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US Meet the Marine the world just learned helped raise the flag at Iwo Jima in World War II

01:25  23 october  2019
01:25  23 october  2019 Source:   usatoday.com

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Raising the Flag on Iwo Jima is an iconic photograph taken by Joe Rosenthal on February 23, 1945 which depicts six United States Marines raising a U.S. flag atop Mount Suribachi during the Battle of

Last week, the world learned that one of the Marines in that iconic image was an Iowan: Cpl. Harold "Pie" Keller of Brooklyn, Iowa. He rarely talked about the war at all." 'He didn't tell us he helped raise the flag ': Marine Corps says another WWII hero misidentified in iconic, flag - raising Iwo Jima photo.

DES MOINES - Six Marines raised the U.S. flag atop Mount Suribachi to let enemies and allies alike know the island of Iwo Jima was won on Feb. 23, 1945.

Photographer Joe Rosenthal captured the image of the men raising the flagpole with the wind whipping the Stars and Stripes at its peak after a five-week battle for the island between U.S. and Japanese forces for the island in the Pacific theater of World War II.

The photograph became one of the most famous of the war, a symbol of the U.S. armed forces' against-all-odds mentality.

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  Marines correct 74-year-old Iwo Jima error Historians determined that Cpl. Harold 'Pie' Keller was one of the six men who raised the flag.The Marine Corps admitted on Wednesday that for 74 years, it had misidentified one of the six fighting men who appeared in the Pulitzer Prize-winning photograph by Associated Press photographer Joe Rosenthal.

Iwo Jima is an island south of Tokyo. The United States lau After more than a month of fighting, the United States was victorious - giving rise to well-known photo by photographer Joe Rosenthal of U.S. Marines raising the United States flag over Mount Suribachi.

The Marine Corps acknowledged Thursday it had misidentified one of the six men in the iconic 1945 World War II photo of the flag - raising on Iwo Jima .

Last week, the world learned that one of the Marines in that iconic image was an Iowan: Cpl. Harold "Pie" Keller of Brooklyn, Iowa.

"I was shocked when they contacted me to tell me one of those Marines was my dad," said Kay Maurer, one of Keller's three children, who lives in Clarence. "I knew my dad was there, but he never said anything about being in that picture. He rarely talked about the war at all."

a group of people sitting on the ground © Provided by USA TODAY, a division of Gannett Satellite Information Network, Inc.

'He didn't tell us he helped raise the flag': Marine Corps says another WWII hero misidentified in iconic, flag-raising Iwo Jima photo

A correction 74 years in the making

For 74 years, Keller had been misidentified as Cpl. Rene Gagon in the photograph until the Marines announced the correction earlier this month.

Another Iwo Jima flag-raiser was mis-ID’d, Marine Corps confirms: report

  Another Iwo Jima flag-raiser was mis-ID’d, Marine Corps confirms: report The U.S. Marine Corps admits it has long misidentified one of the service members who took part in the Iwo Jima flag-raising – three years after admitting a similar error. require(["medianetNativeAdOnArticle"], function (medianetNativeAdOnArticle) { medianetNativeAdOnArticle.getMedianetNativeAds(true); }); MARINE CORPORAL, 23, HIT AND KILLED AFTER STOPPING TO HELP SOMEONE IN CAR CRASH IN SC, OFFICIALS SAYAccording to NBC News, a team of historians recently determined that one of the Marines in the photo was Cpl. Harold “Pie” Keller, not Pfc. Rene Gagnon, as had long been believed.

Learn more. You're viewing YouTube in Russian. You can change this preference below. Опубликовано: 12 дек. 2011 г. Associated Press photographer Joe Rosenthal (1911-2006) took this photograph of U.S. Marines raising the flag on Iwo Jima during World War II .

This "United News" Newsreels' historical footage produced by the U.S. Office of War Information / Overseas Operations Branch shows World War II scenes of

Amateur historian Brent Westemeyer, a Johnston man who works for Wells Fargo, worked with Marine archivists and others to identify the error.

a group of people sitting on the ground: Former Marine Cpl. Harold © Register File Photo Former Marine Cpl. Harold "Pie" Keller poses with his family in 1950. The Marines revealed Keller was one of six Marines depicted in the famous photo of raising a flag on Iwo Jima, correcting a 74-year-old error.

"The Marines really dug into their archives and looked at some images that have never been published," Westemeyer said. "We matched the creases in the fabric on his helmet, how many grenades he was carrying, his bandiliers and his camouflage pattern. It took a lot of digging, but we got it right."

Keller's correction marks the third change in the official identifications of the six men who held that flag. Cpl. Harlon Block was misidentified as Sgt. Hank Hansen until 1947. Cpl. Harold Schultz was misidentified as Hospital Corpsman John "Doc" Bradley until 2016.

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The U.S. Marines Corps recently launched an investigation into claims that some of the servicemen seen raising the U.S. flag in a famous World War II photo Photographer Joe Rosenthal poses with his Pulitzer Prize-winning photograph of U.S. Marines raising the flag on Mount Suribachi, Iwo Jima .

Iwo Jima Before the Battle. According to postwar analyses, the Imperial Japanese Navy had been so crippled by earlier World War II clashes in the Pacific Just four days into the fighting, U.S. Marines captured Mount Suribachi, on Iwo Jima ’s south side, famously raising an American flag at the summit.

The other men in the photo are Pfc. Franklin Sousley, Sgt. Michael Strank and Cpl. Ira Hayes.

Block, Strank and Sousley were killed in action while fighting to hold the island.

Maurer and Westemeyer, like the Marines, are quick to note that the while the identities of the men raising the flag are historically significant, the true meaning of the photograph is shared among all the fighting forces who endured one of the bloodiest and most horrific battles of World War II.

Why they called him 'Pie' Keller

But Harold Keller is a man Iowans should know.

Keller was born in Brooklyn and, except for his war service, lived his entire life there. His father worked at a car dealership, and his mother worked at a grocery store.

Keller delivered the Register and the defunct afternoon paper, the Tribune, as a boy.

While a high school football player, Keller earned the nickname "Pie" because he ate too much pie before a game and threw up on the field in front of the crowd.

"The name stuck throughout his life," Maurer said.

Keller worked as a telephone company linesman before the Japanese attacked Pearl Harbor on Dec. 7, 1941. He enlisted Jan. 2, 1942, training at Camp Elliott in San Diego and in Honolulu.

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The Marine Corps has corrected the identify of another of the men who were photographed raising the American flag at Iwo Jima during World War II . The Marines said in a statement Thursday that after questions were raised by private historians who studied photos and films, it determined that Cpl.

The Marine Corps War Memorial, (also known as the Iwo Jima Memorial) is a famous military memorial statue just The battle took place from 19th February to 26th March 1945 on the Japanese held island of Iwo Jima , and included some of the fiercest fighting of the War in the Pacific theatre of World War II .

Keller was assigned to Carlson's Raiders, an elite amphibious Marine united named for Evans Carlson, who developed tactics that became the basis for modern U.S. special forces operations.

Growing up in combat

In less than eight months, Keller went from an 18-year-old from an Iowa town of about 1,400 to landing at Guadalcanal at the beginning of the Allied offensive in the Pacific.

The battle lasted more than six months. Some 1,600 U.S. forces were killed, 4,200 were wounded, and several thousand died from tropical diseases. 

a black and white photo of a person: Cpl. Harold Keller, right, took a furlough in 1944 to marry Ruby O'Halloran. Keller returned to combat at Iwo Jima, where he would be photographed in one of the most well-known photos of World War II. But his identity in the photo wouldn't be discovered for 74 years. © Register File Photo Cpl. Harold Keller, right, took a furlough in 1944 to marry Ruby O'Halloran. Keller returned to combat at Iwo Jima, where he would be photographed in one of the most well-known photos of World War II. But his identity in the photo wouldn't be discovered for 74 years.

Keller fought in a ground campaign at Midway Island and another in Bougainville.

At Bougainville, Keller engaged in a sniper duel with a Japanese soldier. A Japanese slot burned through Keller's right shoulder.

"He was up a tree and I was looking for him — but he saw me first," Keller told the Des Moines Tribune in 1944. "I had fired eight rounds and was firing again when he hit me. I never did see him."

Keller dropped to the ground and laid low until the fighting paused. He was out of action for some time.

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The raising of the flag at Iwo Jima inspired a nation to continue the fight and Rosenthal’s photograph still resonates with the American public today. Cookie information is stored in your browser and performs functions such as recognising you when you return to our website and helping our team to

Marines raise the flag atop Mount Suribachi on the Pacific island of Iwo Jima . In the waning months of World War II , with massive quad-engine B-29 Superfortresses regularly bombing mainland Japan, the United States decided that Iwo Jima — with its airfield — was an ideal spot for damaged bombers

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He took a furlough in 1944 and came back to marry Ruby O'Halloran, a county sales supervisor for the Register and Tribune. He was 22. She was 26. The couple exchanged vows at the Kirkwood Hotel in Hartwick.

Keller declined to talk in-depth about his war experiences in an interview with a Tribune reporter, but he offered this glimpse into his war experiences:

"You don't think about it when you're in it," Keller said. "If you did, you'd probably be put in a straitjacket before long. Some of your experiences are so fantastic that people wouldn't believe them, anyway. Usually, it sounds like a lot of baloney, although true."

Battle yielded 26 medals in 45 minutes

The worst of the war was yet to come for Keller. He landed on Iwo Jima at the base of Mount Suribachi. He was part of a 40-man platoon that earned 26 medals in 45 minutes — most of them Purple Hearts.

a group of people jumping in the air with Iwo Jima in the background: In this Feb 23, 1945 file photo, U.S. Marines of the 28th Regiment, 5th Division, raise the American flag atop Mt. Suribachi, Iwo Jima, Japan. © Joe Rosenthal, AP In this Feb 23, 1945 file photo, U.S. Marines of the 28th Regiment, 5th Division, raise the American flag atop Mt. Suribachi, Iwo Jima, Japan.

Iwo Jima was home to a pair of critical airfields. Capturing the island gave Allied forces key launching points for attacks on the main Japanese island.

But the campaign proved to be one of the fiercest and bloodiest in the Pacific Theater. Some 6,821 U.S. forces were killed and another 19,217 were wounded.

Estimates of Japanese casualties are as high as 18,400.

The battle proved especially difficult: U.S. forces gained ground during the day, but Japanese forces would escape through a network of tunnels and return to battle the same spot the following day.

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Photos: Iwo Jima battle scene. U.S. Marines take cover as a cave is blown up on Iwo Jima . Hide Caption. The memory was retold secondhand over the course of decades: James Bradley, who helped immortalize his father's legacy in print, was obviously not present at the time of the flag raising .

The Marine Corps has corrected the identity of another of the men who were photographed raising the American flag at Iwo Jima during World War II . Bradley had helped in an earlier flag - raising on Mount Suribachi, and his role took on greater significance after his son, James Bradley, wrote a

Though Rosenthal's Feb. 23, 1945, photo was emblematic of victory, it would not be until March 26 that the battle was declared won and the island safe for occupation.

The warrior comes home

Keller survived the war and returned home to his love, Ruby. The couple had three children — two boys and a girl.

Keller went back to work for the phone company for a while and then took a job at a local creamery. When the creamery closed, he worked at an electrical equipment firm.

Keller served as head of Brooklyn High School's athletic boosters, chief of the city's volunteer firefighters and was a beloved fellow about town. When the family built a new house, people from all over would stop by to help out, according to a 1950 Tribune story.

Keller died of a heart attack in 1979. He was 57.

He remained silent on his war experiences.

He rarely spoke with family about the war, and when he did, it was in general terms, talking about a buddy or a military term.

Daughter Kay tried to draw out his stories over the years, to no avail.

"The Vietnam War was on TV every night, and I would try to use that as a springboard, but he wouldn't budge," Kay Maurer said.

An author once sent Keller a tape recorder and asked him to record his memories. He would do it late at night when the kids were in bed. Young Kay would try to listen. After a while, her father would press stop on the recorder.

"He'd say, 'Katie, I know you're there. Go on to bed,'" Maurer said. "He didn't want me to hear. ... I think he just wanted to put it all behind him. I think he just wanted to be 'Pie' Keller from Brooklyn, Iowa."

Follow Daniel P. Finney on Twitter: @newsmanone 

This article originally appeared on Des Moines Register: Meet the Marine the world just learned helped raise the flag at Iwo Jima in World War II

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