Command Post What is this?
Posted on May 17, 2018
CWO4 Hershel Williams
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Responses: 29
Capt Brandon Charters
Edited 6 mo ago
CWO4 Hershel Williams Thank you for spending your time with us. It's incredible to have you here. Knowing how close you were to the flag being raised on Iwo Jima’s Mt. Suribachi, what were the reactions from you and your Marines when you learned of this news? Also, when did you have time to finally reflect on the significance of your unit's courage & accomplishments in Iwo Jima?
CWO4 Hershel Williams
CWO4 Hershel Williams
6 mo
When the large flag was flying, Marines around me began cheering and firing their weapons into the air. When I saw that and saw the flag, I began doing the same thing!

It was not until after I was discharged from the USMC and began reading and hearing through the news media what we accomplished. At the time it was just another combat operation.
SGT David A. 'Cowboy' Groth
No questions sir, just a sharp salute, and a big thank you for your service to our great nation.
CWO4 Hershel Williams
CWO4 Hershel Williams
6 mo
Semper Fi
Cpl Jeff N.
Woody, what a great opportunity to say thank you to you personally. When I enlisted in the Marine Corps in 1981, we were ingrained with the history, customs and courtesies and stories of men such as you and those you served with on Iwo Jima. . You were the standard that we would be measured against. In reading the citation again, as I have read it before, it would be hard to measure up to the standard you set but we knew what it was and the bar was very, very high.

When I took my oldest son to Washington DC when he was 15, we met an Iwo Jima veteran at the Marine Corp War Memorial. He spoke with my son for about 10 minutes or so about the lead up to the battle, the battle and his experience. My son was mesmerized. My son ended up enlisting in the Marine Corps about 3 years later and served for 7 years with a tour in Afghanistan.

Two questions:

I've read a number of books on Iwo Jima are there any that you consider the best at telling the story of the Marines on the island?

In looking at the fanatical nature of the enemy you faced in WW II, do you see any parallels for the enemy we face today in radicalized Islamic forces we face such as ISIS?

Semper Fidelis Woody.
CWO4 Hershel Williams
CWO4 Hershel Williams
6 mo
1. In my mind, Flags of our Fathers comes as near to being accurate as any other writing.

2. I see a great comparison although I think the Japanese were more committed to die for the emperor than ISIS is fro Allah.