Gorden_K

 


Pfc. Kenneth R. Gorden


Born: 10 December 1914 - Minnesota

Parents: Michael Gorden & Mary Johnson-Gorden

Siblings: 6 brothers, 3 sisters

    Note: Brother, Ernest, was also a member of A Company

Home: Lake Edwards Township, Crow Wing County, Minnesota

Occupation: section hand - railroad

Enlisted: Minnesota National Guard

Inducted: 

    - U. S. Army

        - 10 February 1941 - Brainerd, Minnesota

Training: 

    - Fort Lewis, Washington

        - gunner/assistant tank driver

Unit: 

    - 194th Tank Battalion

Overseas Duty: 

    - Ship: U.S.S. President Coolidge
        - Boarded: Monday - 8 September 1941 - 3:00 P.M.
        - Sailed: 9:00 P.M. - same day
        - Arrived: Honolulu, Hawaii - Saturday - 13 September 1941 - 7:00 A.M.
        - Sailed: 5:00 P.M. - same day
        - Arrived: Manila - Friday - 26 September 1941
            - disembark ship - 3:00 P.M.
            - taken by bus to Fort Stostenburg
        - returned to Manila to help 17th Ordnance with unloading of tanks
    - Philippines
        - lived in tents until barracks completed - 15 November 1941   

Engagements: 

    - Battle of Luzon

        - 8 December 1941 - 6 January 1942 

            - tank driver 

            - member of tank crew of 2nd Lt. Albert Hook's tank

                 - tank crew members:  Bernard Fitzgerald and Jim Bogarts

                 - At Remedios on January 5th, the tank crews were awakened by

                   fire.

                 - the tankers drove off the Japanese after a two hour battle

    - Battle of Bataan

        - 7 January 1942 - 9 April 1942

Prisoner of War: 

    - 9 April 1942

        - Death March

           - started march at Mariveles at southern tip of Bataan

            - POWs ran past Japanese artillery firing on Corregidor 

            - San Fernando - POWs put into small wooden boxcars

                - boxcars could hold eight horses or forty men

                - 100 POWs put into each car - those who died remained standing

            - POWs leave boxcars at Capas - dead fall out of cars

            - POWs walk last ten miles to Camp O'Donnell 

POW Camps:

    - Philippines:

        - 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

            - assigned to Barracks #5, Group 3

            - assigned POW number 5867 

Liberated:

    - 31 January 1945 - Cabanatuan

        - U.S. Army Rangers
Promoted: Staff Sergeant

Residence: Merrifield, Minnesota

Died:

    - 4 August 1967

        - throat cancer

Buried:

    - Evergreen Cemetery - Brainerd, Minnesota

        - Block:  44   Lot:  65 


 

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