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John Heilman, 2007

  • Branch of Service: United States Marine Corp
  • Enlisted 1942

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

:12 - Enlisted into the Marines at the age of 21 in 1942
:49 - Journey after enlistment.
7:08 - Came down with malaria and was sent to the San Diego hospital.
7:41 - Incident in Gaudalcanal
12:34 - Time in the Marshall Islands
15:53 - Dropping of the atomic bomb on Japan
18:09 - Memories of the war
18:36 - Explanation of why he enlisted for the war.

J.B. Heilman Jr. Obituary 

The interview was recorded at an SDPB event in Miller, SD. 

Images Provided by John Heilman 

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American soldiers prepare a mass grave for Japanese casualties on the Marshall Islands. (PDF)

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GIs remove Japanese bodies after a battle on the Marshall Islands. (PDF)

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The Marshall Islands. "How would you like to crawl through that?" Says John Heilman who had the experience. (PDF)

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American soldiers were laid to rest on the Marshall Islands. (PDF)

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

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