|Staff Sgt George Douglas Idlett|
George Douglas Idlett, born Mar. 29, 1919, Marlow,
Okla., enlisted in the U.S. Army Air Corps at Ft. McArthur, Sept.
16th, 1940. After 6 weeks training and duty at Hamilton Field,
CA, his entire Squadron, the 20th Pursuit, was sent to the Philippines,
and stationed at Nichols Field. Just prior to the beginning of
the War, th eSq.wasmovedtoClarkField. Idlett was on the Airfield
during the bombing raids by the Japanese on the first day, the
8th of Dec., 1941.
The 20th was evacuated to Bataan on the 24th of Dec., and began operations from Bataan Field and Mariveles Field with the few remaining aircraft.
He also served as infantry during the battle at Longaskawayan Point. [Battle of the Points] On April 9th, 1942, the Bataan Forces were surrendered, and Idlett was taken prisoner near the Airstrip at Mariveles. He made the Death March, to San Fernando, then the train to Capas Station, and the march to Camp O'Donnell. He spent about one month at Camp O'Donnell, then was taken to Cabanatuan, where he worked on the various details, until Sept. 1943.
In Sept. he was sent to Japan on a freighter, the Coral Maru [Also known as Tagu Maru], landing at Moji City on Kyushu, then by train to Camp 5B near Niigata City, on Honshu, Japan. For the next two years, he worked as a stevedore at Rinko Coal Co., until the end of the war.
Idlett returned to the USA in October via Okinawa, Manila, Cebu, Vancouver, Seattle, and to Madigan General Hosp. in Tacoma.
He was awarded the Bronze Star, the Purple Heart; the POW, Good Conduct, American Defense, Asiatic - Pacific Campaign, American Campaign, WW II Victory, and the Philippine Defense medals. He also received the Combat Infantry Badge, the Presidential Unit Citation, with 2 clusters, and the Philippine Presidential Unit Citation. S/Sgt. Idlett was honorably discharged from the Army Feb. 6, 1946.
Married childhood sweetheart, Geraldine Goforth on March 9, 1946, and has two children, Deborah and Doug, Jr., plus one grandchild, Kaleigh. Retired from Government service in 1980 and now lives in Herndon, VA.