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"Most people when they are in combat the first time they're the worst scared. But I thought the other way. The first few times I wasn't scared, but this time [on Iwo Jima] I was really scared." (Video Interview, 48:20.2)

   Kenneth E. Bramlett
Collection image
Kenneth Bramlett, detail from video
War: World War, 1939-1945
Branch: Marine Corps
Unit: 3rd Battalion, 14th Marine Regiment, 4th Marine Division
Service Location: Pacific Theater; Parris Island, South Carolina; Quantico, Virginia; Camp Pendleton, California; Marshall Islands; Tinian and Saipan (Northern Mariana Islands); Iwo Jima; Hawaii
Rank: Private First Class
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Kenneth Bramlett enlisted in the Marines in November 1942, and what early fighting in the Pacific he missed was made up for in the later island invasions. The intensity of artillery fire on the last one, Iwo Jima, marked his first encounter with fear for his life. For the first several days of the fighting, the shelling was so withering that the Marines were unable to bury their dead.

Interview (Video)
»Interview Highlights  (3 clips)
»Complete Interview 
Download: video (82 min.)
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»The War
 Video (Interview Excerpts) (3 items)
Landing on the first day amid heavy artillery fire; working fast to unload trucks (49:10) Seeing the large number of casualties; the first couple of days unable to bury any of the dead; casualties in his own unit (02:30) Japanese lived in tunnels in Iwo Jima; pre-invasion bombing did little damage to them; getting hit by shrapnel; not injured enough to miss anything. (03:12)

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  October 26, 2011
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