Interview with William Tucker, May 13, 2002

Louie B. Nunn Center for Oral History, University of Kentucky Libraries

 

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00:00:01 - Entrance into the service

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Partial Transcript: This is May 13th, 2002.

Segment Synopsis: Talks about being drafted and having to wait a long time so he went and volunteered. Talks about his brothers and what branches of service they were in.

Keywords: Army; Crestwood, Kentucky; Jefferson County; World War II; draft; enlisted

Subjects: Crestwood (Oldham County, Ky.); Draft.; Enlisted man.; Jefferson County (Ky.); United States. Army.; World War, 1939-1945.

00:04:08 - Basic training

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Partial Transcript: Ok, so as soon as you changed your status to that of a volunteer.

Segment Synopsis: Talks about doing his basic training, getting injured, doing jungle training, and finding out he will be going to the South Pacific instead of Europe.

Keywords: 5th Replacement Depot; Bataan Death March; Camp Croft; Fort Meade, Maryland; Fort Ord, California; Fort Riley.; South Pacific; amphibious ducks; basic training; guerillas; jungle training; march fracture

Subjects: Basic training.; Bataan Death March, Philippines, 1942.; Camp Croft (S.C. : Military camp); Fort George G. Meade (Md.); Fort Ord (Calif.); Guerrillas.; Motor vehicles, Amphibious.; Stress fractures (Orthopedics)

00:14:48 - Overseas deployment

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Partial Transcript: So you went through what they cal the jungle training.

Segment Synopsis: Talks about life aboard the USS Monterey while being deployed overseas.

Keywords: Aussies; Australian airmen; New Guinea; Oro Bay, New Guinea; Red Cross; Sidney, Australia; USS Monterey; WACS

Subjects: American Red Cross.; Australians.; Monterey (Aircraft carrier); New Guinea.; Oro Province (Papua New Guinea); Sydney, Australia.; United States. Army. Women's Army Corps.

00:20:10 - New Guinea

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Partial Transcript: What was it like when you got to New Guinea?

Segment Synopsis: Talks about what New Guinea was like when they got there. Talks about getting sick with Malaria.

Keywords: Japanese; Oro Bay; anopheles mosquito; atabrine pills; cannibalism; foxholes; head hunters; malaria; shrunken heads

Subjects: Atabrine.; Cannibalism.; Headhunters.; Intrenchments.; Japanese.; Malaria.; Oro Province (Papua New Guinea); Shrunken heads.

00:26:09 - Bougainville

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Partial Transcript: Did you stay pretty healthy other than the Malaria?

Segment Synopsis: Talks about what kind of food they had to eat and his pet monkey. Talks about being assigned to the 37th Infantry Division. Talks about what it was like in Bougainville.

Keywords: 37th Infantry Division (United States); Bougainville; Japanese; New Guinea; c-rations; k-rations

Subjects: Bougainville Island (Papua New Guinea); Japanese.; New Guinea.; Operational rations (Military supplies)

00:35:59 - Life in the field in the Philippines

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Partial Transcript: Was that the next place you went then, was the Philippines?

Segment Synopsis: Talks about what it was like living in the Philippines. Talks about his first experience in combat.

Keywords: 45 revolver; Christmas Island; Imperial Marines; Japanese Army; Japanese Navy; Lingayen Gulf; Luzon; bayonet; demolitions; machete

Subjects: Bayonets.; Christmas Island (Indian Ocean); Lingayen Gulf (Philippines); Luzon (Philippines); Machete.; Wrecking.

00:48:32 - Experiencing enemy fire

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Partial Transcript: Did you lose many people in your outfit

Segment Synopsis: Talks about being under fire by the Japanese Army at Manila.

Keywords: Corps of Engineers; MacArthur; Manila; Pasig River; Philippine Commonwealth (money); Philippine Government (money)

Subjects: MacArthur, Douglas, 1880-1964.; Manila Bay (Philippines); Pasig River (Luzon, Philippines); United States. Army. Corps of Engineers.

00:54:47 - Being Wounded

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Partial Transcript: Did you ever get wounded?

Segment Synopsis: Talks about getting wounded outside of Manila.

Keywords: Bronze star; Manila; Wall City; artillery; bonzai attack; concussion; foxhole; shrapnel

Subjects: Artillery.; Bronze Star Medal (U.S.); Intramuros (Manila, Philippines); Intrenchments.; Manila (Philippines)

01:02:30 - Combat decisions / Taking prisoners

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Partial Transcript: And we're doing this at the Oldham County History Center

Segment Synopsis: Talks about some of the horrific things he saw while at the Philippines.

Keywords: Bonzai attack; Cabanatuan; Japanese; Japanese Army; Manila; prison camp

Subjects: Cabanatuan (Philippines : Concentration camp); Japan. Rikugun.; Manila (Philippines)

01:12:48 - War's end

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Partial Transcript: Were you in the Philippines until the end of the war?

Segment Synopsis: Talks about where he was at the end of the war and talks about his brothers.

Keywords: 45 pistol; Douglas McArthur; court marshalled; point system; road graders

Subjects: Court marshals.; Graders (Earthmoving machinery); MacArthur, Douglas, 1880-1964.

01:18:54 - Food during the war

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Partial Transcript: I know we could sit here all day and talk about these things.

Segment Synopsis: Talks about the food he had to eat during the war.

Keywords: SPAM; dehydrated potatoes; instant coffee; powdered eggs; powdered milk

Subjects: Dried eggs.; Dried milk.; Instant coffee.