I’ve gotten a lot of emails in the past weeks and notes from many friends, colleagues and blog readers. If you didn’t already know, Dave and I are getting married next week. It’s been a crazy couple of months with work projects, book contributions and of course wedding planning.
I’m reaching out today to ask help in finding something. It’s not often I ask for help, but this is something extraordinary and special, and in my opinion warrants tapping in to any resources possible. We’re really going to test social media with this little escapade.
As I mentioned in an old post How I Got Here, my parents are both ex-Navy Intelligence. What you probably don’t know is that my parents are just two in a long line of family military personnel. My Mom’s side of the family is saturated with Navy men and even a Purple Heart recipient. My paternal grandfather was one of the original Edson’s Raiders, and fought in the Solomon Islands and Guadalcanal.
A. J. JABBUSCH
ACTIVITY DURING WWII
MEMBER OF THE FAMED 1ST MARINE RAIDER BATTALION, EDSON’S RAIDERS SINCE FORMATION IN QUANTICO, VIRGINIA. ATTACHED TO THE 2ND MARINE DIVISION AND SAW ACTION AGAINST THE JAPANESE IN THE SOLOMON ISLANDS AND GUADALCANAL.
Read more about his WWII travels on page 18 of this edition of “The Raider Patch”
I never heard much directly from my Papa about WWII. I was too young to know to ask, and I think the experience was gruesome enough he didn’t care to volunteer information to his little blonde granddaughter. Growing up, he always put ketchup on everything…. except steaks… but aside from that, everything else got ketchup. One day I asked him why he put ketchup on eggs (a habit I had already developed from spending summers with him). He casually answered that during the war they were stranded on an island; the Naval supply ships were under fire and couldn’t reach them. Apparently all they had were some canned goods and ketchup, so he and the men ate whatever they could, appropriately slathered in ketchup to “make it palatable.” It wasn’t until many years later that I understood the gravity of that war, and those islands.
Those were rough times and almost no personal affects made it through the war. I don’t have any photos of my grandfather during his service time, and he didn’t keep any of his military paraphernalia.
Imagine my surprise when my Dad and I stumbled upon a USMC public forum where a collector had found one of my grandpa’s WWII packs. I don’t know the correct terminology, but from the collectors notes it looks like it’s a D-ring haversack.
Here’s where I’m soliciting your help. I’ve messaged the owner of the pack, explaining it’s my grandpa’s and making an offer to purchase. He’s a collector and is not keen on parting with this little gem. To him it’s special because it’s from a Marine Raider. To me, and my Dad, it’s special because it’s the ONLY item we’ve found from Papa’s Marine days.
If I can find another pack like this that belonged to a Raider, he’ll be willing to sell or trade the pack. I don’t know anything about these packs or how to look up service records. Apparently he got this one in a surplus buy from a movie house in California. It was just a lucky find!
Now the hunt is on. If you have any words of wisdom, resources, links, or can find a pack, please let me know. We’re willing to buy another pack, and even pay the collector along with the trade. I will be forever indebted to you.
I just ask that everyone be respectful and not contact the owner of the pack to try to convince him to sell it. I’ve contacted him already. He’s a collector, he got the pack fair and square, and is not under any obligation to sell it because it came from family. If we can find one to replace it, everyone will be happy!
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