My Great Uncle, Claude A. Lynd, was one of the many Marines and soldiers evacuated to the USS Solace, from Iwo Jima, on Feb 23, 1944. He, among many others, had been waiting on the beach for her to arrive so he could be treated for an abdominal wound caused by enemy fire.
Sadly, his wound was too great and he had gone too
long without surgical care. He died the next day, February 24th, on the way to Pearl Harbor. He is buried at The National Memorial Cemetery in Honolulu.
My Grandmother (Claude's sister) told me stories about him before she passed away. He was a nice guy, she said. He was short - just over 5' 7". He was a new Marine Corporal, just out of boot camp in the Summer of 1943, and only 19 when he died, just 6 months later.
He may have been young, and not a big guy, but he was a Marine; Proud. And brave.
I was born 24 years after he died. I asked my Grandmother for his Purple Heart when I was in my 20's. I have it displayed on my wall now.
I'm sorry we never got a chance to meet, Uncle Claude, but I have thought about you often over the years.
May your soul be at peace...far away from the horrors of war.