Service Number: 354941
Birth and Early Life:
Malcolm Hogan was born in Boston on May 8, 1920, to John and Marian Hogan of 14 West Tremlett Street, Dorset. Of his three siblings, he was closest to his twin brother Gerald; the two completed high school together and even worked the same job as grocery clerks at a First National store in Dorset. The brothers both decided to join the service after Pearl Harbor, but while Gerald chose the Army, Malcolm went to the Marine Corps.
Enlistment and Boot Camp:
Hogan enlisted on January 13, 1942. He was sent to Parris Island for training.
Private Hogan was quickly recruited for Major Merritt “Red Mike” Edson’s First Raider Battalion. In April 1942, he traveled to Samoa for advanced training with Captain Kenneth Bailey’s Company C.
Hogan saw action in the Tulagi landing on August 7, 1942, and again near Tasimboko, Guadalcanal, a month later. From there his company moved inland and took up defensive positions on a ridge near Henderson Field. Two days of skirmishing, including a narrow escape for Hogan’s company from encircling Japanese, set the stage for the battle of Bloody Ridge, where Edson’s Raiders would become famous.
Date Of Loss:
As the first wave of the Japanese attack surged forward against the Marines on Bloody Ridge, Lieutenant “Black Jack” Salmon’s platoon was hit and overwhelmed. Salmon managed to extract a few of his men, but appeared “visibly shaken, in bad shape, and deeply concerned about several of his men who had been cut off during the withdrawal.” (1)
Private Hogan may have been one of the trapped men. He would have had to navigate a fallen tree across a stream in the dark, evade the Japanese, and avoid being shot by friendly fire as he neared Marine lines in the dark. What fate befell him is unknown; he was never seen again.
Several days after the battle, Lieutenant Salmon led Charlie Company back over the field. Their objective was the Japanese jump-off point, but first they had to cross the position they’d abandoned on September 13. A grisly sight awaited them.
We found three badly decomposed bodies in the near vicinity of Hogan’s position, and although we were positive that the bodies were those of Marines, positive personal identification was impossible. (2)
Next Of Kin:
Mother, Mrs. Marian Hogan
Status Of Remains:
Manila American Cemetery and Memorial, Philippines.
Massachusetts National Cemetery, Bourne, MA.
(1) Alexander, Joseph H. Edson’s Raiders: The 1st Marine Raider Battalion in World War II. page 152
(2) John Pomeroy Salmon, quoted in Alexander, page 160. Alexander correctly notes that Salmon’s positivity was not enough to warrant proper identification; indeed, taken at face value, the quote seems ambiguous as to whether or not the remains were even American. Also missing from the company were PFC Salvatore Cracco, PFC Charles Roberts, PFC Francis Potter, and privates John Langdon and Paul Ratcliffe.