Iwo Jima, Friday, 9 March 1945
This was the day Turkey Knob finally fell, as Regimental Combat Team (RCT) 25 stormed Japanese positions which had held out nearly two weeks. In some places, RCT 25 advanced several hundred yards—an exceptional distance—joining another regiment and leaving only scattered pockets of resistance behind. The Third Division, crossing the center of the island, split Japanese forces in two by reaching the sea, and sent back a canteen of seawater (for inspecting, not drinking, they explained) to prove their accomplishment.
The right flank, where the 3/25 battalion was, had moved less than one thousand yards in two weeks; it was the door hinge the rest of the Fourth Division swung around.
The man Hudson already knew as “a coward—and a disgrace to the Marine Corps” left the platoon because of a toothache.
Excerpts are from Fighting the Unbeatable Foe: Iwo Jima and Los Alamos, now republished as a 75th anniversary edition in paperback and Kindle.