13 May 16
From: Sergeant MacDaddy EDPI/MOS USMC
To: Whomever it concerns
Subj: SUMMARY OF WITH THE OLD BREED BY E. B. SLEDGE
1. Purpose. To provide a brief summary about With the Old Breed.
2. Summary. Eugene B. Sledge, also known as Sledgehammer, is a World War II veteran whom fought in two of the most vicious battles in Marine Corps history. The least of known battles, Peleliu Island, which many to this day still believe to be of unimportance and the battle for Okinawa. During rest and recovery time following the battle on Peleliu, Sledgehammer recognized war had changed his personality and outlook on life. Due to this, Sledge began to write personal memoirs and experiences starting with his initial training at Georgia Tech. With the Old Breed is personal experiences from the time he entered the Marine Corps to the day he got out, which would change him in many ways.
(a) Eugene signed up to join the Marine Corps in December 1942 in Marion, Alabama.
He entered into an officer’s training college called V-12 with hopes of becoming a United States Marine Officer. Sledge wanted to “fight the good fight” as he called it, but his parents did not want him to join the front lines directly. His father referred to the Marines on the front line as “cannon fodder”. Cannon Fodder’s were essentially Marines who were merely expendable during war. After the end of the first semester, Sledge found himself with many of his peers fed up with school. They did not “join the Marine Corps to sit out the war in college,” as he put it. As a result, Sledge and half of his college detachment flunked out of school so they could be sent to enlisted boot camp.
(b) In December of 1943 Sledge completed Marine Corps Recruit Training aboard Recruit
Depot San Diego, California before being sent to Camp Elliot for infantry training. Sledgehammer completed training as a 60mm motorman, then anxiously awaited his unit assignment. Assigned to Company K, 3rd...