My father, Robert L. Myers, was a lieutenant in the 1184th Engineering Aviation Brigade in the South Pacific during World War II. This is what I have been able to determine about his service during the war. There is info here about where his battalion was at various points and what they were doing. If anyone can fill in the gaps, I would appreciate whatever info is available.
He graduated from the New York State Forest Ranger School in 1939 at the age of 22. He was initially drafted into the army in late 1941 or early 1942 while working with the Forest Service in Massena, NY. I have an Army ID card, dated February 4, 1942, showing him with the Saint Lawrence River District Corps of Engineers with his occupation listed as a helper in the Soils Lab. By August, 1942 he was at Fort Belvoir, Va. with the 2nd Platoon, “D” Company, 1st Battalion, E.R.T.C. He then qualified for Officer’s Candidate School. I have a picture of his class dated January, 1943, O.C.S. Company “F” 2nd Engineering School Regiment. On February 2, 1943 he was given an honorable discharge so that he could accept a commission and immediate active duty in Army of the United States.
On February 26, 1943, he was at March Field, CA with the 854th E.A.B. During January and February, 1944 he trained at the Army Air Force School of Applied Tactics in Orlando FL. I have a photograph of his graduating class with the last names of all the men in the picture. By the 5th of May, 1944 he was training at Geiger Field, Washington with the 1884th E.A.B I have a copy of the company newspaper with an article about the company’s training in the mountains of Washington State.
From there the dates get fuzzy. From an undated Commissary card I know he was at Hickam Field in Hawaii. I have captioned photos of various locations around the island. The next event I have for him was crossing the 180° Meridian aboard the LST-606 at Latitude 6°N 06’E on August 17, 1944. Their ship then crossed the equator on August 23rd at Longitude 164° 20’ E. From there he took pictures of Guadalcanal, Tulagi and Florida Island in the Solomons. Not sure if they stopped at any of them. From there, it looks like they were next at Angaur Island in the Palau Islands. It gets confusing after that because it looks like they ended up in Guam. He took a lot of pictures of construction sites but didn’t identify their location until Guam. I’m not sure if they even stopped at the first islands or why they went there. If their ultimate destination was Guam, they took a very circuitous route. The next actual date I have is January 10, 1945 showing airfield construction on Guam.
After completing the airstrip on Guam, they battalion was sent to Okinawa to assist in the invasion. I have lots of photos from there but no details as to time or activities. From other sources, I believe the 1184th and 1186th were assigned to the 7th Division under General Buckner. There are some photos of the damage caused by a typhoon in September, 1945 that hit the island after they had captured it.
My father returned to the states on the USS Admiral H.T. Mayo crossing the meridian on March 2, 1946 at 30°N. He was stationed at March Field in California and was discharged at Fort Dix, NJ. His Separation Qualification Record describes him as platoon commander in charge of construction of airfields and airfield facilities. Date of separation June 2, 1946. He was not a great story teller or talker. Growing up I knew what he did during the war and the places he went. He never talked about any fighting he did but there is an official army photograph of him sitting behind a machine gun on the back of a truck. He did have several marksmanship medals.
Robert L. Myers WWII record.docx