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Never tell people how to do things. Tell them what to do and they will surprise you with their ingenuity.

-- General George Patton Jr

Flags of Our Fathers

"Flags of Our Fathers" is a combined biography of six men who raised the Stars and Strips on top Mount Suribachi during the Battle of Iwo Jima. Five Marines and one Navy Corpsman. Today, the names of John Bradley (USN), Rene Gagnon (USMC), Harlon Block (USMC), Franklin Sousley (USMC), Mike Strank (USMC), Ira Hayes (USMC) were the "flagraisers" from right to left. Three were killed later during the battle. Three, by Presidential order, were pulled from the battle. "The Flags of Our Fathers" tells the reader about the different backgrounds of the six men from birth to their decision to enter the military. For Strank, Hayes, and Harlon Block were combat veterans, for the other three, Iwo Jima would be their first taste of combat. The book covers the training the the newly formed 5th Marine Division. The story covers the "flagraisers" combat experiences on Iwo Jima. "Flag of Our Fathers" covers the raising of the "first" flag, and why the small "first" flag was replaced by the "second" flag, which the famous "Raising the flag on Mt. Suribachi. James Bradley, son to John Bradley, recounts the story of Frank Rosenthal shooting the second raising; the myths about the event, and the misunderstandings of the flag raising event. The book continues with the 7th bond tour, in which the "flagraiser" were a part of. Mr. Bradley chronicals the lives of the remaining three until their deaths. John Bradley was the last to pass away in 1994. It was not tell the Bradley family was going through John's effects that James discovered the Navy Cross his father earned on Iwo, artifacts from the bond tour, and other memorablia from WWII. At that point James Bradley decided to discover why his father never talked his experience in the war or the flagraising event, and why his father never thought the event was that important. I personally recommend this book to you. It is the best account of my average Americans fought World War II, and how they reacted to peace. Two had troubled lives. One was going to make a decent living, take care of his family, and serve his community.


Added:  Saturday, September 04, 2004
Reviewer:  usmcsgt65
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Language: eng

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This Day in History
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