Bill Calhoun
with Paul Whitman




Battery Hearn prior to the drop. The hill atop the magazine at the rear of  the battery, Calhoun's Hill, is now overgrown, and few visitors to the island are told that  it was the site of a co-ordinated  Japanese attempt to break out of the ravines and take Topside. (National Archives)



Extract "F" Company History
18 February, 1945

The attack by the 503d platoon described in the "F" Co. history was the 1st platoon's occupation of Battery Smith,  met with no opposition. The three officers were 1st Lt. Bill Bailey, 1st Lt. Bill Calhoun, and  1st Lt. Dan A. Lee.  The latter was a replacement officer who had joined us just a short time before the Corregidor jump and had been assigned to 2nd Battalion Headquarters Company.   With "F" being short of available officers, Lee had been assigned to "F" for this day.


Bill Calhoun

"There were some forty or more bodies of the enemy dead lying around, mostly within our perimeter this morning.  I do not know if any were killed during the night.  I doubt it.  I feel these were killed during the afternoon of the 16th and the day of the 17th.  I never did find any evidence that the enemy was trying to infiltrate our position during the night of the 16th. 

The wind rattling the tin was the enemy.  In the bright, clear early morning sunlight the area looked so desolate and ravaged, it reminded me of pictures I had seen of devastated areas in World War I.  Smoke was still coming from the magazines of Battery Wheeler, and the odor of burned flesh hung in the breeze, permeated the area.  The heat from Wheeler was still radiating out quite a distance, discouraging close examination.  One thing was certain, and that was  there were no Japs alive in Battery Wheeler no matter how many tunnels led into it. The great battery, so awesome and impregnable yesterday, was now a tomb.

Gifford said thirty to forty Japs had run out of the battery just before the flames erupted.  Along with the Americans, they had raced shoulder to shoulder toward the cliffs, with only one thought in mind for this brief moment.  That single thought was to escape the terrible tongues of flame which were reaching out seeking to engulf them.  One "D" Company man, Pfc. Thomas T. DeLane was killed.  One man broke his leg and was dragged along by his buddies in terrible pain.  It was later determined that about 65 Japs were incinerated inside the battery.


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