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"I was glad I was there for the history of it, same for Pearl Harbor." (Video Interview, 45:38)

   John L. Cockburn
Collection image
John Cockburn, detail from video
War: World War, 1939-1945
Branch: Marine Corps
Unit: 13th Marines, 5th Marine Division, USS Maryland
Service Location: Kansas City, Missouri; San Diego, California; Pearl Harbor, Hawaii; Tarawa Atoll (Gilbert Islands); Iwo Jima; Japan
Rank: Sergeant
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John Cockburn had been a Marine for nearly eight months on December 7, 1941, when he was stationed on the USS Maryland in Pearl Harbor. His most memorable experience in the war came as part of an artillery company that landed on Iwo Jima on its D-Day, February 19, 1945, when the Marines suffered over 6,000 casualties. Cockburn took some shrapnel in his arm but only missed a few days of action; he saw the raising of the flag on Mt. Surabachi from the deck of a ship while recuperating.

Interview (Video)
»Interview Highlights  (2 clips)
»Complete Interview 
Download: video (82 min.)
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»The War
 Video (Interview Excerpts) (2 items)
Going in on the first day of the invasion at Iwo Jima; landing on the wrong beach; supporting the 28th Marines, who were trying to take Mount Surabachi; wounded and missing the raising of the flag. (07:43) The awful conditions on Iwo Jima; his worst night on the island; at a cemetery trying to identify bodies; no regrets about being in the battle (03:18) 

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  The Library of Congress  >> American Folklife Center
  October 26, 2011
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