SteelC

 


Pvt. Charles Harold Steel


Born: 27 June 1919 - Wilson, Oklahoma
Parents: Charles H. Steel & Eva T. Steel
    - father died - mother married Ike Smith
Home: North Rock Creek Road - McCurtain County, Oklahoma
Occupation: timber maker - lumber mill
Inducted: 
    - U. S. Army 
        - 21 March 1941 - Oklahoma City, Oklahoma
Training: 
    - Fort Knox, Kentucky
    - Camp Polk, Louisiana
Units:
    -753rd Tank Battalion
    -192nd Tank Battalion
Overseas Duty: 
    - battalion take different train routes to San Francisco, California
    - take ferry to Angel Island
        - October 25th & 26th - physicals given
            - some men released from service
            - others selected to rejoin battalion at a later date
            - replacements fill vacancies
        - Boarded: U.S.S. General H.L. Scott - Monday - 27 October 1941
        - Sailed: same day
        - Arrived: Honolulu, Hawaii - Sunday - 2 November 1941
            - arrived in the morning
            - soldiers receive leave
         - Sailed: Tuesday - 4 November 1941
         - Arrived: Guam
             - vegetables, coconuts, bananas, and water are taken aboard
         - Sailed: same day
         - Arrived: Manila, Philippine Islands - 20 November 1941
             - entered Manila Bay  - 8:00 A.M.
             - disembarked ship in afternoon
             - rode train to Fort Stotsenburg
             - 17th Ordnance unloaded tanks
Stationed: Ft. Stotsenburg
Engagements:
   - Battle of Luzon
        - 8 December 1941 - 6 January 194

            - 12:45 P.M. - 8 December 1941 - lived through Japanese attack on Clark Airfield
            - HQ Company took cover in bivouac
   - Battle of Bataan
        - 7 January 1942 - 9 April 1942
            - supplied tank crews with food, ammunition, and gasoline
Prisoner of War: 
    - 9 April 1942
        - Death March
    - Mariveles - POWs start march at southern tip of Bataan
        - POWs ran past Japanese artillery firing at Corregidor
        - Americans on Corregidor returned fire
    - San Fernando - POWs put into small wooden boxcars
        - each boxcar could hold eight horses or forty men
        - 100 POWs packed into each car
        - POWs who died remained standing
        - Capas - dead fell to floor as living left boxcars
        - POWs walked last ten miles to Camp O'Donnell
POW Camps: 
    - Philippine Islands:
        - Camp O'Donnell
            - unfinished Filipino training base
            - Japanese put camp into use as POW Camp
            - only one water spigot for entire camp
            - as many as 50 POWs died each day
            - Japanese opened new POW camp to lower death rate 
        - Cabanatuan #1
     - Japan
        - Fukuoka #17


            - POWs arrived - 10 August 1943

            - camp had a ten foot high wooden fence around it

                - three electrified wires topped the fence 

                - 50 POWs assigned to each barracks

                    - barracks 20 feet wide by 120 feet long

                    - ten rooms in a barracks

                        - four to six men assigned to each room

Hell Ship: 

  - Clyde Maru

       - Sailed: Manila - 23 July 1943

       -Arrived: Santa Cruz, Zambales, Philippines - same day

           - loaded manganese ore

           - remained in port for three days

      -  Sailed: 26 July 1943

           - 100 POWs permitted on deck at a time from 6:00 AM to

             4:00 PM

       -  Arrived: Takao, Formosa - 28 July 1943

       - Sailed: 5 August 1942 - at 8:00 AM

            - part of nine ship convoy

        - Arrived: Moji, Japan - 7 August 1943

            - POWs lined up on dock - 8 August 1943

            - marched to rail station and boarded train

                - 9:30 AM - train departed

                    - two day train trip

                - 7:30 PM - 10 August 1943 - arrived at Omuta, Kyushu

                    - POWs marched 18 miles

                       - eighteen rode truck because they could not walk

Liberated: September 1945

Discharged: 13 January 1946

Wife: Lorene

Died: 2 May 2000 - Oklahoma City, Oklahoma

Buried:

    - Sunny Lane Cemetery - Del City, Oklahoma

        -  Section:  5 


 

Return to HQ Company

 

Next