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EDWARD T. REDFIELD
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Edward T. Redfield

Pfc "E" Company, 503d PRCT

K.I.A., James Ravine, Corregidor

 Sunday 18 February 1945

 

Whitson's platoon had advanced only fifty yards along the road leading into (James) ravine when it received fire from a Nambu machine gun. With an opening three round adjustment burst from a concealed position somewhere on the ravine floor, the Japanese machine gunner managed to kill the platoon's lead scout, Private First Class James S. Segobia. The enemy gunner quickly shifted his point of aim to Private First Class Edward T. Redfield, the next man in line, and wounded him severely with a second burst of three. 

Realizing that they had walked right into the enemy's line of fire, Whitson's men withdrew several yards before hitting the dirt and taking cover along the shoulders of the road. As was his custom during such situations, Whitson rushed forward at a crouch from his position in the middle of the platoon to see exactly what had happened. Arriving at the head of his troops, he dropped to the ground and crawled on all fours until he was within ten feet of where the badly wounded Private Redfield lay motionless in a ditch beside the road. Machine gun bullets were kicking up clods of dirt all around Redfield's partially protected position, making his rescue an impossibility until the enemy gun was silenced. Whitfield slapped a clip of tracer ammo into his carbine and motioned a nearby Browning automatic rifleman, Private Carroll F. Redding, to come forward and join him.

The lieutenant pointed down in the general direction of the machine gun nest then squeezed off three fast tracer rounds to clearly mark its location. He said to Redding, 'I'm going to run out and drag Redfield back here where our medic can go to work on him. You keep that machine gunner's head down until I get back in here with Redfield. I'll take off running just as soon as you start shooting."

Enemy riflemen were also beginning to fire on his grounded platoon as Whitson turned toward the wounded trooper and raised himself up, cocking one leg like a runner in the blocks waiting for the starter's pistol shot. Keeping his eyes riveted on the wounded trooper to his front, Whitson waited for his automatic rifleman to start firing. When some thirty seconds had passed and there still was no sound of his covering fire Whitson became annoyed. Turning around, he saw Private Redding slumped dead on top of his weapon. He had been killed by a sniper's bullet.

Seeing what had happened, several riflemen from Whitson's platoon slithered forward on their bellies to the edge of the road where they began banging away at the machine gun nest. Whitson then dashed out to Private Redfield and dragged him back to safety. But this valiant rescue action proved to be in vain as the grievously wounded Redfield died within minutes after being rescued.

Gerard M. Devlin
Back to Corregidor

St Martin's Press, New York (1992) 
(out of print)

    

                


 

 

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Last Updated: 09-04-10