Welcome to the Scuttlebutt

We strive to provide information  to local veterans and share a little bit about life in the military. 

75 years ago, during the battle of Saipan, Marines were joined by U.S. Army reinforcements and began pushing inland toward Aslito Airfield and Japanese forces in the southern and central parts of the island. On June 18, American troops continued to spread out across the island even as their offshore naval protection departed to head off the Japanese Imperial Fleet that had been sent to aid in the defense of Saipan. By early July, the forces of Lieutenant General Yoshitsugu Saito, the Japanese commander on Saipan, had retreated to the northern part of the island, where they were trapped by American land, sea and air power. Saito had expected the Japanese navy to help him drive the Americans from the island, but the Imperial Fleet had suffered a devastating defeat in the Battle of the Philippine Sea (June 19-20, 1944) and never arrived at Saipan. Realizing he could no longer hold out against the American onslaught, Saito apologized to Tokyo for failing to defend Saipan and committed ritual suicide. Before his death, however, Saito ordered his remaining troops to launch an all-out, surprise attack for the honor of the emperor. Early on the morning of July 6, an estimated 4,000 Japanese soldiers shouting “Banzai!” charged with grenades, bayonets, swords and knives against an encampment of soldiers and Marines near Tanapag Harbor. In wave after wave, the Japanese overran parts of several U.S. battalions, engaging in hand-to-hand combat and killing or wounding more than a thousand Americans before being repelled by howitzers and point-blank machine-gun fire. It was the largest banzai charge of the Pacific war, and, as was the nature of such an attack, most Japanese troops fought to their death. However, the suicidal maneuver failed to turn the tide of the battle, and on July 9, U.S. forces raised the American flag in victory over Saipan. The invasion of Saipan had been on 15 June 1944, with landings on Guam tentatively set for 18 June. The original timetable proved to be too optimistic, however. A large Japanese carrier attack and stubborn resistance by the unexpectedly large Japanese garrison on Saipan led to the invasion of Guam being postponed for a month.: Saipan, Tinian, and Guam had been chosen as the targets due to their size, their suitability as a base for supporting the next stage of operations toward the Philippines, Taiwan, and the Ryukyu Islands. The seaport at Apra Harbor was suitable for the largest ships; and air bases to launch aircraft for support missions The Second Battle of Guam (21 July – 10 August 1944) was the American recapture of the Japanese-held island of Guam, a U.S. territory in the Mariana Islands captured by the Japanese from the U.S. in the 1941 First Battle of Guam. Ringed by reefs, cliffs, and heavy surf, Guam presents a formidable challenge for any attacker. Underwater demolition teams reconnoitered the beaches and removed obstacles from 14–17 July. Despite the obstacles, on 21 July, the American forces landed on both sides of the Orote Peninsula on the western side of Guam, planning to secure Apra Harbor. The 3rd Marine Division landed near Agana to the north of Orote at 08:29, and the 1st Provisional Marine Brigade landed near Agat to the south. Japanese artillery sank 20 U.S. LVTs and inflicted heavy casualties on the landing troops, but by 09:00 marines and tanks were ashore at both beaches. By nightfall, the U.S. Marines, and soldiers of the 77th Infantry Division had established beachheads about 6,600 feet deep. Japanese counterattacks were made throughout the first few days of the battle, mostly at night, using infiltration tactics. The Japanese penetrated the American defenses several times but were driven back with heavy losses of men and equipment. Next week, we will continue the battle of the Marianas Islands which was key to providing a base from which the U.S. could launch its new long-range B-29 bombers directly at Japan’s home islands.  If you know of a current veteran, or their family, who is having trouble and needs some help, please contact us at the numbers listed below. At the very least, please, be kind others and PRAY FOR PEACE! 



For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty as an automatic rifleman serving with the 2d Battalion, 3d Marines, 3d Marine Division, in action against enemy Japanese forces on the Asan-Adelup Beachhead, Guam, Marianas Islands on 22 July 1944. Suddenly taken under fire by two enemy machine guns not more than 15 yards away while clearing out hostile positions holding up the advance of his platoon through a narrow gully, Pfc. Mason, alone and entirely on his own initiative, climbed out of the gully and moved parallel to it toward the rear of the enemy position. Although fired upon immediately by hostile riflemen from a higher position and wounded repeatedly in the arm and shoulder, Pfc. Mason grimly pressed forward and had just reached his objective when hit again by a burst of enemy machine gun fire, causing a critical wound to which he later succumbed.  With valiant disregard for his own peril, he persevered, clearing out the hostile position, killing five Japanese, wounding another and then rejoining his platoon to report the results of his action before consenting to be evacuated. His exceptionally heroic act in the face of almost certain death enabled his platoon to accomplish its mission and reflects the highest credit upon Pfc. Mason and the U.S. Marines. He gallantly gave his life for his country.


News Bulletins 

Army IDs Decorated Sergeant Major Killed in Afghanistan www.military.com  July 14

FORT BRAGG, N.C. (AP) — A decorated Special Forces company sergeant major has died during combat in Afghanistan. James G. “Ryan” Sartor, 40, was killed Saturday during combat operations in Faryab Province, according to Lt. Col. Loren Bymer, spokesman for the U.S. Army Special Operations Command. We’re incredibly saddened to learn of Sgt. Maj. James ‘Ryan’ Sartor’s passing in Afghanistan. Ryan was a beloved warrior who epitomized the quiet professional,” Col. Brian R. Rauen, commander of the 10th Special Forces Group, said in a statement. “He led his Soldiers from the front and his presence will be terribly missed.” Bymer said he couldn’t provide any further details about the circumstances that led to Sartor’s death. The incident is under investigation.


Flags at Highway Patrol Highlight issue of veteran suicides- St Joseph News-press Jul 10

A display on the lawn of the Missouri. SHP Troop H headquarters in St Joseph is highlighting the terrible toll that war takes on our soldiers. There are 660 flags displayed reflecting the number of suicides each month (22 Deaths per day). “Each flag represents a man or woman who felt that there was no other choice for them to end their pain other than suicide” according to organizer Lynn Brown.  “One of the main goals is to let families know that their loved ones are not forgotten” she added. WE encourage oth3ers to get involved and support veteran groups like our local American Legion and the VFW.

Upcoming Events and Meetings 

American Legion – 2nd Thursday at Legion Hall meeting at 1900

VFW – 3rd Monday of month at Cameron Veteran’s Home Chapel -1900 hours

Contact information

For more information or to offer help: Contact Pat O’Connor (816) 575-2568

Veterans Clinic (CBOC) @ MVH (816) 632-1369

Veterans Crisis Hotline 1-800-273-8255

A good website is www.va.gov. It has some of the latest news information as well as explaining veteran benefits. Also try www.military.com. 


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My Cameron News

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P.O. Box 498
Cameron, MO 64429
PHONE: (816) 632-6543
FAX: (816) 632-4508
Email: editor@mycameronnews.com

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