In this remarkable oral history collection, thirty-three participants in the turbulent epic that began with the day of infamy at Pearl Harbor and ended with the signing of the surrender documents in Tokyo Harbor tell their stories. Their remembrances of heartbreak, frustration, heroism, hope, and triumph were collected over a period of twenty-five years by John T. Mason. Their recollections reveal perspectives and facts not included in traditional works of history. Each selection, introduced with a preface that places it in the context of the Pacific War, takes the reader behind the scenes to present the personal, untold stories of naval history.
Included are Admiral William S. Sullivan's account of the problems involved in clearing Manila Harbor of some five hundred wrecked vessels left by the departing Japanese and Admiral Thomas C. Kinkaid's description of the communications breakdown at the Battle of Leyte Gulf. There are also the very personal recollections of humor and horror told by the unknown actors in the war: the hospital corpsman, the coxswain, and the machinist's mate. Originally published in 1986, this volume is an unusual and lasting tribute to the ingenuity and teamwork demonstrated by America's forces in the Pacific as well as a celebration of the human spirit