Veteran Roy Earle, of Norway, will talk about his experiences with the 4th Marine Division in WWII, at the Norway Memorial Library on May 30. (Submitted image)

NORWAY — In recognition of Memorial Day, the Norway Memorial Library will host a talk by World War II veteran Roy Earle on Thursday, May 30, at 6:30 p.m. He will share his experiences, both heart-wrenching and humorous, in the 4th Marine Division of the Pacific. The program is free and open to the public.

Roy Earle was born in 1924 in Montclair, New Jersey, and he grew nearby in the city of Bloomfield, where he graduated from high school in 1942. Knowing he would soon be drafted, he made the decision to enlist in the U.S. Marine Corps in late 1942, 11 months after the U.S. joined the conflict.

Earle did his recruit training at Parris Island, South Carolina, and in January 1943 he started the Field Lineman’s Course at 2nd Telephone Company at Camp Lejeune, where he received his communicator’s MOS.

In August 1943, he made the cross-country move to Camp Pendleton, California, where his unit was redesignated Company “A” 4th pioneer battalion, part of the newly formed 4th Marine Division. In December 1943, Roy joined the First Joint Assault Signal Company (JASCO), his final reassignment. JASCO’s role was to set up communications for the assault troops, maintaining constant communications between the beach and the front-line troops, moving inland to replace communicators who were killed or wounded.

In January 1944, the men were deployed overseas, going directly into combat in the Marshall Islands. Over the next 13 months, Earle was in constant operations combat against the Japanese, participating in vicious battles in Saipan, Tinian, and Iwo Jima.

When the war ended in September 1945, Earle was in Hawaii, where his unit was training to invade Japan itself. He returned to the U.S. in October, where he was discharged at age 21. For his service, Earle received the two Presidential Unit Citations awarded the 4th Marine Division, the Navy Unit Citation awarded JASCO, the American Campaign Medal, the Asiatic Pacific Campaign Medal with four bronze battle stars, and the World War II Victory Medal.

Back in New Jersey, Earle went back to work, and also attended college at Rutgers. After 25 years at Hoffman LaRoche, he retired and changed careers, becoming a teacher at Ricker College in Houlton, Maine, and later a professor at Casco Bay College in Portland. (Source: http://www.crestwood.on.ca/ohp/earle-roy/.)

For information, call the library’s information desk at 743-5309, Ext. 1, or visit www.norway.lib.me.us.

 


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