USN Beach Party
Carusi's Thieves
Sailors Dressed Like Soldiers
Heroism at D-Day
Navy Medicine
Casualty Letters
Lt. Len Lewis KIA
Cox Amin Isbir KIA
Beachmaster Vaghi
Navy Radiologist
D-Day Lessons
Bronze Star
Battleship New Jersey
Dr. Lee Parker
BUMED Interview
Congressional Record
Lt. Jack Hagerty
Albert Seychel
Stamp Unveiled
John Gallagher
D-Day Gap Assault
WWII Memorial D-Day + 60
Dr. Richard Borden
Lawrence Powell
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USN Beach Party  
U.S. 6th Naval Beach Battalion
By Ensign, W.N. Turner, USNR

The Beach Party consists of three officers and forty-three enlisted men to each platoon. Each company consists of three platoons and the battalion contains three companies.

Each platoon is broken down into four sections. They are as follows: The Hydrographic Section, The Boat Repair Section, The Communications Section and The Medical Section.

Attached is a chart showing a complete breakdown of our own beach party company. Lt. (jg) E.V. Hall, Company B Commander, is the Regimental Beachmaster. Ensign W.D. Ludwig is the Company Communications Officer. Lt. Hall has a staff of seven men to aid him in running a regimental beach.

Lt(jg) Emmett V. Hall
Lt(jg) Walter Cooper
Ens. W.D. Ludwig
Lt(jg) Virgil S, Weathers
Ens. William N. Turner
Lt(jg) Ralph A. Hall
Ens. Almon L. Hagerty
Ens. E.B. Gostin
Lt(jg) Eugene D. Guyton
Lt(jg) George E. Wade
Ens. James E. Allison
Lt(jg) James F. Collier
Demolition Officer
Communications Officer
Beachmaster Platoon B-4
Asst. Beachmaster Platoon B-4
Medical Officer Platoon B-4
Beachmaster Platoon B-5
Asst. Beachmaster Platoon B-5
Medical Officer Platoon B-5
Beachmaster Platoon B-6
Asst. Beachmaster Platoon B-6
Medical Officer Platoon B-6

Briefly, I shall give a description of the duties of each of the four sections of a platoon. The hydrographic section contains all right arm rates. This section is divided on the beach into smaller sections and stationed at the most convenient places for craft to land. While craft are on the beach, they handle the bowlines of these to prevent them from broaching. All salvage work is handled by these men. Channels and satisfactory landing conditions are marked by buoys. Underwater surveys are made to ascertain where, if any, obstacles are located so that they may be removed or marked so that craft will stay clear of them. They clear the beach of all obstructions, especially at low tide, to make it safe for craft landing at high tide and to facilitate transportation of vehicles on the beach. In cases of emergency, this section will also act as litter bearers.

The duties of the Boat Repair section are to maintain and repair the small boats which become damaged on their way into the beach. In the regimental phase, one main pool is established to repair all damaged craft and is maintained by all boat repair sections. When necessary, this section will act as litter bearers or help with the hydrographic work.

The communications section work in conjunction with your message center. They handle shore to ship communications by means of radio, flashing lights and semaphore flags. When in a regimental phase, these men handle lateral communications between the beaches.

The duties of the Naval Medical section are to land with the assault troops, set up an evacuation and first aid station; clear the beach of the wounded and give them first aid and make arrangements to evacuate patients back over the beach to the transports awaiting out at sea. As soon as the invading forces set up their evacuation system, our Navy station is the last link in the chain back to the ships.

The demolition units, with Lt. (jg) Cooper in charge, [D-Day Gap Assault Teams] are responsible for clearing all underwater obstacles which may hinder the landing of troops or supplies and to assist in demolition of all obstacles as beach mines up to the high tide line.

Although nothing definite has been decided as to the position of these units in the waves, the most probable position will be post assault with duties of clearing all obstacles, mines and booby traps remaining after a previous beach barrage.

Obstacles which may be encountered and which these units are trained to cope with are: barbed wire, horned scullys, Belgium element "C," reinforced walls, tubular scaffolding and A.T.C. mines.

The rest of our group consists of two bakers and eight cooks, whose duties are self-explanatory. Also, we have with us nine Stewart's mates who, ordinarily, take care of the officer's mess and quarters.

Hale Boyle Looks for Relative, Finds Him-In D-Day Grave

War correspondent Hal Boyle, "AP's first columnist," covered World War II beginning in 1942, resulting in the Pulitzer Prize in 1945. When he retired in 1974, after 30 years with the Associated Press, Boyle had written 7,680 columns. He also had a personal interest in the 6th Naval Beach Battalion.

By Hal Boyle

SAINT LAURENT-SUR-MER, FRANCE, July 5, 1944 (Delayed) (AP) - I finally caught up with John Norbert Murphy after searching the war zones for more than a year.

Almost seven years ago my older brother, Ed, married John's sister, Monica, in Kansas City. John wasn't even in high school then.

When I was back home last spring Monica asked if I had ever come across her "kid brother."

Landed In Italy

"He is in the navy and landed with a navy beach party during the invasion of Sicily last July," she said. "He talked to some other correspondents and learned you had landed with General Patton on the same stretch of beach, but wasn't able to get in touch with you."

When I went to England in May I still couldn't find him.

Today I found him, over here.

He was lying in plot B, row five, grave 84, of the first American cemetery in France in World war 2.

Flower On Grave

Into the mound of earth was a stake to which was wired his identifying "dog tag." And a withered Normandy rose left there by French peasants who have put a flower over each of 2,000 American graves in the cemetery.

The cemetery overlooks the stretch of beach on which John died on D-day. A few hundred yards away is a ruined 88-mm gun which could have fired the shell that killed him.

Walking in a heavy rain across a rutted beach I found a young radioman who told me about it.

Shell Hits Foxhole

"Murph landed an hour after H-hour," he said. "He was carrying a tommygun. He was a radioman second class and in charge of communications for his platoon. He soon had the ship-to-shore radio working so the officers could direct the movement of troops and materials ashore.

"He had to keep moving because he was on the hottest section of the beach. It was almost covered with German 88 shells, mortars and machinegun fire.

"About 7 o'clock that night Murph and his buddy, Radioman 3rd class Lawrence Meredith, from Oklahoma City, and two other men were in a foxhole. An 88 shell landed right in the foxhole. Murph and Meredeth were killed instantly. One of the other fellows was wounded, but the fourth man wasn't even hurt."

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