Ernie Pyle

Discussion in 'Biographies' started by liverpool annie, Apr 9, 2009.

  1. liverpool annie

    liverpool annie New Member

    In June 2008, 63 years after his death - a photo resurfaced - showing Pyle, shortly after his death. Ernie Pyle was one of 37 American correspondents to die in WW2.

    On April 18, 1945 Pyle died on Ie Shima, an island off Okinawa Honto, after being hit by Japanese machine gun fire. He was riding in a jeep with Lieutenant Colonel Joseph B. Coolidge (commanding officer of the 305th Infantry Regiment, 77th Infantry Division) and three other men. The road, which paralleled the beach two or three hundred yards inland, had been cleared of mines, and hundreds of vehicles had driven over it. As the vehicle reached a road junction, an enemy machine gun located on a coral ridge about a third of a mile away began firing at them. The men stopped their vehicle and jumped into a ditch. Pyle and Coolidge raised their heads to look around for the others; when they spotted them, Pyle smiled and asked Coolidge "Are you all right?" Those were his last words. The machine gun began shooting again, and Pyle was struck in the left temple (however, the Ernie Pyle State Historic Site in Dana, Indiana, contains a telegram from the Government to Pyle's father stating that Pyle was killed by a sniper). In any case, the colonel called for a medic, but there were none present. Pyle had been killed instantly.
    He was buried with his helmet on, and laid to rest in a long row of graves among other soldiers, with an infantry private on one side and a combat engineer on the other. At the ten-minute service, the Navy, Marine Corps, and Army were all represented. Pyle was later reburied at the Army cemetery on Okinawa, then moved to the National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific located in Honolulu. When Okinawa was returned to Japanese control after the war, the Ernie Pyle monument was one of only three American memorials allowed to remain in place. Pyle was among the few American civilians killed during the war to be awarded the Purple Heart medal.

    Ernie Pyle (1900 - 1945) - Find A Grave Memorial
  2. Golden Wattle

    Golden Wattle New Member

    Hi LA,
    He was certainly one of the most famous "Non Military" persons during the war.

    I found this in a report on him:
    Pyle didn't embellish. He didn't have to because of his ability to see stories. Only on a few occasions did someone complain about the accuracy of a Pyle story. On those occasions Pyle could reach back in his mind and look back at the "recordings" in his brain and recall practically word for word, picture for picture, what had happened.

    The "average American Soldier" loved his writings.


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