GyG'sMailbag: From Ray Jacobs re Genaust....

Joined: January 1st, 1970, 12:00 am

June 22nd, 2005, 12:27 pm #1

From: "RAYMOND JACOBS" View Contact Details
Subject: Re: great e-mail you must read
Date: Tue, 21 Jun 2005 15:43:36 -0700

Thanks John.Fascinating story.I am passing it on
to several others. Ray

From: "John Stanley"
Subject: Re: great e-mail you must read
Date: Mon, 20 Jun 2005 19:38:49 -0700

Dear Ray: I just received this wonderfully
informative E-mail from

Frank Clynes
WLNE-6 (retired)

and I wanted to send it along to you, since it
involves the William Genaust
story and related subjects. Is it possible that
the story about Genaust
being lost in a cave incident is an "island
legend"? I still hold fast to
my memories of what Bob Campbell told me back in
1966. Some things, it
seems, one never forgets. Wouldn't it be great
if the answer to this riddle
could be solved one day? And Genaust could be
laid to a peaceful rest in
every respect?
Hope you and wife are fine and enjoying
Lake Tahoe. Erica at my side,
we just returned from a ten-day pleasure cruise
to the inland passage of
Alaska, visiting Skagway among other places.
Haven't had a vacation in
almost 5 years and really found it rejuvenating
at a time when I seemed to
be lost in something, I'm not sure what. Here is
the great e-mail you must
read from Frank:

Hi John.

Most of the information I was able to gather
about Genaust came from Tedd
Thomey who had worked for the Chronicle and
later as an editor for the Long
Beach Press Telegram. He wrote "Immortal
Images," a personal history of
two photographers and the flag raising on Iwo
Jima. He reported that Bob
Campbell had been an usher in Joe Rosenthal's
wedding in San Francisco's
St. Brigid's Catholic Church.

Thomey sent me a videotape of Bill Genaust's
famous footage, including
images immediately before and after the flag
raising sequence. He also
sent me a copy of Lt. Col. Donald Dickson's hand
written letter to Bills

On Pg. 49 of his book, Tedd laid out the cave
version of how Genaust was
killed and explained there had been several
different versions. It's
unclear where Thomey had obtained his
information, as the book had no

Campbell's version makes far more sense and has
more credibility, as the
two men knew each other. It would be unlikely
that Campbell could be
mistaken under those circumstances.

It is logical to assume that his body along with
the others from the 5th
Division were returned to the States and buried
in some common Marine Corps
cemetery, near or on the grounds of Camp

I was contacted last week by Bob Bolus of
Scranton Pa., an army veteran who
had also read the Parade article. He owns a
salvage company in that city.
He is determined to personally go to Iwo Jima,
find Genaust's remains and
return them to the states. He found my name by
doing a Google search. I
am of the opinion that your version is probably
the more accurate and that
his trip would be for naught.

I am going to recommend that he contact the base
chaplain at Camp Pendleton
and ask him to check the cemetery registry at
that fort. I think that's
where Genaust will be found. It might be a
historical gesture to have
Genaust moved to Arlington and buried near the
monument that his
photographs inspired. But I suspect the Marines
of Camp Pendleton would
fight like hell to keep him where he is, next to
the men he fought and died

Sometime this summer the city of Fall River will
erect a slightly smaller
version of the Iwo Jima flag raising, next to
the Battleship Massachusetts
on the Taunton River. It was bronzed from the
first plaster cast made by
Felix DeWeldon. He apparently had intended to
make it smaller before the
present size was decided on.

There has been some speculation that the City
might make the cast available
for other communities around the USA, that wish
to create a similar

I am a retired television reporter /
videographer and became interested in
his history making footage, when I learned it
had been shot in color. A
film speed of ASA 8 is unheard of, and with a
shutter speed of 1/60 and the
relatively slow lenses of that era, he must've
been limited to shooting
only in the brightest of sunlight.

In 1985 I received a national award for footage
of a running gun battle
between police and a bank robber. It lasted all
of 7 seconds and I
thought it a shame that Genaust had not been
more widely recognized, for
doing far more than I had ever achieved.

Being constantly shot at was practically a way
of life for him, and the
Marine Corps never gave screen credit for
cinematographers. Those Bell &
Howell cameras were noisy and attracted instant
attention when they were

The Japanese described Iwo Jima and volcanic
islands like it, as unsinkable
carriers. The Corps had projected 90 to 100
percent casualties from the
5th division, resulting from the assault. I
often wondered if the men in
those units were apprised of their chances.
General Dwight D. Eisenhower
once said there was no such thing as an
impregnable fortress, if you were
willing to pay the price of taking it.

After the Parade article I received a request
from the Young Marines of
Rhode Island, to give a talk on the flag
raising and present the footage.
I did a lot of cramming on the battle, because I
was not sure what sort of
questions they might ask. However the Young
Marines turned out to be ages
six through eight, and could barely recall the
Lion King, much less the Iwo
Jima flag raising.

I will pass your information on to Bob Bolus.
1531 Birch Street, Scranton Pa. 18505.

----- Original Message -----
To: John Stanley
Sent: Thursday, May 26, 2005 4:58 PM
Subject: Re: question about book with lowery

Hi John..Two books I recommend...Shadow Of
Suribachi by Parker Albee
and Keller Freeman and Black Sand Red Blood by
Charles Tatum.

The Albee-Freeman book has many Lowery

Both may be out of print but I have found
many out of print books at


R.W. "Dick" Gaines
GnySgt USMC (Ret.)
1952 (Plt #437)--'72
GyG's Globe and Anchor! --Sites & Forums
GyG's Old Salt Marines Tavern ~Interactive~
Gunny G's Globe and Anchor Weblog