Tec 5 Raymond M. Hill
| T/5 Raymond M. Hill was born in
March 2, 1921, to George H. Hill & Edith M.
Barlass-Hill. He and his sister spent their
early childhood in Harmony Township, Rock County,
Wisconsin, until his family moved to 123 South
Washington Street in Janesville. In 1940,
his family resided on East Town Line Road in
harmony Township, Rock County. Ray attended both
grade school and high school in Janesville.
Ray joined the Wisconsin National Guard's 32nd Tank Company which was headquartered in an armory in Janesville. He was working as a truck driver in the fall of 1940, when his tank company was federalized. Ray traveled to Fort Knox, Kentucky, where his tank company, now A Company, 192nd Tank Battalion, was scheduled for a year of training.
After taking part in maneuvers in Louisiana in
the late summer of 1941, Ray and the other
members of the battalion learned they were being
sent overseas. Ray came home to say his
goodbyes and returned to Camp Polk, Louisiana.
The battalion traveled by train to
San Francisco. By ferry, they
were taken to Ft. McDowell on Angel
Island. On the island, they
received inoculations and
physicals. Those members of
the battalion who were found to have
treatable medical conditions
remained behind on the island.
They were scheduled to join the
battalion at a later date.
On December 8, 1941, the tanks of the 192nd were guarding the perimeter of Clark Field. The tankers had received the news of the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor. Ray and the other men noted the planes approaching the airfield. When bombs began exploding, they knew the war had come to them.
For four months Ray with his company fought a long slow withdraw into the Bataan Peninsula. On April 9, 1942, Ray became a Prisoner Of War when the defenders of Bataan were surrendered.
Ray took part in the death march and went days without food or water. He then road a train from San Fernando to Capas. There he disembarked and walked the last few miles to Camp O'Donnell.
Like so many other men, the inadequate diet and lack of medicine took its toll on Ray. When a new prison camp was opened at Cabanatuan, Ray remained behind at Camp O'Donnell. The reason for this was he was considered to be too ill to be moved. This would seem to indicate that Ray was already considered extremely ill.
On Wednesday, July 22, 1942, T/5 Raymond M. Hill died of dysentery, malaria, and starvation at Camp O'Donnell. He was 21 years old. He was buried in the camp cemetery in Section P, Row 3, Grave 7. After the war, his remains were moved to the American Military Cemetery outside Manila.