83.9 F
Charlotte Amalie
Thursday, June 13, 2024
HomeNewsArchivesRemembrance of the Territory's Role in World War Two

Remembrance of the Territory's Role in World War Two

Dear Editor,
While ceremonies are appropriately being conducted here in the U. S. and in Europe comemorating the 60th anniversary of the WW II and in particular the Allied storming of the beach in Normandy, France, the thought came to mind that young Virgin Islanders are not aware about the part by the Virgin Islanders played during the war. Since the Virgin Islands was as it is now, a U. S. territory, the islands role was prominent. First, a group of Virgin Islands petitioned the War Department to allow Virgin Islanders to become subject to the draft and that was accomplished. They were patriotic and wanted to make a contribution to the war effort.
The Department of the Navy practically took over St. Thomas for Naval Operations. The current Cyril E. King airport was a Marine Corps and Naval Air Station; Water Islands was a munition testing and development station. The University of the Virgin Islands now occupies the officer quarters for the Navy and Marine Corps. The Bourne Field housing which is now operated by the Port Authority housed military personnel. Sub Base was in fact a submarine base and its units patrolled the Atlantic and Caribbean Oceans. The Carib Beach Hotel was the Sick Bay or hospital for the Atlantic Theater of Operations. The land at Mandela Circle was known as Camp Harwood, and housed military personnel who were concerned with security for the island. Crown Mountain was the site of a radio tower for transmitting messages.
Eric E. Dawson
Fairfax, Virginia

Editor's note: We welcome and encourage readers to keep the dialogue going by responding to Source commentary. Letters should be e-mailed with name and place of residence to source@viaccess.net.

Publisher's note : Like the St. John Source now? Find out how you can love us twice as much — and show your support for the islands' free and independent news voice … click here.

Print Friendly, PDF & Email
Keeping our community informed is our top priority.
If you have a news tip to share, please call or text us at 340-228-8784.

Support local + independent journalism in the U.S. Virgin Islands

Unlike many news organizations, we haven't put up a paywall – we want to keep our journalism as accessible as we can. Our independent journalism costs time, money and hard work to keep you informed, but we do it because we believe that it matters. We know that informed communities are empowered ones. If you appreciate our reporting and want to help make our future more secure, please consider donating.