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Joseph Coleman, United States Navy

Joseph Calvin Coleman enlisted in the US Navy in October 1943, shortly after graduating from St. Clairsville High School, and just a few weeks before turning 18. He was sent to Great Lakes, IL for 6 weeks of Boot Camp. After Boot Camp, he attended Northwestern University for 6 months to train as a radio operator. He was then assigned as a 2nd Class Petty Officer to a new ship, the USS LCI-649 as a radio operator. They sailed from New York to Honolulu; from there his ship carried Marine and Army troops for Practice Maneuvers in the Pacific Islands.

 

Later on in the war, they sailed to the Solomon Islands, rescuing soldiers who had been left behind in battle. He was also in Guam, Saipan and eventually in the Philippines, where they trained for the invasion of Okinawa, which occurred on Easter Sunday in 1945 and lasted 3 months. After the war ended in 1945, his ship sailed the Yellow River, delivering supplies to Marines still fighting in Communist China. Upon leaving China, the ship was caught in a typhoon and dry docked in the Philippines for repairs before heading for home. He was discharged in April, 1946.