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836th Engineering Aviation Battalion

Discussion in 'Air War in the Pacific' started by cruisefor2, Jul 31, 2010.

  1. cruisefor2

    cruisefor2 recruit

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    My father is celebrating his 89th birthday this year. He served proudly served in the 836th, but to this day, never talks much about action his unit saw while constructing airfields in the Pacific Theatre for our guys to land and operate from. I believe his memories are just to painful for him to discuss. Over the years, my Dad has shared only a few memories and shown me one photo he still has of himself in a Japanese machine gun emplacement his unit over-ran and captured.

    I would be interested in hearing from any and all who can provide information on the 836th role in WWII.

    Thanks in advance.
     
  2. LRusso216

    LRusso216 Graybeard Staff Member Patron  

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    Here's a bit about Engineer Aviation Battalions in general with some details about the 836th. It comes from Hyperwar, put together by one of our own:
    HyperWar: Army Air Forces in WWII: Volume VII: Services Around the World [Chapter 10]

    From the same source, read also through this segment
    HyperWar: US Army in WWII: The Approach to the Philippines

    I'm sure others will come along with more places to look.

    I did come across a link to a unit history, but it was listed on Ebay and sold a few years ago. Perhaps you could locate a copy.
    Book: WWII 836th Engineer Aviation BN history & album
     
  3. cruisefor2

    cruisefor2 recruit

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    Thanks for suggesting a couple of places to look.

    I look forward to other insightful replies.

    Thanks again.
     
  4. VBaldwin

    VBaldwin recruit

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    My father was Capt. Jack E. Baldwin of the 836th Battalion. He died some years ago, but I have photos, letters, commendations and a book about the 836th written by a man named Walter Merz. I will go through the book and other and see if I can find your father! My dad did share with me some info when I asked, he hated the bombing and his favorite Sgt. was killed. He also hated when they had to use the fire throwers to get the Japanese out of the caves. I have pictures of the officers quarters built by the Phillipinos that are just amazing. Dad loved the Phillipinos and has letters from them. I also have a very naughty piece of Japanese propaganda dropped from planes that my father picked up. It was directed to the Aussies about what the yanks were doing to their women! If you like, I would be happy to send copies of anything you might be interested in seeing. In the meantime I will look through for you Dad.
    Sincerely, Victoria Baldwin
     
  5. VBaldwin

    VBaldwin recruit

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    Sorry! Forgot to ask your Dad's name!
    VBaldwin
     
  6. VBaldwin

    VBaldwin recruit

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    Capt. Jack E. Baldwin was part of company A Officers.
     
  7. LRusso216

    LRusso216 Graybeard Staff Member Patron  

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    Hello, Victoria, and thanks for your information. Unfortunately, the original poster has not been around for about nine months. You might try the links I posted above to see if they provide any details that are unknown to you.
     
  8. VBaldwin

    VBaldwin recruit

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    Thank you so much Lou! I didn't think to look at the date on the blog as I was directed to this site by google and kind of found you all by accident. Appreciate your help.
    Sincerely, Vicky
     
  9. LRusso216

    LRusso216 Graybeard Staff Member Patron  

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  10. dusty825

    dusty825 Member

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    My grandfather served with Co C 836th Engr AvnBn..
    his name was Alonzo Rufus Miller View attachment 14880
     

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  11. dusty825

    dusty825 Member

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    On a sad note i found this while looking for info on the 836th.
    March 5, 2011
    Frank Santiago “Butch” Rodrigues, 86, of Kapolei, a retiree of Pearl Harbor Naval Shipyard Shop No. 1126 and an Army veteran of Company C, 836th Engineer Aviation Battalion, died in Charleston, S.C. He was born in Wailuku. He is survived by sons Frank M., David L. and John M.; daughter Sandra M.R. Botelho; brother Gilbert P.; sisters Virginia R. Moniz, Betty M. Miranda, Gladys M. Salas, Jenny R. Hamasaki and Rita R. Kaopio; six grandchildren; and five great-grandchildren. Visitation: 9 a.m. Friday at Mililani Downtown Mortuary. Services: 10 a.m. Committal services: 1 p.m. at Hawaii State Veterans Cemetery, Kaneohe. Flowers welcome.
     
  12. Mike Polkowske

    Mike Polkowske New Member

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    My father, SRT Gordon A. Polkowske, CO A 836th EAB, and I have a copy of his Honorable discharge. Served from 11-3-44 to 11-20-46. Battles: Southern Philippines, Decorations: Asiatic Pacific Theater Ribbon w/1 Bronze Battle Star, Philippine Liberation Ribbon w/1 Bronze Battle Star, Victory Medal, Good Conduct Medal, and Army of Occupation Medal Japan. Gordon was born in Rochester MN, entered into service at Fort Snelling MN, and place of separation was @ Fort Sheridan ILL.

    Gordon passed away on 6-7-2012, at the St. Pete, FL VA Hospice. My mother recently passed away on 1-28-16 at Bradenton, FL. My dad did not talk about WWII with any of us, and mother, if she knew anything, never talked about the war. He did mention in a letter to my mom, a good friend, an officer, had been killed. He did mention the ammunition caves and how he enjoyed playing softball while in Japan. He usually was the catcher, and said there was pitcher in the squad that could really throw the heat. My dad after the war returned to Rochester and worked for his father Arthur (WWI Vet) on the farm, and later worked for the US Post Office and the Rochester Diary as an engineer. He retired in 1983 to Bradenton FL, close to his mother Helen.

    I have found several old army pictures of my dad and others, that appear to be taken in Japan (I think). Not the best, but if any of you are interested, I can try to scan the print and attach later.

    If any of you have information about the "Battles", "Decorations", "Japan Occupation", "Photos", Other 836 Info Sources, please respond.

    Thank you,
    Mike Polkowske (Son)
    PO Box 88
    West Yellowstone, MT 59758
     
  13. bassbum

    bassbum New Member

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    At 6 years old, I know this is a long shot but if you're out there, any info on the 836th would be appreciated particularly locating Walter Merz book.
    We have a cache of letters between my FIL Raymond Adam Orth, 836th, Co. Unk., 44-46, and my MIL plus a photo of a Japanese boy standing in a barracks door who I'd love to identify.
    All help appreciated!!
     
  14. Biak

    Biak Adjutant

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    Welcome to the forum Mike and bassbum. Feel free to post any pictures. We like pictures :)
     
  15. Cory

    Cory New Member

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  16. Cory

    Cory New Member

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  17. Cory

    Cory New Member

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  18. Cory

    Cory New Member

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    Hope these help, like many before my grandfather didn't share a lot of info about the war. My my father knows a few stories.
     

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