Phase II 1944
On July 28th the airstrip on Orote Peninsula was secured, and by July 30th, Apra Harbor was secure and ready to accept vessels. Phase I to secure the FBL, was complete. It had been a tough 10 days of struggle, but for the first time the men could rest and regroup. The 3rd Marine Division sent scouts to the front to determine enemy positions and numbers. The remaining men had a first chance, since W-Day to wash, shave and get into fresh clothes. These two days also were spent completing unloading operations. Once complete, the riflemen of the 3rd Marines were able to return to their units and the 19th Marines assumed control of the shore party activities.
On July 31, one of the patrol units liberated the first large group of Chamorros and was then told of another concentration camp near As Inan (east coast of Guam). The patrol unit reached that compound and freed 2,000 Chamorros. Soldiers willingly gave their rations and cigarettes to the undernourished men and women who were almost overcome with joy at once again seeing Americans. Men of the 77th Division soon forgot the long, tiresome cross-island march. The full realization of the expression: "liberation of enslaved peoples", came to the troops (Lodge 1998:130).
Last Updated: 03-may-2004