William V. Wilkins

NAME
William Virgo Wilkins
NICKNAME
SERVICE NUMBER
353902
HOME OF RECORD
1133 South Westnedge Street, Kalamazoo, MI
NEXT OF KIN
Mother, Mrs. Roba J. WIlkins
DATE OF BIRTH
June 19, 1921
ENTERED SERVICE
January 12, 1942
DATE OF LOSS
December 20, 1942
REGION
Solomons
CAMPAIGN / AREA
Guadalcanal
CASUALTY TYPE
MIA / Declared Dead
December 21, 1943
UNIT
HQ/1/2nd Marines
DUTY
CIRCUMSTANCES OF LOSS
At dawn on 20 December 1942, a platoon from Company A, 2nd Marines left friendly lines for a combat patrol. They made contact that morning, moved a few hundred yards farther, and then ran into heavier resistance at around 1530 hours. Machine gun fire killed one Marine and wounded a corpsman who went to his aid.

PFC William V. Wilkins, an intelligence specialist attached to the patrol, was pinned down by a Japanese machine gun when the patrol was forced to withdraw. He was reported as missing in action, and never returned to his company. Wilkins was declared dead on 21 December 1943.

INDIVIDUAL DECORATIONS
Purple Heart
LAST KNOWN RANK
Private First Class
STATUS OF REMAINS
Missing in action.
“Last seen receiving MG fire… coordinates 68.8-198.4.”
MEMORIALS
Manila American Cemetery

Biography:
Coming soon. Contact the webmaster for information on this Marine.

Patrolling on the Canal was a nerve-racking experience. The jungle afforded the Japs perfect cover and made it impossible for the patrol to move silently enough to achieve surprise. As a result the first thing that alerted you to the presence of the enemy was the killing or wounding of one or more of your men in the point of the patrol. Then you had a helova time getting the wounded or dead out from under the muzzles of the gunners who shot them. Two of my friends… were members of a patrol that ran in to a Jap ambush manned with Nambu light machine guns. Instantly, four of the men were hit and down. When the corpsman [Anderson] went to their aid he was mortally wounded. Two of the downed Marines [Wilkins and Sauer] were dead…. The patrol’s efforts to recover the three bodies were repulsed. I was doubly chagrined at this happening because it was my platoon’s corpsman that died that day. He had been ‘borrowed’ to fill in for [another] corpsman, who was ill.

William W. Rogal (A/1/2), Guadalcanal, Tarawa and Beyond: A Mud Marine’s Memoir of the Pacific Island War.


Articles and Records:


Photo Gallery:
Coming soon.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.