Roving Reporter, Ernie Pyle

The Pittsburgh Press (April 22, 1945)

Love: They killed our pal Ernie, but we can help ‘his boys’

By Gilbert Love
Sunday, April 22, 1945

They killed Ernie Pyle – little inoffensive Ernie, who never harmed anyone in all his life.

He was our friend. We may never have seen him, but through his columns we knew him well. We suffered with him, were afraid with him, laughed and cried with him.

He took us to war with him, and because of this we knew how all our fine young men were living and dying. That was Ernie’s mission. It was his stern duty – the thing that forced him to go back to war, when he already had done more than his share, to meet his death on tiny Ie Island in the far Pacific.

What can we do?

What are we going to do about Ernie? We can’t go over there and take personal revenge on the Jap who took his life, although some of us felt a wild urge to do that when we heard the news of his death last Wednesday morning. We can’t do anything for Ernie himself.

But we can carry on his work.

The kind of people Ernie loved knew what to do when they heard of his death. Soldiers and workers began going to the Red Cross Blood Bank in the Wabash Building to give blood “for Ernie.” He couldn’t use it, of course, but his G.I.’s could.

Taking their cue from these special friends of Ernie’s, the Red Cross people designated this coming week at Ernie Pyle Week at the Blood Bank.

Anyone who wants to pay a small tribute to Ernie can walk into the Blood Bank any time between 9:45 a.m. and 5 p.m. Monday through Friday. For evening or Saturdays an appointment should be made by calling GRant 1680.

The Week is a perfect memorial to Ernie, the kind he would have liked. No sad music and orations for him. If folks wanted to do something nice for him, he’d like to have them do it for “his boys.”

And the boys need it. Despite mounting casualties, and increased need for blood plasma to save lives, smaller and smaller numbers of donors have been visiting the Blood Bank. The news is good, and it’s assumed that the war is over.

400 pints daily quota

It isn’t over for the soldiers who are being mowed down by the cornered Nazis, or for the soldiers and sailors and marines who are facing their greatest battles against Japan.

The Blood Bank in the Wabash Building has a quota of 400 pints of blood a day. Not since March 1, when the Allies were still battling on the approaches to Germany, has the quota been met. Since that time the average has been 300 a day, and last week not even that figure was reached.

Wherever Ernie Pyle is now, he would be very happy to know a Pittsburgh district residents thought enough of him to bring their donations of life-giving blood up to par, if only for one week.

Frequent appeals

While he was on the Italian front, Ernie sent an appeal to the home folks to give blood for plasma. And here are a few significant paragraphs that he wrote on November 21, 1944:

This fall I came home from France on a ship that carried 1,000 of our wounded American soldiers. About a fourth of them were terribly wounded stretcher cases. The rest were up and about. These others could walk, though among the walking were many legs and arms missing, many eyes that could not see.

Well, there was one hospitalized soldier who was near death on this trip. He was wounded internally, and the Army doctors were trying desperately, to keep him alive until we got to America. They operated several times, and they kept pouring plasma and whole blood into him constantly, until they ran out of whole blood.

Didn’t want stampede

I happened to be in the head doctor’s cabin at noon one day when he was talking about this boy. He said he had his other doctors at that moment going around the ship typing blood specimens from several of the ship’s officers, and from unwounded Army and Navy officers aboard. They were doing it almost surreptitiously, for they didn’t want it to get out that they needed blood.

And why didn’t they want it to get out? Because if it had, there would have been a stampede to the hospital ward by the other wounded men, offering their blood to this dying comrade. Think of that – a stampede of men themselves badly wounded, wanting to give their blood.

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Great stories he wrote provide best memorial to Ernie Pyle

Sunday, April 22, 1945

The best memorial to Ernie Pyle is what he wrote.

At a time when the nation, and especially the servicemen, are mourning the death of the man who yesterday was buried with five enlisted men on Ie Shima, we publish these excerpts from hi columns as examples of Ernie’s work.

In the front lines in Tunisia

I love the infantry because they are the underdogs. They are the mud-rain-frost-and-wind boys. They have no comforts, and they even learn to live without the necessities. And in the end, they are the guys that wars can’t be won without.

I wish you could see just one of the ineradicable pictures I have in my mind today. In this particular picture I am sitting among clumps of sword-grass on a steep and rocky hillside that we have just taken. We are looking out over a vast rolling country to the rear.

A narrow path comes like a ribbon over a hill miles away, down a long slope, across a creek, up a slope and over another hill.

All along the length of this ribbon there is now a thin line of men. For four days and nights they have fought hard, eaten little, washed none, and slept hardly at all. Their nights have been violent with attack, fright, butchery, and their days sleepless and miserable with the crash of artillery.

The men are walking. They are 50 feet apart for dispersal. Their walk is slow, for they are dead weary, as you can tell even when looking at them from behind. Every line and sag of their bodies speaks their inhuman exhaustion.

On their shoulders and backs they carry heavy steel tripods, machine-gun barrels, leaden boxes of ammunition. Their feet seem to sink into the ground from the overload they are bearing.

They don’t slouch. It is the terrible deliberation of each step that spells out their appalling tiredness. Their faces are black and unshaved. They are young men, but the grime and whiskers and exhaustion make them look middle-aged.

In their eyes as they pass is not hatred, not excitement, not despair, not the tonic of their victory – there is just the simple expression of being here as though they had been here doing this forever, and nothing else.

The line moves on, but it never ends. All afternoon men keep coming round the hill and vanishing eventually over the horizon. It is one long tired line of ant-like men.

There is an agony in your heart and you almost feel ashamed to look at them. They are just guys from Broadway and Main Street, but you wouldn’t remember them. They are too far away now. They are too tired. Their world can never be known to you, but if you could see them just once, just for an instant, you would know that no matter how hard people work back home they are not keeping pace with these infantrymen in Tunisia.

From Italy

War correspondents try not to think of how high their ratio of casualties has been in this war. At least they try not to think of it in terms of themselves, but Ray Clapper’s death sort of set us back on our heels. Somehow it always seemed impossible that anything could ever happen to him. It made us wonder who is next.

I think the most frequent comment in this area was one that would have made Ray proud. People said:

“The old story again. It’s always the best ones that get it.”

From London during the Nazi blitz

The thing I shall always remember above all the other things in my life is the monstrous loveliness of that one single view of London – London stabbed with great fires, shaken by explosions, its dark regions along the Thames sparkling with the pinpoints of white-hot bombs, all of it roofed over with a ceiling of pink that held bursting shells, balloons, flares and the grind of vicious engines.

These things all went together to make the most hateful most beautiful single scene I have ever known.

From San Francisco before his last trip

There’s nothing nice about the prospect of going back to war again. Anybody who has been in war and wants to go back is a plain fool in my book.

I’m certainly not going because I’ve got itchy feet again, or because I can’t stand America, or because there’s any mystic fascination about war that is drawing me back.

I’m going simply because there’s a war on and I’m part of it and I’ve known all the time I was going back. I’m going because I’ve got to, and I hate it…

Also from San Francisco

Friends warn me about all kinds of horrible diseases in the Pacific. About dysentery, and malaria, and fungus that gets in your ears and your intestines, and that horrible swelling disease known as elephantiasis.

Well, all I can say is that I’m God’s gift to germs. Those fungi will shout and leap for joy when I show up. Maybe I can play the Pied Piper role – maybe the germs will all follow me when I get there, and leave the rest of the boys free to fight.

So, what with disease, Japs, seasickness, and shot and shell – you see I’m not too overwhelmed with relief at starting out again.

But there’s one thing in my favor where I’m going; one thing that will make life bearable when all else is darkness and gloom. And that one thing is that, out in the Pacific, I’ll be good and stinking hot. Oh boy!

In Marianas, writing of cousin Jack Bales

Jack has had two jars of Indiana fried chicken from my Aunt Mary. She cans it and seals it in mason jars, and it’s wonderful. She sent me some in France, but I’d gone before it got there.

Jack took some of his fried chicken in his lunch over Tokyo one day. We Hoosiers sure do get around, even the chickens.

In Marianas, watching Superfortresses take off

Finally, they were all in the air, formed into flight, and vanished into the swallowing sky from which some would never return.

I had the same feeling watching the takeoff that I used to have before the start at Indianapolis. Here were a certain number of cars and men. Some of them you knew. They had built and trained for weeks for this day. At last, the time had come.

And in a few hours of desperate living, everything would be changed. You knew that within a few hours some would be glorious in victory, some would be defected in failures, some would be colorless “also rans,” and some – very probably – would be dead.

And that’s the way you feel when the B-29s start out. It is just up to fate. In 15 hours, they will be back – those who are coming back. But you cannot know ahead of time who it will be.

Off Okinawa the night before D-Day

This is the last column before the invasion. It is written aboard a troop transport the evening before we storm onto Okinawa.

We are nervous. Anybody with any sense is nervous on the right before D-Day. You feel weak and you try to think of things, but your mind stubbornly drifts back to the awful image of tomorrow. It drags on your soul and you have nightmares.

But those fears do not mean any lack of confidence. We will take Okinawa. Nobody has any doubt about that. But we know we will have to pay for it. some on this ship will not be alive 24 hours from now…

Our ship is an APA, or assault transport…

We are carrying Marines. Some of them are going into combat for the first time. Others are veterans from as far back as Guadalcanal. They are a rough, unshaven, competent bunch of Americans. I am landing with them. I feel I am in good hands.

With the Marines on Okinawa beachhead

My schedule for landing was an early one. I was ashore a short time after the first wave. Correspondents were forbidden to go before the fifth wave. I was on the seventh.

I had dreaded the sight of the beach littered with mangled bodies. My first look up and down the beach was a reluctant one. And then like a man in the movies who looks and looks away and then suddenly looks back unbelieving. I realized there were no bodies anywhere – and no wounded. What a wonderful feeling!

In fact, our entire regiment came ashore with only two casualties. One was a Marine who hurt his foot getting out of an amphibious truck. And the other was, of all things, a case of heat prostration!

On Okinawa

An assault on an enemy shore is a highly organized thing. It is so intricately organized, so abundant in fine detail that it would be impossible to clarify it all in your mind. No single man in our armed forces knows everything about an invasion.

But just to simplify one point–

Suppose we were invading an enemy beach on a four-mile front. It is not as you would think, one overall invasion. Instead, it is a dozen or more little invasions, simultaneously and side by side. Each team runs its own invasion. A combat team is a regiment. Our regimental commander and his staff were on the little control ship. Thus, our control ship directed only the troops of our regiment.

As I’ve written before, war to an individual is hardly ever bigger than a hundred yards on each side of him. And that’s the way it was with us at Okinawa.

From Italy writing of war

It’s the perpetual dust choking you, the hard ground wracking your muscles, the snatched food sitting ill on your stomach, the heat and the flies and dirty feet and the constant roar of engines and the perpetual moving and the never settling down and the go, go, go, night and day, and on through the night again. Eventually it all works itself into an emotional tapestry of one dull, dead pattern – yesterday is tomorrow and Troina is Randazzo and when will we ever stop and, God, I’m so tired.

In Africa, watching the crippled bomber

Then we saw the plane – just a tiny black speck. It seemed almost on the ground, it was so low, and in the first glance we could sense that it was barely moving, barely staying in the air. Crippled and alone, two hours behind all the rest, it was dragging itself home.

I am a layman, and no longer of the fraternity that flies, but I can feel. And at that moment I felt something close to human love for that faithful, battered machine, that far dark speck struggling toward us with such pathetic slowness.

All of us stood tense, hardly remembering anyone else was there. With our nervous systems, we seemed to pull the plane toward us. I suspect a photograph would have shown us all leaning slightly to the left. Not one of us thought the plane would ever make the field, but on it came – so slowly that it was cruel to watch.

It reached the far end of the airdrome, still holding its pathetic little altitude. It skimmed over the tops of parked planes, and kept on, actually reaching out – it seemed to us – for the runway. A few hundred yards more now. Could it? Would it? Was it truly possible?

They cleared the last plane, and they were over the runway. They settled slowly. The wheels touched softly. And as the plane rolled on down die runway, the thousands of men around that vast field suddenly realized that they were weak and that they could hear their hearts pounding.

The last of the sunset died, and the sky turned into blackness, which would help the Germans if they came on schedule with their bombs. But nobody cared. Our 10 dead men were miraculously back from the grave.

On the death of his mother

That night in London, back in my room alone, it seemed to me that living is futile, and death the final indignity.

I turned off the lights and pulled the blackout curtains and went to bed. Little pictures of my mother raced across the darkness before my eyes.

Pictures of nearly a lifetime. Pictures of her at neighborhood square dances long, long ago, when she was young and I was a child. Pictures of her playing the violin. Pictures of her doctoring sick horses; of her carrying newborn lambs into the house on raw spring days.

I could see her as she stood on the front porch, crying bravely, on that morning in 1918 when I, being youthful, said a tearless goodbye and climbed into the neighbor’s waiting buggy that was to take me out of her life.

The pictures grew older. Gradually she became stooped and toil-worn, and finally white and wracked with age… but always spirited, always sharp.

On that first night, I had felt in a sort of detached bitterness that, because my mother’s life was hard, it was also empty. But how wrong I was.

For you need only have seen the great truckloads of flowers they say came from all over the continent, or the scores of Indiana youngsters who journeyed to her both in life and in death because they loved her, to know that she had given a full life, and received one, in return.

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Pyle’s closest pal writes of ‘my friend’

Hears news via radio with Army on Luzon
By Lee Miller, Scripps-Howard staff writer

This story about Ernie Pyle was written by Lee Miller, heretofore managing editor of the Scripps-Howard Newspaper Alliance, and Ernie’s closest friend. When Ernie became famous and was roving over the world, Lee handled so much of Ernie’s business that he was jokingly referred to as “vice president in charge of Pyle.”

MANILA, Philippines (April 19, delayed) – I am tired and grieved and I don’t feel like writing anything.

They asked me to send in an article about my friend Ernie Pyle but Ernie wrote his own story. He wrote it in his blood – there with the foot soldiers whose dangers it was his self-imposed lot to share.

I was shaving out of a helmet this morning in a tent at the 49th Fighter Group, many miles from Manila. A radio came on in an adjacent tent. I couldn’t hear distinctly, but suddenly I thought I heard Ernie’s name. Jerry Thorp, with whom I shared a tent along with Paul Cranston, jumped from his chair and shouted: “What did he say?”

We stood there transfixed as the announcer went on. President Truman, he was saying, had paid tribute for the nation to the great reporter.

Details unimportant

The announcer went on with the meager details. But details seemed of no moment now. Ernie was gone – my closest friend for more than 20 years, years in which we shared some tragedies as well as pleasant things.

He was dead, dead the way he had increasingly feared he might die – in the violence of combat.

Ernie hated the thought of dying. He told me that in his first months of war he felt more excitement than fear, but that in the years that followed, as one friend after another was killed, and as he himself survived many brushes with death, he came to dread what might happen to him.

Didn’t want to go back

He didn’t want to go back to the war. He said so on return from Europe last year. He said it in New York, in Washington, in Albuquerque, in Hollywood, in San Francisco and Honolulu, where I saw him off in January. He forced himself to go, as a duty.

And it was indeed a duty. For never, surely, in the history of journalism had so many people come to trust implicitly the word of one particular reporter, nor so many people to feel personal devotion to a reporter.

I had been planning to go up to Baguio this morning. But I thought my office – Ernie’s office – in Washington would be trying to reach me, and I decided I’d better get to Manila. There was a five-hour wait at the airstrip before I got a ride in a B-24 going halfway. Meantime I talked to the air force noncoms leaving for home on rotation after more than three years in this theater.

“First President Roosevelt and now Ernie,” said Sgt. Harry A. McMahon of Memphis. “It won’t be the same back home now.”

Later when I changed from bomber to jeep, Capt. Al Stoughton of Washington said a Red Cross girl down at the airdrome had burst into tears at the news. All the way down the line, and here in Manila tonight, people have been saying: “Is it true about Ernie Pyle?”

At a ceremony for presentation of decorations to some engineer troops, a detailed account of Ernie’s death was read aloud to the hushed gathering.

Legend to men

I picked up my mail. My mother had written from Indiana, “I hope Ernie gets back all right. We’ve watched his progress on Okinawa closely and were so glad he had a safe landing.”

A delayed wireless from Washington said Ernie was planning to remain in the Ryukyus several weeks. A letter from my office enclosed clippings of several of Ernie’s columns, and a picture.

Ernie had never visited the Southwest Pacific Theater. He had planned to. Weeks ago, he wrote me that he hoped to see me on Luzon. But he was a legend to these men out here who never knew him.

It is still impossible to compass the fact that Ernie, that human, earthy, gentle, wise man, is gone from this troubled world whose collective madness he abhorred but whose shortcomings were overshadowed for him by the nobility of the individual human being.

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Editorial: Ernie Pyle week

This week will be Ernie Pyle week at the Red Cross blood bank.

If you read Ernie’s columns from the war fronts – and who didn’t? – take an hour off one day this week and donate a pint of blood.

That pint of blood will make a greater contribution to the war effort than any other single thing you could do.

It may save the life of one of our fighting men.

Apparently because favorable news from the war fronts has made many people forget there is still much fighting to be done, blood donations have fallen off sharply.

Months ago, Ernie wrote from Sicily:

I beg you folks back home to give and keep on giving your blood. We’ve got plenty on hand here now, but if we ever run into mass casualties such as they have on the Russian front, we will need untold amounts of it.

We’ve now run into those mass casualties on Iwo Jima, on Okinawa. There’ll be more when we assault the main islands, of Japan. We’re still getting heavy casualties in Germany. Those casualties will continue until all the pockets and lines of resistance in that mad country are wiped out.

A pint of blood is a cheap price for you to pay for the life of a man fighting for his country. But it will do the job.

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The Pittsburgh Press (April 23, 1945)

Ernie’s friends fill blood bank

Pay him tribute he would have liked
Monday, April 23, 1945

Ernie Pyle’s friends are paying him the kind of tribute he would have liked this week.

They are giving a pint of life-saving blood to the Red Cross Blood Bank in the Wabash Building. On Saturday, even before the official Ernie Pyle Week began, they gave the Blood Bank its best Saturday in a month.

This morning at 10 o’clock, all the places were filled with donors, most of whom were giving their blood as a memorial to the well-loved little writer who now lies in an Army cemetery on a Pacific island.

Always read him

Several of the donors were workers at the Pittsburgh Pipe and Coupling Company in Allison Park.

“I always read him,” said Earl J. Hanlon of Gibsonia, who was giving his seventh donation in memory of Ernie Pyle. With him were John Holland and George Hubal of the Same company, who gave their sixth and fifth donations.

Mrs. Lorraine Cole of Wexford came in early to give her fifth pint of blood to honor Ernie. Her son, Sgt. John Cole, was in the Okinawa invasion, his fifth in two years overseas. He met Ernie just a day or two before his death, according to a letter which the Coles received last week.

“He is such a little fellow, and he has a wonderful grin,” wrote Sgt. Cole. “He is rated tops with everyone out here.”

His favorite writer

Mr. and Mrs. Cole have three other sons, Renald, Robert and Richard, all in the Navy, and a foster son, John Cawigan of Brooklyn, who is also on Okinawa. Mr. Cole, general manager of the Kelley-Koett X-Ray Corporation, will come to the bank this week to give his fourth donation.

“He was my favorite writer. If I didn’t read anything else, I read his column,” said James Kelly of Fair Oaks, who gave his second pint of blood as a tribute to Ernie Pyle this morning.

A veteran of 23 months in Iran with an Army motor transport unit, Les Williamson, 151 Straw Ave., Bellevue, gave his first donation to the Red Cross Blood Bank today in honor of the war correspondent who was the common soldier’s friend and interpreter.

Made up his mind

“I saw it in The Press yesterday and that made up my mind,” said Louis Stover, 42 Waldorf St., a worker at Dravo, who visited the Blood Bank this morning for the second time.

Other admirers of Ernie Pyle who wish to help save the life of a wounded soldier as a tribute to the writer’s memory may make an appointment by calling the Blood Bank, GRant 1680, or may come into the Wabash Building any time after 9:45 a.m.

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Ernie Pyle V Norman

Roving Reporter

By Ernie Pyle

Before he was killed on Ie Shima, Ernie Pyle, as was his habit, had written a number of columns ahead. He did this so there would be no interruptions in the column while he was getting material for more. Several more are expected.

OKINAWA (by Navy radio) – It’s marvelous to see a bunch of American troops go about making themselves at home wherever they get a chance to settle down for a few days.

My company of First Division Marines dug in at the edge of a bomb-shattered village. The village was quaint and not without charm. I was astonished at the similarity with the villages of Sicily and Italy.

The town didn’t really seem oriental. The houses were wooden one-story buildings, surrounded by little vegetable gardens. Instead of fences, each lot was divided by rows of shrubs or trees. The cobblestoned streets were just wide enough for a jeep. They were winding and walled on both sides by head-high stone walls.

A good part of the town lay shattered. Scores of the houses had burned and only ashes and red roofing tile were left. Wandering around, I counted the bodies of four Okinawans still in the streets. Otherwise the town was deserted.

The people had fled to their caves in the hillsides, taking most of their personal belongings with them. There is almost no furniture in Japanese houses, so they didn’t have to worry about that.

After a few days the grapevine carried the word to them that our commander picked out a nice little house on a rise at the edge of town for his command post.

Marines on an afternoon off

The house was very light, fairly clean, and the floors were covered with woven straw mats. A couple of officers and a dozen men moved into the house and slept on the floor and we cooked our rations over an open stone cookstove in the rear.

Then the word went around for the men of the company to dig in for several days. Two platoons were assigned to dig in along the outer sides of the nearby hills for perimeter defense.

The boys were told they could keep the horses they had commandeered, that they could carry wooden panels out of the houses to make little doghouses for themselves, but not to take anything else, and that they could have fires, except during air alerts.

They weren’t to start their daily mop-up patrols in the brush until the next day, so they had the afternoon off to clean themselves up and fix up their little houses.

Different men did different things. Some built elaborate houses about the size of chicken houses, with floor mats and chairs and even kerosene lanterns hanging from the roof.

One Mexican boy dug a hole, covered it with boards, and then camouflaged it so perfectly with brush you really couldn’t see it.

Some spent the afternoon taking baths and washing clothes in the river. Some rode bicycles around town. Some rode their horses up and down. Some foraged around town through the deserted houses. Some went looking for chickens to cook. Some sat in groups and talked. Some just slept.

Wear Jap kimonos

An order went out against wearing Jap clothing or eating any of the local vegetables, pork, goat, beef or fowl. But this was before the order came out.

The Marines had dug up lots of Japanese kimonos out of the smashed houses and put them on while washing their one set of clothes. If you ever want to see a funny sight, just take a look at a few dozen dirty and unshaven Marines walking around in pink and blue women’s kimonos.

A typical example was Pvt. Raymond Adams of Pleasant, Tennessee. He had fixed himself a dugout right on the edge of a bluff above the river. He had a grand view and a nice little grassy front yard. Out there he had driven stakes and built a fire. He hung his helmet over the fire like a kettle and was stewing chicken. He had taken off his clothes and put on a beautiful pink and white kimono.

Later a friend came along with a Jap bicycle with one pedal off, and Adams tried without much success to ride it up and down a nearby lane.

If there ever is a war play about Marines, I hope they include one tough-looking private in a pink-and-white kimono, stewing chicken and trying to ride a one-pedaled bicycle through a shattered Japanese village.

Pvt. Adams is married and has a boy eight months old he has never seen. If the baby could have seen his father that day he would probably have got the colic from laughing so much.

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The Pittsburgh Press (April 24, 1945)

Ernie Pyle V Norman

Roving Reporter

By Ernie Pyle

Before he was killed on Ie Shima, Ernie Pyle, as was his habit, had written a number of columns ahead. He did this so there would be no interruptions in the column while he was getting material for more. several more are expected.

OKINAWA (by Navy radio) – One morning after breakfast, about a dozen of us were sitting on the mat covered floor of a little Okinawan house talking things over while sipping our coffee.

Our First Division Marine company had just moved in the night before and several days’ accumulation of grime covered everybody. Suddenly Lt. Bones Carstens stood up and said: “I cleaned my fingernails this morning and it sure does feel good.”

And then my friend Bird Dog Clayton held his own begrimed hands out in front of him, looked at them a long time and said: “If I was to go to dinner in Dallas and lay them things up on a white tablecloth I wonder what would happen?”

A good many of the Okinawan civilians, while Wandering along the roadside, bow low to every American they meet. Whether this is from fear or native courtesy I do not know, but anyhow they do it. And the Americans being Americans usually bow right back.

One of the Marines I know got mixed up in one of these little bowing incidents the other day. He is Pfc. Roy Sellers, a machine gunner from Amelia, Ohio.

Bowing ‘contest’

Roy is married and has a little girl two years old. He used to be a machinist at the Cincinnati Milling Machine Company. He played semi-pro ball too.

When Roy has a beard, he looks just like a tramp in a stage play. He is only 27, but looks much older. In fact, he goes by the nickname of “Old Man.”

Well one day Old Man was trying to ride a Jap bicycle along the bank of a little river where he camped. The ground was rough and the bicycle had only one pedal and Roy was having a struggle to keep his bike upright. Just then an old Okinawan, bareheaded and dressed in a black kimono and carrying a dirty sack, walked through our little camp. He wasn’t supposed to be at large but it was none of our business and we didn’t molest him.

He was bowing to everybody, night and left, as he passed. Then he met Machine Gunner Sellers on his one-pedaled bicycle. Roy was already having his troubles.

As he came abreast of the Okinawan, Roy bowed deeply over the handle bars, hit a rut, lost his balance and over he went. The Okinawan, with Oriental inscrutability, returned the bow and never looked back.

We all laughed our heads off. “Who’s bowing to whom around here?” we asked. Roy denied he had bowed first. But we knew better. After that he decided to give his old bicycle away to somebody less polite than himself.

Reminded of Italy

As our company was moving forward one day and I looked down the line of closely packed Marines I thought for a moment I was back in Italy.

There for sure was Bill Mauldin’s cartoon character of G.I. Joe – the solemn, bearded, dirty, drooping weary old man of the infantry.

This character was Pfc. Urban Vachon of French-Canadian extraction, who comes from Laconia, New Hampshire. He has a brother, William, fighting in Germany.

Urban is such a perfect ringer for Mauldin’s soldier that I asked the regimental photographer to take a picture of him and it has been sent back to the States. Maybe you’ve seen it. If you have, you can prove to any dissenters that soldiers do look like Mauldin makes them look.

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Pyle memorial program on air

KDKA to carry national tribute

NEW YORK (SHS) – A program dedicated to the memory of Ernie Pyle will be broadcast by NBC tonight at 11:30 EWT.

KDKA will transcribe the program and rebroadcast it at 12:15 a.m. tonight and again at 11 a.m. tomorrow.

The program will include a dramatization of Mr. Pyle’s book, Brave Men, and a number of American ballads and marching songs.

A cast of nine players under Gerald Holland, producer, will be heard on stations as far west as the Rocky Mountains and north into Canada. The same program was originally broadcast last February 17 in a series of presentations for the Treasury Department and the sale of War Bonds.

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Mrs. Pyle to get $100 a week for life

ALBUQUERQUE, New Mexico (UP) – Ernie Pyle’s widow will receive $100 per week for the rest of her life under terms of the war correspondent’s will which was filed for probate here yesterday.

Ernie, who was killed while covering the invasion of Ie Shima, named Roy F. Johnson of Stillwater, Minnesota, trustee of his estate.

In addition to Mrs. Pyle, who will receive the family home ion Albuquerque and a trust fund paying $100 per week, Ernie left $2,500 to Eugene Uebelhardt of Los Angeles. Upon agreement of Mrs. Pyle and Trustee Johnson, the will provides $5,000 each to be paid to Ernie’s father and his aunt, Mrs. Mary E. Bales, both of Dana, Indiana; Mrs. Pyle’s mother, Mrs. Myrta Siebolds of Afton, Minnesota, and Ernie’s secretary Rosamond Goodman of Washington, D.C.

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Ernie Pyle story featured twice on KDKA

Ernie’s book to be dramatized
By Si Steinhauser

So that everyone may hear NBC’s dramatization of Ernie Pyle’s last book, Brave Men, KDKA will carry the broadcast at 12:15 tonight and repeat it via recording at 11 o’clock Wednesday morning.

Dick McDonagh, head of the network script department, has adapted Ernie’s story for a Words at War broadcast, featuring the column Ernie wrote about the death of Capt. Waskow on an Italian mountainside and how his men brought their dead leader’s body from the precipice and bade him goodbye. It was one of Ernie’s greatest stories.

Tonight’s – and tomorrow’s – story is in fact a repeat. It was first heard on NBC’s These Are Our Men in February. The network felt and Manager Joe Baudino of KDKA agrees, that Ernie and his writings meant so much to America that everyone will want to hear the story again. And those who missed it will appreciate the broadcast all the more.

Veterans of Pacific duty emphasize need for plasma

Army engineer says Ernie Pyle Week ‘is a great tribute to a great man’
Tuesday, April 24, 1945

Capt. and Mrs. Robert Newsome know the value of blood plasma.

As an Army nurse for 21 months in New Guinea, Mrs. Isabel Newsome saw plasma used in the treatment of diseases and burns, as well as shock.

And her husband, an engineer who has just returned from 38 months’ service in the Pacific, says: “I saw it save the lives of three of my men when our ship was attacked by a Jap suicide pilot during the invasion of Luzon.”

Could have used more

“We had enough, but we could have used more I can’t urge too strongly the need for civilians to give their blood to the Red Cross,” he continued.

Capt. Newsome, who went to the Blood Bank yesterday while visiting his wife’s family at 343 Vistaview St., Kennywood, thinks Ernie Pyle Week at the Wash Building Blood Bank is a great tribute to “a great man.”

And if people think plasma isn’t needed because the war is over, I can tell them that most of us out in the Pacific think we’ve just started to fight the Japs.

Anyway, the mopping-up operations are the worst. That’s when Ernie Pyle got killed.

Veteran of 4 campaigns

The South Dakota captain fought in the East Indies, Papua, New Guinea and Philippines campaigns and met his future bride in the summer of 1942, shortly after she had landed on New Guinea with the 171st Station Hospital.

They had their first date at a “New Year’s Eve” party January 2, 1943, and he proposed during a bombing raid.

Both win citations

I’d just spent 10 minutes telling her why she should say no when the planes came over. The ack-ack was pretty heavy and I thought we’d better crawl under the car.

But Isabel didn’t want to – she had on a white blouse, and was afraid she’d get it dirty!

They were married September 8, 1943 and have a son, Robert Jr., seven months old. Both were awarded the Presidential Citation for their work in New Guinea.

Mrs. Newsome, who took her training at Homestead Hospital, also made a plea for more Army nurses.

We had 30 nurses for 700 men, and perhaps two or three would themselves be ill with malaria. We needed more help then, and the girls who have been overseas several years should be relieved.

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Words At War: ‘Brave Men’ (NBC), April 24, 11:30 p.m. EWT:

The Pittsburgh Press (April 25, 1945)

Ernie Pyle V Norman

Roving Reporter

By Ernie Pyle

Before he was killed on Ie Shima, Ernie Pyle, as was his habit, had written a number of columns ahead. He did this so there would be no interruptions in the column while he was getting material for more. Several more are expected.

OKINAWA (by Navy radio) – One of these days Mrs. Leland Taylor of Jackson, Michigan, is going to be the envy of all her friends. For she is about to come into possession of four pairs of the most beautiful Japanese pajamas you ever saw.

These are daytime pajamas or drawing room pajamas – the kind that some American hostesses wear at cozy cocktail parties.

Mrs. Taylor’s husband, who is a Marine corporal and known as “Pop,” found these pajamas in a wicker basket hidden in a cave. They are thrilling to look at and soft to the touch.

Pop carries the basket around on his arm from place to place until he can get a chance to ship them home.

One morning I wandered down to our mortar platoon and ran onto a young fellow with whom I have a great deal in common. We are both from Albuquerque and we both have mosquito trouble.

This New Mexico lad was Pfc. Dick Trauth. Both his eyes were swollen almost shut from mosquito bites. At least one of mine is swollen shut every morning. We both look very funny.

Dick still is Just a boy. He’s seen 19 months in the Marines and a year overseas. He’s a veteran of combat and still he’s only 17 years old. He has one brother in the Marines and another in the Army in Germany.

Bing Crosby of the Marines

Dick writes letters to movie stars and not long ago he got back a picture of Shirley Temple, autographed to his company just as ne had asked her to do. Dick is very shy and quiet and I had a feeling he musty be terribly lonesome but the other boys say he isn’t and that he gets along fine.

One of the Marines who drives me around in a jeep whenever I have to go anywhere is Pfc. Buzz Vitere of the Bronx.

Buzz has other accomplishments besides jeep driving. He is known as the Bing Crosby of the Marines. If you shut your eyes and don’t listen very hard you can hardly tell the difference.

I first met Buzz on the transport coming up to Okinawa. He and a friend would give an impromptu and homegrown concert on deck every afternoon.

They would sit on a hatch in the warm tropical sun and pretty soon there would be scores of Marines and sailors packed around them, listening in appreciative silence. It made the trip to war almost like a Caribbean luxury cruise.

Buzz’s partner was Pfc. Johnny Marturello of Des Moines, Iowa. Johnny plays the accordion. He is an Italian, of course, and has all an Italian’s flair for the accordion. He sings too, but he says as a singer his name is “Frank Not-So-Hotra.”

Johnny plays one piece he composed himself. It is a lovely thing. He sent it to the G.I. Publishing Company, or branch or whatever it is in the States and I feel positive if it could be widely played it would become a hit.

Tropics hard on accordion

The piece is a sentimental song called “Why Do I Have to Be Here Alone?” Johnny wrote it for his girl back home, but he grins and admits they are “on the outs.”

Johnny came ashore on Love Day and his accordion followed two days after. Now in his off moments, he sits at the side of the road and plays for bunches of Okinawans that the Marines have rounded up. They seem to like it.

Johnny had a lot of trouble with his accordion down south in the tropical climates. Parts would warp and stick and mold and he continuously had to take the thing apart and dry and clean it.

But it was worth the trouble. It has kept Johnny from getting too homesick. He brought it along with him from America just for his own morale. He knew the accordion would probably be ruined by the climate, but he didn’t care.

“I can always get a new accordion,” Johnny said, “but I can’t get a new me.”

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Ernie’s friend wants Ernie, not bequest

LOS ANGELES, California (UP) – Eugene Uebelhardt, 45-year-old Filipino welder, said today that he would give up “every penny” of the $2,500 Ernie Pyle willed him if that would bring back the late war correspondent.

“What is money when it comes through the death of a man like that?” Mr. Uebelhardt asked when informed of the bequest from Ernie, killed last week by a Jap machine-gunner on Ie Shima.

“I’d gladly give up every penny of the money to have my friend back,” he said.

Uebelhardt, whose friendship with Pyle started on a boat just out of Manila in 1922, is working at Consolidated Steel shipyards under the name of Webelhardt.

Pyle, on a tour with the University of Indiana baseball team when he met Uebelhardt, took a special interest in the youth, helped him to enter the United States, took him to his Indiana home, and helped him through school.

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Maj. Williams: Ernie could say it

By Maj. Al Williams

The passing of Ernie Pyle recalls many memories of years ago.

When I first met Ernie, he was the aviation editor of The Washington News. Aviation news of those days largely was confined to the progress of feuding between the Army and Navy, with a dash of commercial aviation – such as it was.

Every service airman stationed in Washington knew Ernie. The unassuming little guy with the pleasant smile got around and everybody called him Ernie. He wrote his flying news so that lay folks could understand it. Some of us came to know Ernie mighty well. We were in the thick of a losing fight to awaken the country to what we thought we saw coming in the form of airpower. And to do this we had to attack deeply-entrenched traditional prejudices.

It was Ernie who often dropped a wise word of caution which saved a few lads I know from officially breaking their precious necks. It was Ernie who sat next to me and covered my congressional fight – and I still preserve a copy of what Ernie had to say about that battle for high-speed research so that we would know how to build high-speed fighters when we needed them.

Caught the significance

Ernie quickly caught the technical significance of an aviation story, but, as so highly developed in his later writings, he probed with the delicate touch of a sensitive instinct until he found the deep, underlying stream of warm human-interest factors. And then – Pyle fashion – he told his story as only he could tell it. Furthermore, Ernie never became greater than the men he wrote about, and in this critical angle differed from the usual run of air writers.

There’s been a deepening public nostalgia in this land for reality, for the warm homey fundamentals of old-fashioned Americanism. And nowhere was this nostalgia more evident than in the popular turning of everyday, ordinary people to Ernie’s daily column.

I remember the first time I took Ernie as a passenger in a Navy two-seater fighter, his cool smile as I lashed him up in his parachute and his remark as I passed along a few directions as to what to do with that chute ring – when, as, and if–

Admitted he was scared

This little, frail guy had a great soul deep down inside, and a heart to take whatever came his way. Ernie just sat there, keenly alert, seeing everything, registering everything. Scared – as he told me later. Sure, he came right out with the confession.

With these memories of the Ernie Pyle of other days I have never been surprised at his understanding of our boys’ real thoughts and his ability to tell the story so everyone could understand it.

We are all designed according to the same general plan – the same number of bones, the same aches and the same wants. The big, distinguishing difference is in the intensity of that little light way down deep inside which we call a soul. In some it burns dimly. In others it flares once in a while. In still others it burns very brightly at times. But in some, it is incandescent, burning its owner as well as those nearby with an unquenchable determination to live fully and completely. Such a light illuminated the life of Ernie Pyle, best exemplified to me by his words years ago as I buckled on his parachute:

“Maybe I can’t take it, Al, but fly this flight as if I weren’t with you.”

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The Pittsburgh Press (April 26, 1945)

Ernie Pyle V Norman

Roving Reporter

By Ernie Pyle

Before he was killed on Ie Shima, Ernie Pyle, as was his habit, had written a number of columns ahead. He did this so there would be no interruptions in the column while he was getting material for more. Several more are expected.

OKINAWA (by Navy radio) – Back nearly two years ago when I was with Oklahoma’s 45th Division in Sicily and later in Italy, I learned they had a number of Navajo Indians in communications.

When secret orders had to be given over the phone these boys gave them to one another in Navajo. Practically nobody in the world understands Navajo except another Navajo.

Well, my regiment of First Division Marines has the same thing. There are about eight Indians who do this special work. They are good Marines and very proud of being so.

There are two brothers among them, both named Joe. Their last names are the ones that are different. I guess that’s a Navajo custom, though I never knew of it before.

One brother, Pfc. Joe Gatewood, went to the Indian school in Albuquerque. In fact, our house is on the very same street and Joe said it sure was good to see somebody from home.

Joe has been out here three years. He is 34 and has five children back home when he would like to see. He was wounded several months ago and got the Purple Heart.

Joe’s brother is Joe Kellwood who has also been out here three years. A couple of others are Pfc. Alex Williams of Winslow, Arizona, and Pvt. Oscar Carroll of Fort Defiance, Arizona, which is the capital of the Navajo reservation. Most of the boys are from around Fort Defiance and used to work for the Indian Bureau.

Knew invasion wouldn’t be tough

The Indian boys knew before we got to Okinawa that the invasion landing wasn’t going to be very tough. They were the only ones in the convoy who did know it. For one thing they saw signs and for another they used their own influence.

Before the convoy left, the far south tropical island where the Navajos had been training since the last campaign, the boys on a ceremonial dance.

The Red Cross furnished some colored cloth and paint to stain their faces. They made up the rest of their Indian costumes from chicken feathers, seashells, empty ration cans and rifle cartridges.

Then they did their own native ceremonial chants and dances out there under the tropical palm trees with several thousand Marines as a grave audience.

In their chant they asked the great gods in the sky to sap the Japanese of their strength for this blitz. They put the finger of weakness on the Japs. And then they ended their ceremonial chant by singing the Marine Corps song in Navajo.

I asked Joe Gatewood if they really felt their dance had something to do with the ease of our landing and he said the boys did believe so and were very serious about it, himself included.

“I knew nothing was going to happen to us,” Joe said, “for on the way up here there was a rainbow over the convoy and I knew then everything would be all right.”

They can’t hurt us

One day I was walking through the edge of a rubbled Okinawa village where Marine telephone linesmen were stringing wire to the tops of the native telephone poles.

As I passed, one of the two linesmen at the top called down rather nervously saying he was afraid the wobbly pole was going to break under their weight.

To which one of the men on the ground, apparently their sergeant, called back reassuringly:

“You’ve got nothing to worry about. That’s imperial Japanese stuff. It can’t break.”

There are very few cattle on Okinawa, but there are lots of goats and horses. The horses are small hike western ponies and mostly bay or sorrel. Most of them are skinny, but when you see well-fed ones, they are good-looking horses. They are all well broken and tame.

The Marines have acquired them by the hundreds. Our company alone has more than 20. The boys put their heavier packs on them but more than that they just seem to enjoy riding them up and down the country roads.

They have rigged up rope halters for them and one Marine made a bridle using a piece of bamboo for a bit. They dug up old pads, and even some goatskins to use as saddle blankets. But it’s surprising how many men in a company of Marines don’t really know how to ride a horse.

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The Pittsburgh Press (April 27, 1945)

Big ship named for Ernie Pyle

WASHINGTON (UP) – The Maritime Commission announced today that it will name one of its largest ships for Ernie Pyle, the famous Scripps-Howard war reporter who was killed on Ie Island April 18.

The Maritime Commission said:

Pyle many times honored the men of the Merchant Marine for the vital, and often heroic, part they have taken in the war effort. Millions of Pyle’s G.I.s have crossed the oceans to the fighting fronts on ships manned by his friends in the Merchant Marine.

The Ernie Pyle will be a C-4 military type cargo ship – 522 feet long, 14,600 deadweight tons, 9,000 horsepower, and 14,000-mile cruising radius.

Medal of Honor urged for Pyle

LONDON, England (UP) – Pvt. Karl Detzer Jr. and “50 other Joes” proposed in a letter to the Army newspaper, Stars and Stripes, today that the Congressional Medal of Honor be awarded posthumously to Ernie Pyle, war correspondent recently killed on Ie Island.

Ernie Pyle V Norman

Roving Reporter

By Ernie Pyle

Before he was killed on Ie Shima, Ernie Pyle, as was his habit, had written a number of columns ahead. He did this so there would be no interruptions in the column while he was getting material for more. His last column will appear tomorrow.

OKINAWA (by Navy radio) – There is one very small Marine who is as nice as he can be, always smiling and making some crack. But the boys say that in battle he doesn’t give a damn for anything.

The first afternoon I joined his company he didn’t know who I was and as we passed, he said very respectfully, “Good evening, Colonel.” I had to chuckle to myself. Later he mentioned it and we laughed about it and then he started calling me Ernie.

He was Cpl. Charles Bradshaw of Indianapolis. He is only 19, but on his third campaign in the Pacific. He’s had three pieces of shrapnel in him at various times and months later they would work out through the skin. Another one is just about to come out his finger now.

in the Marines, Cpl. Bradshaw is called “Brady” for short. Before joining the Marines, he worked on a section gang for the Pennsylvania Railroad. He usually wears one of those wide-brimmed green cloth hats instead of the regulation Marine cap.

He always carries a .45 and it has a slightly curved 25-cent piece imbedded in the handle. As he says, “To make it worth something.”

Brady found two huge photograph albums in a cave. The albums are full of snapshots of Japanese girls and Chinese girls and young Japs in uniform and of family poses. He treasured it as though it were full of people he knew. He studied it for hours and hopes to take it home with him. “Anything for a Souvenir” could be the motto of the Marines.

Prefers Okinawa to Panama

Another Indianapolis Marine I met on Okinawa was Pfc. Dallas Rhude who used to be a newspaperman himself.

In fact, he worked on our paper there, The Indianapolis Times. He started carrying The Times when he was eight, then got into the editorial room as a copy boy and kept that job till he joined the Marines.

He is a replacement; in other words, he is in the pool that fills up the gaps made by casualties. But since there have been very few casualties, he hasn’t replaced anybody yet.

Dallas spent 22 months in Panama, was home for a little while and now has been over here for four months. He says this Okinawa climate sure beats Panama.

Sentimental as anyone

Marines may be killers, but they’re also just as sentimental as anybody else.

There is one pleasant boy in our company that I had talked with but didn’t have any little incident to write about him, so didn’t put his name down. The morning I left the company and was saying goodbye all around, I could sense that he wanted to tell me something, so I hung around until he came out. It was about his daughter.

This Marine was Cpl. Robert Kingan of Cuyahoga Falls, Ohio. He has been a Marine 13 months and over here 11 months. His daughter was born about six weeks ago. Naturally he has never seen her, but he’s had a letter from her!

It was a V letter written in a childish scrawl and said:

Hello, Daddy, I am Karen Louise. I was born Feb. 25 at four minutes after nine. I weigh five pounds and eight ounces. Your daughter, Karen.

And then there was a P.S. on the bottom which said: “Postmaster – Please rush, My Daddy doesn’t know I am here.”

Bob didn’t know whether it was actually his wife or his mother-in-law who wrote the letter. He thinks maybe it was his mother-in-law – Mrs. A. H. Morgan – since it had her return address on it.

So, I put that down and then asked Bob what his mother-in-law’s first name was. He looked off into space for a moment, and then started laughing.

“I don’t know what her first name is,” he said. “I always just called her Mrs. Morgan!"

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The Pittsburgh Press (April 28, 1945)

Editorial: ‘So long’

He squatted at his typewriter, struggling again to array a troop of sturdy words that would serve his mood.

There were many words in his mind; but the ones he wanted had to come from his heart. And his heart was brooding, for another of his friends was dead. As man to man, he wanted to call out, “So long,” in an hour when so many were dying, so many that anything less than death was beginning to seem incredible.

The words came from his typewriter, slowly, but firmly and sincerely. They spoke of the terror of death and the way it can grip a man; and at the end they said: “I know that he, like myself, had come to feel that terror.”

Ernie Pyle snapped shut the lid on his typewriter. His story was done. It proved to be his last. Ernie had said: “So long.”

And so, with great sorrow, we print Ernie Pyle’s final column today.

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Ernie Pyle V Norman

Roving Reporter

By Ernie Pyle

This is Ernie Pyle’s last column. It is a beautiful tribute to Fred Painton, war correspondent who died of natural causes on Guam a few weeks ago. Ernie was on Okinawa when he was informed of Mr. Painton’s death. Ernie took time out from covering the war to write this touching story about his friend. Only a few days later, Ernie was killed.

OKINAWA (by Navy radio) – This is a column about Fred Painton, the war correspondent who dropped dead on Guam a short time ago.

Fred wrote war articles for Reader’s Digest and many other magazines. He even gambled his future once writing a piece for the Saturday Evening Post about me.

Fred was one of the little group of real old-timers in the European war. He was past 49 and an overseas veteran of the last war. His son is grown and in the Army. Fred had seen a great deal of war for a man his age.

He was just about to start back to America when he died. He had grown pretty weary of war. He was anxious to get home to have some time with his family.

But I’m sure he had no inkling of death, for he told me in Guam of his post-war plans to take his family and start on an ideal and easy life of six months in Europe, six in America. He had reached the point where life was nice.

Fred Painton was one of the modest people; I mean real down-deep modest. He had no side whatever, no ax to grind, no coy ambition.

He loved to talk and his words bore the authority of sound common sense. He had no intellectualisms. His philosophy was the practical kind. He was too old and experienced and too wise in the ways of human nature to belittle his fellow man for the failures that go with trying hard.

Prided self on production

Fred didn’t pretend to literary genius but he did pride himself on a facility for production. He could get a thousand dollars apiece for his articles and he wrote a score of them a year. And his pieces, like himself, were always honest. I’ve known him to decline to do an assignment when he felt the subject prohibited his doing it with complete honesty.

Fred’s balding head and crooked nose, his loud and friendly nasal voice, his British Army trousers and short leggings were familiar in every campaign in Europe.

He took rough life as it came and complained about nothing, except for an occasional bout with the censors. And even there he made no enemies for he was always sincere.

There were a lot of people Fred didn’t like, and being no introvert everybody within earshot knew whom he didn’t like and why. And I have never known him to dislike anyone who wasn’t a phony.

Fred and I have traveled through lots of war together. We did those bitter cold days, early in Tunisia, and we were the last stragglers out of Sicily.

We both came home for short furloughs after Sicily. The Army provided me with a powerful No. 2 air priority, while Fred had only the routine No. 3.

We left the airport at Algiers within four hours of each other on the same morning. I promised Fred I would call his wife and tell her he would be home within a week.

When I got to New York I called the Painton home at Westport, Connecticut. Fred answered the phone himself. He had beat me home by three days on his measly little priority! He never got over kidding me about that.

Natural death seems incongruous

As the war years rolled by, we have become so indoctrinated into sudden and artificially imposed death that natural death in a combat zone seems incongruous, and almost as though the one who died had been cheated.

Fred had been through the mill. His ship was torpedoed out from under him in the Mediterranean. Anti-aircraft fire killed a man beside him in a plane over Morocco.

He had gone on many invasions. He was in Cassino. He was ashore at Iwo Jima. He was certainly living on borrowed time. To many it seems unfair for him to die prosaically. And yet…

The wear and the weariness of war is cumulative. To many a man in the line today fear is not so much of death itself, but fear of the terror and anguish and utter horror that precedes death in battle.

I have no idea how Fred Painton would have liked to die. But somehow, I’m glad he didn’t have to go through the unnatural terror of dying on the battlefield. For he was one of my dear friends and I know that he, like myself, had come to feel that terror.

This is Ernie Pyle’s last column. The Press has printed all the stories written before he was killed by Jap machine-gun bullets on Ie Island, off Okinawa.

For the second time in little more than a year, we publish with sadness and deep regret the final column of a great reporter and a splendid human being. In February 1944, we printed the last column of Raymond Clapper who, like Ernie, met death covering the Pacific warfare.

It has been suggested that The Press publish some of Ernie’s former columns. But we have done this in the past when he was on vacations, and another publication of those columns would, we believe, probably be something of a letdown after the stories which led to his death.

Hence, this is goodbye to Ernie. As he, himself, wrote in the concluding sentence of his book Here Is Your War:

“When we leave here for the next shore, there is nothing we can do for the ones beneath the wooden crosses, except perhaps to pause and murmur: ‘Thanks, pal.’”

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