Skip to main content
SDPB Homefront Stories


Fred Houda, 2007

  • Branch of Service: United States Army

Listen to the following sections by scrolling forward to the timecode.

0:00 - Introduction (witnessed history) 
1:00 - Sent overseas; shelling Iwo Jima; Japanese soldiers were underground; guns brought up with hydraulics
5:00 - Charged Iwo Jima from the ship, scared; lost friends on the island; describes the size of the small island 
7:10 - Bloody battle; bodies laid for 15 days on the sand, gathered into piles; some soldiers assigned to remove their belongings; Japanese soldiers dug in, difficult to take
11:50 - We wanted the island for an airstrip 
14:44 - Enola Gay, which dropped the 1st atomic bomb, landed on the way to Hiroshima  
15:48 - Did not think about the bomb that was dropped on Hiroshima; too busy; guns firing 24 hrs/day; leaflets dropped encouraging the enemy to surrender - one soldier surrendered and was killed, no one else surrendered
23:00 - War ended; Japanese soldiers were encouraged to surrender, but they would not come out of the ground; water was difficult to get 
25:52 - Mount Suribachi flag raising 

Fred Houda Obituary   

Independent Submission

For more information about SDPB's educational resources 
and services contact Steven Rokusek at or at (605) 222-3422

The HOMEFRONT SOUTH DAKOTA STORIES Project was Sponsored in Part By: