On 24 December Lieutenant Colonel Donald
Curtis, the regimental executive officer, was directed to move
Lieutenant Colonel "Red" Anderson's 2d Battalion to Mariveles
without delay Curtis began work at once. At 1800, 24 December,
Captain Benjamin L. McMakin, Company F commander, called his
officers and noncommissioned officers together and said simply,
"Gentlemen, it is Christmas Eve. We move all night." The 2d
Battalion boarded trucks and began the move to Mariveles at 2000
with truck convoys continuing for the following two days and nights
to move the regimental ammunition and equipment. As night fell on 26
December all personnel, equipment, and supplies were in place in the
jungle near Mariveles.
Admiral Rockwell ordered a detail of Marines under Major Frank P.
Pyzick to destroy the Olongapo Navy Yard. At the first blast of
explosives, the power plant engineer cut off all power to the Yard
and disappeared. All demolition work came to a stop until a Marine
working party restored power to detonate the remaining explosive
charges. The obsolete cruiser USS Rochester was towed into
Subic Bay and sunk by depth charges blowing open her hull. The PBY
ramp was destroyed and all aviation fuel and submarine supplies were
"The hard part," remembered
Private First Class Wilbur M. Marrs, "was destroying all the
footlockers that had the deep carved chests inside filled with ivory
jade, silk robes, and other souvenirs" that were carefully brought
out of Shanghai. Marrs later wrote, "Buildings and equipment that
were not blown up, we poured fuel on, including these footlockers."
All structures, except for the main building of the Marine Barracks,
were left in flames as the Marine detachment departed the Navy Yard
for the last time at 1900, 26 December.