DAY WITH THE RATTLESNAKES"
& Paul Whitman
WITH THE RATTLESNAKES
Company descends Grubbs Ravine
is said about historians that everything they write is absolutely
accurate, except those circumstances about which you have a close personal
knowledge and which they got completely wrong. Well, sometimes I feel
that way about the "F" Company History,
because, as Bill McDonald once told me, "If you're
thrown in a den of rattlesnakes, you won't forget one moment of it."
The entry in the "F" Company History for 22 February 1945 which
gives me cause for serious doubt is as follows:
platoon moved down Sheeny Ravine in the attack & met heavy enemy
resistance consisting of rifle and machine gun fire. During this attack Pfc.
Narrow, Yocum, & Sgt (Pvt) George Mikel was killed.
Stanley Stanley Maciborski was lightly wounded in
action. Company strength is 3 officers and 100 EM.."
start with, it was not down Sheeny (or even Cheney) but Grubbs Ravine that we went.
Secondly, having half of one’s face blown off by a shot gun at close
range does not, in my assessment, constitute being “lightly wounded”. Thirdly, I seriously doubt the Company strength count. Only
two officers were present for duty - Dan Lee had scalp
wounds received in the attack in the Ordnance Machine Shop on the
19th. The 1st platoon was down to 17 EM's, and all platoons had suffered
casualties. I don't believe the second platoon had hardly any more for duty
than the 1st platoon. The 3rd platoon had numerous casualties as did the 4th
platoon. There were 11 jump casualties alone - I don't feel there were over
80-85 present for duty at this time. When we returned to Mindoro, the company
was half strength. Some was due to illness.
rather than tell you about what the descent of "F" Company into Grubbs Raviner was not, let me tell you what it was.