advancing against the enemy lines and was wounded under circumstances similar to those of Case 116. Classified as WIA, second echelon type.

Case 119.-Severe mutilation of the head. This man was on offensive action and was taking cover behind a tree when he was struck by a burst from an enemy light machinegun. Classified as KIA.

Case 120.-Moderately severe penetrating wound of the neck. This man was struck by an enemy rifle bullet at a 50- to 100-yard range. Classified as WIA, immediate duty type.

Case 121.-Minor laceration of the thorax. This man was on offensive action when an enemy machinegun bullet ricocheted off his helmet. After taking cover, he was wounded by a fragment from an enemy hand grenade. Classified as WIA, immediate duty type.

Case 122.-Severe penetrating wound of the head. This man was struck by an enemy light machinegun bullet. Classified as KIA, death occurred in 10 minutes.

Case 123.-Mild laceration of the thorax. This man was struck by a fragment from an enemy hand grenade at an unknown range. Classified as WIA, first echelon type.

Case 124.-Severe perforating wound of the right foot. This man, while in a prone position, was attempting to kick away an enemy hand grenade which had fallen near him. Classified as WIA, U.S. evacuation type.

Cases 125 and 126.-Minor wounds, no records available.

Case 127.-Moderately severe penetrating wound of the left buttock. This man was near the frontline of the perimeter when he was struck by fragments from an enemy hand grenade at an unknown range. Classified as WIA, first echelon type.

Case 128.-Moderately severe laceration of the face. This man, a member of a mortar crew, was struck by an enemy rifle bullet at a range of 150 yards. Classified as WIA, immediate duty type.

Case 129.-Moderately severe penetrating wound of the right leg. This man was on defensive action and accidentally stabbed himself with his own bayonet. Classified as WIA, second echelon type. This casualty could have been avoided.


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Case 130.-Minor wounds, no record available.

Case 131.-Moderately severe penetrating wound of the left shoulder region. This man was in a shallow foxhole on defensive action 2 yards from the battalion aid station. He was struck by an enemy light machinegun bullet. Classified as WIA, second echelon type.

Cases 132 and 133.-Minor wound, no records available.

Tactical Situation No. 5, 2-5 August 1943

After the 1st Battalion broke through the Japanese trail block leading to the ration dump area (p. 772), they spent the night in regimental reserve. The next morning, they started their march back to their old position on the right flank of the advancing troops. The position for the night was taken up in an area approximately 500 yards to the north of Biblo Hill, astride the Bairoko trail.

During the early morning of 3 August, three men were wounded by a Japanese hand grenade thrown into their foxhole. Six other casualties were sustained during the day's advance of approximately 1,000 yards on the 270 azimuth.

During the night of 3-4 August, a Japanese platoon casually and unintentionally marched into the section of the perimeter held by Company A, 1st Battalion. The ensuing fighting continued most of the night. In the morning, 30 enemy dead were found lying in the area, as well as a wounded Japanese soldier.

There were no U.S. casualties. The men had thrown their hand grenades and fired their weapons while lying on their backs in their foxholes. They thus exploded the myth that weapons must not be used in the perimeter at night.

Before the 1st Battalion moved on toward the beach 1,000 yards north of Munda airfield, eight casualties resulted from a Japanese automatic weapon that had been brought up to the perimeter by six of the enemy. On 4 August, the battalion sustained comparatively heavy casualties with 26 WIA, 2 DOW, and 8 KIA. Four men were wounded on 4 August, at 0800 hours, when a heavy U.S. artillery barrage was thrown up.

At 1300 hours, the battalion began its drive to the coast through thick jungle and swamp. All casualties were the result of automatic weapons and rifle fire, with two exceptions: One soldier was wounded by a boobytrap and another was killed by friendly mortar fire.

The beach was reached shortly before dark and the perimeter set up. Three Japanese 90 mm. mortar shells fell in the area during the night, killing two men and wounding ten others.

This brought to a conclusion the fighting done by the 1st Battalion on New Georgia Island.

The battalion sustained 48 casualties during the 2-5 August action, as follows:

Cases 134 and 135.-Minor wounds, no records available.

Case 136.-Multiple, mild penetrating wounds of the abdomen and lower extremities. This man was sleeping in a foxhole when he was wounded by fragments from a Japanese hand grenade which exploded over the hole. Classified as WIA, first echelon type.

Cases 137 and 138.-These men sustained multiple, mild penetrating wounds of the thorax, the abdomen, and the lower extremities. These men were in the same foxhole with Case 136 and were wounded by the fragments of a Japanese hand grenade. Classified as WIA.

Case 139.-Severe penetrating wound of the left eye by a fragment of a Japanese hand grenade. Classified as WIA, U.S. evacuation type. The eye was removed at a later date.

Case 140.-Severe mutilation of the right hand. This man was on offensive action advancing in a crouched position when he was struck by a Japanese rifle bullet at a range of approximately 25 to 50 yards. Classified as WIA, U.S. evacuation type.

Case 141.-Multiple, mild penetrating wounds of the upper extremities. This man, while standing behind a tree, was struck by fragments of a Japanese hand grenade at an unknown range. Classified as WIA, immediate duty type.


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Case 142.-Penetrating wound of the thorax. This man was advancing toward the enemy line when he was struck by a fragment from a Japanese hand grenade. Classified as WIA, second echelon type.

Case 143.-Moderate, severe penetrating wound of the left arm. This man was wounded under circumstances similar to those of Case 142. Classified as WIA, first echelon type.

Case 144.-Moderately severe penetrating wound of the left arm. This man was in a crawling position under protective fire when he was struck by a U.S. machinegun bullet. Classified as WIA, second echelon type.

Case 145.-Moderately severe penetrating wound of the left leg. This man, while crawling toward the enemy line, was struck by an enemy machinegun bullet. Classified as WIA, first echelon type.

Case 146.-Multiple, moderately severe penetrating wounds of the left shoulder. This man was in a prone position in a shallow foxhole when he was struck by fragments from an American artillery shell which burst at a 50-yard range. Classified as WIA, second echelon type.

Cases 147, 148, 149, 150, 151.-All of these casualties sustained penetrating wounds of the upper and lower extremities. These wounds were received under circumstances similar to those of Case 146. The shellburst from the American artillery shell was estimated at 25 to 50 yards. All of the men were classified as WIA.

The casualties described as Cases 152 through 158 were all due to the carelessness of Company C, which allowed an enemy light machinegun crew to penetrate to the edge of its perimeter.

Case 152.-Severe penetrating wound of the abdomen. This man was in defensive action lying in a prone position in the aid station when an enemy light machinegun bullet struck his ammunition belt. Classified as WIA, second echelon type.

Case 153.-Moderately severe penetrating wound of the thorax. This man was sitting in a foxhole when he was struck by an enemy light machinegun bullet at a 50-yard range.

Case 154.-Minor laceration of the head. This man was in a prone position on the ground when he was struck by an enemy light machinegun bullet at a 50-yard range. Classified as WIA, second echelon type.

Case 155.-Severe perforating wound of the thorax. This man was kneeling in a foxhole dressing another soldier's wound when he was struck by an enemy light machinegun bullet at a 50-yard range. Classified as WIA, U.S. evacuation type.

Case 156.-Severe mutilation of the abdomen and the right upper extremity. This man was in a standing position when he was struck by a burst of fire from an enemy light machinegun at a 50-yard range. He was evacuated 300 yards, and 2 hours later, at the collection company, he was given 2 units of plasma. The soldier died within 18 hours at the 17th Field Hospital without surgical treatment.. Classified as DOW, with an 18-hour survival.

Case 157.-Multiple, severe penetrating and perforating wounds of the abdomen and the lower extremities. This man was wounded under circumstances similar to those of Case 156. Classified as DOW with a 3-hour survival.

Case 158.-Multiple, severe penetrating and perforating wounds of the thorax. This man was wounded under circumstances similar to those of Case 156. Classified as KIA.

Case 159.-Moderately severe penetrating wound of the right hand. This man was on offensive action advancing against the enemy when an enemy light machinegun bullet passed through his canteen and penetrated his hand. The estimated range was 50 yards. Classified as WIA, immediate duty type.

Case 160.-Minor laceration of the knee. This soldier was on offensive action when he stopped to tamper with a boobytrap which had been recognized and marked. He was wounded by fragments from the hand grenade which made up the boobytrap. Classified as WIA, second echelon type. This casualty could have been avoided.


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Case 161.-Moderately severe penetrating wound of the right thigh. This man was in a standing position on offensive action when he was struck by an enemy light machinegun bullet. Classified as WIA, first echelon type.

Case 162.-Minor laceration of the right leg. This man was struck by a U.S. rifle bullet. Classified as WIA, immediate duty type.

Case 163.-Severe penetrating wound of the head. This man was on offensive action when he stopped to pick up a cigarette butt. He was struck by an enemy light machinegun bullet. Classified as KIA. This casualty could have been avoided.

Case 164.-Severe penetrating wound of the thorax. This man was advancing against enemy lines when two American mortar shells fell short of the skirmish line. The first shell was a dud and did not explode, but the second shell exploded within several yards from this casualty. Classified as KIA. This casualty was due to carelessness on the part of the adjacent companies which did not maintain contact with each other.

Case 165.-Moderately severe penetrating wound of the left foot. This man was on offensive action advancing in a crouched position when he was struck by a Japanese light machinegun bullet at a 20- to 50-yard range. Classified as WIA, first echelon type.

Case 166.-Severe perforating wound of the thorax. This man was advancing in a standing position against the Japanese pillbox when he was struck by a light machinegun bullet. Classified as KIA.

Case 167.-Severe perforating wound of the thorax. This man was wounded under circumstances similar to those of Case 166. Classified as KIA.

Case 168.-Severe perforating wound of the thorax. This man was wounded under circumstances similar to those of Case 166. Classified as KIA, died within 10 minutes.

Case 169.-Minor wounds, no records available.

Case 170.-Multiple, severe perforating wounds of the left thigh. This man was digging a shallow foxhole in the company area when an enemy mortar shell burst at a 3-yard range. Classified as WIA, U.S. evacuation type.

Case 171.-Moderately severe penetrating wound of the right buttock. This man was digging a foxhole with Case 170 and was wounded by a fragment from an enemy mortar shell. Classified as WIA, first echelon type.

Case 172.-Moderately severe penetrating wound of the left shoulder area. This man was in a standing position digging a foxhole when he was wounded by a fragment from an enemy mortar shell. Classified as WIA, first echelon type.

Case 173.-Multiple, severe penetrating wounds of the head, neck, and shoulder. This man was sleeping in a very shallow foxhole when an enemy mortar shell struck 3 feet from his head. Classified as KIA.

Case 174.-Multiple penetrating wounds of the abdomen and the left lower extremity. This man was in the same foxhole with Case 173 and was wounded by fragments from a Japanese mortar shell. Since it was very dark and rainy, this man was not located for 10 minutes, and his abdominal wounds received initial treatment before it was found that he was bleeding from a lacerated femoral artery. He died from hemorrhage in about 15 minutes. Classified as KIA.

Case 175.-Multiple penetrating wound of the thorax and the upper and lower extremities. This man was sleeping in a foxhole adjacent to Cases 173 and 174 and was wounded by fragments from the same enemy mortar shell, which burst at a 1-yard range. Classified as WIA, first echelon type.

Cases 176 through 181.-All these men were in shallow foxholes at a 2- to 10-yard distance from the enemy mortar shellburst which caused casualties 173, 174, and 175. All classified as WIA, immediate duty type.

 

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