This year’s Symposium, Closing the Circle: The Philippines and Iwo Jima
will focus on two of the most fascinating aspects of World War II. Even after a series of important victories by the Allies in 1944, the Japanese still showed no signs of capitulation. Thus Allied commanders decided to move ahead on two key goals: the long awaited return to the Philippines and the need to capture Iwo Jima.
The Symposium is open to the public.
Fredericksburg High School Auditorium
Highway 16 South at Milam, Fredericksburg, Texas
20 and 21 September 2009
9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. each day
$40 per person for Admiral Nimitz Foundation members
$50 per person for non-members
Box lunches are available for an additional $9 each day. Attendees may have dinner with the panelists Saturday evening in the Admiral Nimitz Museum Ballroom for $40 per person. The Symposium is FREE for Students (with appropriate ID) (not including meals) and students are encouraged to attend, but they MUST REGISTER. Please provide Age, Grade and School. Participants may register at this website or they may call the Admiral Nimitz Foundation at 830-997-8600.
In summing up the significance of the fall Symposium, eminent historian Richard Frank stated that savage fighting characterized the final months of WWII in the Pacific as American forces pushed hard for Japanese capitulation. The B-29s and Submarine Service brought to a crescendo the alternative strategy to invasion: blockade and bombardment. B-29 mine-laying joined to three years of submarine depredations brought Japanese overseas and domestic shipping near to collapse – with dire implications for Japan’s food situation. Ever more massive raids by B-29s devastated 66 Japanese cities by fire and two with atomic bombs, killing approximately 410,000. Of the 3,895 B-29s built, 414 were lost from all causes with 2,148 aircrews killed. The “Silent Service” lost 52 submarines in the war with 3,506 crewmen killed – the highest fatality rate (22%) in a combat service.
For accommodation and other information about Fredericksburg, please contact the Fredericksburg Convention and Visitors Bureau at 888-997-3600, or check their website: www.fredericksburg-texas.com
. The symposium’s headquarters are: The Inn on Baron’s Creek, 308 South Washington St., telephone 866-990-0202.
Sponsors include the Admiral Nimitz Foundation, Texas Historical Commission, U.S. Naval Institute, Fredericksburg Independent School District, Texas Tech University and St. Edwards University.
Saturday, 19 September
Overview: Historian Richard Frank: Setting the stage for the fight for Manila, "the Pearl of the Orient", Corregidor, General Douglas MacArthur; and strategic choices.
Naval/Air Operations: LST's, amphibious landings and air support. Expected speakers include: Historian Barrett Tillmann with veterans Ken Wiley, Lucky 13 LST; Ken Jones, USS Colorado; and Everett McKay, mine sweeper.
The Battle for Manila: Historian Richard Meixsel with veterans Frank Mendez, 1st Cavalry, 8th Regiment; Joseph B. Jones, US Army, 1st Cavalry; Liz Irvine, POW Santo Tomas; and John Marek, 37th Division.
Rescue/Special Operations: Historian Gordon Rottman with veterans Harry Akune, USA, MIS, who jumped with paratroopers at Corregidor; MGEN Robert Shirkey, USA Alamo Scouts; Eunice Carvajal, Intelligence - Guerrilla Forces; Edward McCreary, POW camp; and Joseph Jones in support off 6th Ranger Battalion.
The Final Actions:
Veterans Fred Dietel, USA; John Marek, USA; MGen Robert Shirkey, USA; Jim Tuttle from 32nd Division; Harry Akune, MIS; and Carl Patrinos, 32nd Division.
Conclusions Panel - Featuring the Day's Historians.
Sunday, 20 September
Overview: Strategic choices, role of Admiral Chester Nimitz, and the impact of delay related to the Philippines.
Naval Operations: Historian Paul Stillwell with L.D. Cox, USS Indianapolis; Abbott Sparks, USS Estes; and Jack Smalling, USS Hackleback.
Air Support: Historian Barrett Tillman with veterans Bill Brown, P-51; John Dragoni, B-29 photo reconnaissance; and Navy Flight Nurses/Corpsmen/Construction Battalions' representatives.
Japanese Resistance: Dr. Richard Meixsel
Ground Operations: Historian Richard Frank with veterans Herschel "Woody" Williams, USMC, flame thrower and Medal of Honor recipient; Milton Saxon, 4th Marine Division; MGen Fred Haynes, USMC (Ret), 5th Marine Division; Frank Guidone, USMC; and Keith Wells, USMCR.
Conclusions Panel: Featuring the Day's Historians.
The Museum Bookstore has the following books which provide useful background on the subjects to be discussed during the fall Symposium on the retaking of the Philippines and the battle for Iwo Jima:
The Liberation of the Philippines and Victory in the Pacific both by Samuel Eliot Morison, paperback, $9.95 each
Flags of our Fathers by James Bradley, paperback, $14
The Ghosts of Iwo Jima by Robert Burrell, hardback, $29.95
War in the Pacific (covers both topics) by Bernard Nalty, oversized paperback, $24.95
Iwo by Richard Wheeler, paperback, $18.95
American Ceasar: Douglas MacArthur 1880 - 1964 by William Manchester, paperback, $17.99