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Feather River Bulletin
Quincy, California
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May 23, 2001     Feather River Bulletin
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May 23, 2001
 

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~I,2B Wednesday, May 23, 2001 Real American BuLLetin. Pro( I I By Vi, oda Mnte W hand-to-hand assaults de- S|aft Writer signed to wrest from the It's taken 55 years, but the Japanese Conica} Hill, the vi- infantry unit one Plumas talkey to the eastern section of County resident served in the Shuri battle position." proudly and heroically, has fi- On May 13, Duniphin, a nally been recognized, sergeant, with Company F, A presidential citation was found himself involved in the issued to the 96th Infantry Di- attack on Conical Hill. The 1st vision Jan. 10, 2001, for "extra- Platoon had taken out 11 pill- ordinary heroism in military boxes, where the enemy had operations against an armed brought in reinforcements the enemy." night before. Moving forward, That recognition was sched- the 1st and the 3rd Platoons uled for 1946, but was either "reached a series of boulders left unsigned by the chief of half way up the slope with no staff or lost in the war depart- casualties and very little fire," ment. according to "The Stow of the Eldora Duniphin, of Quincy, 96th Infantry Division." seated next to her husband, "Sgts. Guy J. Dale and Den- showed him a copy of the cita- nis O. Duniphin, the two pla- tion. toon sergeants, were out of Turning the black and white touch with the company corn- pages, she explained what it mander, who was slightly to meant. Dennis, an Alzheirner's the rear, so they decided to patient at SunBridge in Quin- push on to the crest without cy, looked on; whether his waiting for orders." memory stirred to those far- By early afternoon, they had away days and his youth, no reached the top of the eastern one could tell. ridge. "...once the men were at the Joining up crest the Japanese reacted It was 1940 when Dennis very quickly and threw an en- Duniphin joined the Army. It tire company at our new posi- was a different way of life for Lions." an Oklahoma boy who came to Despite "knee-mortar fire," California to become a farm the Japanese began pouring hand. over the crest. Duniphin Training began at Fort Ord, wasn't for giving up. "...grab- then he was transferred to the bing a BAR, he stood up boldly Washington/Oregon area. He and unloaded it at the Japan- would receive extensive train- ese who were now within 10 ing over the years, before be- feet. Then he picked up an M-1 ing shipped out, Eldora ex- and emptied R. Men respond to plained, that kind of leadership and As Duniphin sailed into the Duniphin's were no excep- South Pacific, the 96th In- tion." fantr'y Division became his Following the lead, they held new family, with posts on the their ground and their posi- islands of Leyte and Okinawa, tion; where they managed to his new homes. The division dig in proved instrumental. was under the command of Duniphin's involvement Maj. Gem James L. Bradley. ended when an anti-tank mine The division wasn't a new took off both legs. one. It was formed during "He lost is legs at 3 p.m. in World War I, but never saw ac- the afternoon," Eldora said. tion. Reorganized, it was offi- "His best buddy had lost his cially incorporated into the leg that morning." U.S. Army on Aug. 15, 1942. Duniphin's battalion was In a speech, Bradley told his hard hit that day. Many men men they were going to be. whom Duniphin knew were in- come a well-trained combat di- jured or died, something that vision, and there was no time would disturb him throughout to waste, his life, Eldora said. "This is the kind of a divi- The 96th Infantry continued sion we are going to be: well its fight to gain control of Con- trained, tough physically and ical Hill, and by May 21, had mentally, ready and eager to captured enough of it to allow fight, not for our personal glo- ry or advancement but for the honor of the division and the service of our country." Bradley concluded, "We kill--or we get killed." Duniphin was to witness that before his days of serving ended. Okinawa The 96th Infantry Division's efforts were successful in knocking out key Japanese strongholds in Leyte, but their work wasn't done. troops to push on toward the community of Shuri, a key en- emy position. The final enemy positions on the Yuza-Yaeju- Dake escarpments, also fell to the division. By June 30, it was over. "The division killed a total of 37,763 of the enemy in 73 days of fighting," stated the presidential citation. "Its own battle losses totaled 7,294, in- cluding 1,504 killed." According to the citation, "The brilliant victories achieved by the 96th Division :/ l i ! Sgt. Dennis Dunlphin was entering his fifth year in the Army when the 96th Infantry Division was from San Francisco. Here, he was on the Island of Leyte, where troops were successful against the ing on to Okinawa. nmd New troops filled the places on Okinawa contributed great- " ; " t left vacant by those who were ly to the d efea, t of the large ene- ..... , killed or wounded, and the di- my garrison. .. _ . vision moved on, this time to "- * . .... Okinawa. They would land on mftw < .... " " '- . : :- " : .... . ' " .... ., . -- . ~:., - , :.. ~ ....... ~ .~ ...... ~-- ' -- __" _ ~ --~ the Japanese-held island April Finished with battle, ...... .... .... "-' ::" " ....... " ......... " : ...... ' " " " I, 1945, beginning immediately Duniphm.spent time in mili- - ' ' ' m with an assault on the Hagushi tary hospital.s, eventually re- Sgt, Ikm s nlphln of Company F, of the 96th infantry Division, dlscu the mmlng encounter with the beaches, according to the cita- turning to California. the capture of Conical Hill with his troops. tion. , For his gallantry, Duniphin Within three days, The di- received two Purple Hearts O-Day Memoria] |) iy reme mbe;r! vision then immediately at- and the Bronze Star. tacked rapidly and skillfully On Sept. 7, 1947, Dennis and south down the western half of Eldora Duniphin were mar- the island, overrunning and ried. destroying or driving in ene- Eldora said they had llved in By T mri Nacar . Waa. ntLCme ere they could We lost valiant [ my oUtpost lines and strong the same community, Tran- Po t0 a Editor "Battle of Midway ..... t ru. e victory hundreds, but the~ [ points guarding the approach- quiHity, but didn t know one As each year goes by, there Two small coral islands otonlY be known by all the The army fought i es to the main Japanese de- anomer until he returned from r .... .... -" are fewe and fewer men who two square miles - --- W-- ^ ..... s might. [ lense hub at Shuri." the war. are left to remember the Dot the Pacific which so , mvr cans applaud their " ast staunch bravery " ss [ As the days passed, the _ Following their marriage, agony, pain and the deep feel- tremendously v: _ -;n" Their progre I troops were able to continueDuniphin would work for he turn= W, mg of patriotism that was pre- Yet there .was t. .... T held down belo [ their successful attack of the Freedom Calculator ln the Bay sent during World War lI. point ofthe war withJaP __ men who served in But after a time ] island posts. Area. and then go on to repair On nOf ;wSea s2nd:Lt.L.B. Yes, thefut 'ec ;Uua'ue" Wr UgrWa r.t dT e nm wonouL o.o I | On May 1, the division was smau appttances. Stra a bombardier, right there me has*.-;- -- y heart, let They conti [ withdrawn for nine days of They had seven children and a retired police ofIlcer : ' - '=--"- We o hopingjusttosur;:# ]! I rest. Theywere returning to during those years. Today, Strawn's brother, Man leld :From June second tomes u' kee;0d e all who served to Wl lle, to freed. [ i fight when news of the allied they have an additional 12Strawn, was killed in action in of nineteen forty two . :" e As we reeaom, remained devoUt ed at thiS piac remember [ forces' victory in Europe grandchildren and 12 great- the European Theater of Oper. A battle rag foughtthe those who i | reached them. , grandchildren, ation. : , called Midway% . had BA Othertales I I But the fighting wasn t over The couple, long familiar His half brother, RobertThe Japs didn t ?mow we :tas OF MIDWAY. like the Battle of l for the 96th Infantry Division. with Plumas County, a fa- Mann, in the Pacific cracked hey,d, again, "D-Day, June 6, 1944" And the braverY | "No one who was with the vorite hunting and fishing spot aurmg u ana toughtin mey .... Two ....... snownmere. | I 96th on VE-day can ever forget for Duniphin, decided to make the Korean War as well. surprise the U. after s .a mst to the day, Let me hastenJi [ that wet, miserable day, re-it their permanent home 36 Being the last male child in ....... ve Norm -mef Midway- prtancefD'Da-Y, | | lares "The Story of the 96th In- years ago, Eldora said. | fantry Division." . Until his health prevented | Traveling through rain and him from attending reunions [ ankle-deep mud, the soldiers of the 96th Infantry, gldora | once again headed toward bat. said they attended several of | fie. -the gatherings. He is a life | "The sloggIng soldiers were member of the Veterans of For- [ not oblivious of the signifi- eign Wars, and received the [ cance of the day, but in the ira- Purple Heart. | mediacy of their own tomor. Thinking back over the | rows, it seemed very far away years they spent together, El- / and very unimportant, dora said that Duniphin would rices and lives lost to secure The navy ha there to ---'- vance, from But, in memo [ And, as the men marched, occasionally talkabouthisex. s iii | they were about to encounter periences in the Army, but | what the military would call most of the conversations took l "a series of bitter, bloody, place with his sons-in-law. | Visit our Web site: www.p4umasnews.com