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Book Review: A Personal Account by Lavarre Daley

Reviewed by
Ervin Kaplan, M. D.
2nd Raider Bn. E&H Companies
Published by Pal-Mit Industries
Order from
M. J. Clark Publisher
$24.95 + $3.00 Shipping
P.O.Box 377 Erie, CO 80516
Phone (303) 828-3503  FAX (303) 828-3659

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A Nebraska country boy inspired by a former Marine and the Pearl Harbor attack, sought high adventure by enlisting in the Marine Corps and volunteering to serve with the 4th Battalion of the legendary United States Marine Raiders.  He was trained with the 4th Raiders by Colonel James Roosevelt a veteran of the 2nd Marine Raider Battalion and the Makin Island raid.  His memoirs in spectacular detail as published in this volume, are indicative of the profound impact of combat on this impressionable young volunteer.  Lavarre (Buck) Daley found his high adventure in combat operations against the Japanese enemy with the 4th Raiders, at Wickham Anchorage, Oleana Bay, Vangunu Island and at Enogai Inlet, New Georgia Island.  Following the Raider operations at Bougainville, the character of the war had changed and the Raiders were reorganized as the 4th Marines, successors to the 4th Marine Regiment destroyed by the Japanese in the Philippines.  Buck participated in further combat operations at Emirau, Guam and finally at Okinawa.

(Click here for Fourth Raider’s Chronology)

Though the book is a highly subjective as it deals with Daley’s personal experiences, he is very objective in describing them.  His performance as a combat Marine were exceptional, which was recognized by the award of the Silver Star on 28 July 1944, for action on Guam as a Staff Sergeant.  For his performance on Okinawa he received a field promotion to Second Lieutenant, a recognition of a high order of competence in combat; he was decorated with the Purple Heart for wounds sustained at Okinawa and he was further awarded two unit citations for the Guam and Okinawa operations.

This book is highly recommended to the military, historians and public alike as an excellent example of personal combat history in the Marine Corps’ World War II Pacific Operations.  It will hold your attention to the very end.