Leon Hooper

Seventeen-year-old Leon Hooper arrived at Marine Barracks on Adak, Alaska in 1946 aboard the Navy Supply ship AKA 40 USS Scania and served in the Aleutians until 1952. he also served on Kodiak and at Dutch Harbor. Working as a Supply Specialist he took care of radar sites from Barter Island (Kaktovik) to Point Barrow as part of the Dew Line project.

Download a full transcript of his interview.

Leon Hooper Transcript Summary

0:00:00.8 Introduction

0:00:27.9 Mr. Hooper talks about his family

0:01:11.0 He describes his childhood years growing up in Pennsylvania

0:02:05.7 Mr. Hooper was in high school when World War II broke out

0:03:49.2 He decided to join the service because most of his family was in the military

0:04:25.2 His dad joined the Army at age 15

0:06:11.6 Mr. Hooper's extended family was in the service as well

0:07:27.6 He decided to join the Marines in 1946

0:08:24.6 The reaction his family had to him joining the Marines

0:09:10.9 The train ride to Parris Island

0:10:21.5 A typical day at Parris Island

0:11:03.0 His memories about boot camp

0:12:46.3 Specializing in motor transport after boot camp

0:13:55.3 He had many stops on the way to serve on Adak

0:15:10.7 He served as a prison guard while on his way to Adak

0:15:55.5 Mr. Hooper details the voyages of the USS Scania (AKA-40)

0:18:34.6 His plane ride to Alaska

0:19:09.3 Mr. Hooper's impressions of Alaska

0:20:12.9 Mr. Hooper's impressions of Adak specifically

0:20:57.5 He speaks highly of the commanding officer he had on Adak

0:22:39.9 He was ranked as a Corporal on Adak and left the Marine Corps as Staff Sergeant

0:23:05.0 Keeping in touch with other veterans at reunions for those who served in the Aleutian Islands

0:23:40.1 He shares a story about a Japanese prisoner of war on Attu

0:26:39.5 A typical work day in the Aleutians

0:27:28.2 Recreational activities in the Aleutians

0:28:50.5 Morale was not bad while he was in the Aleutians

0:29:41.3 He describes a night when he was on guard duty and had his weapon apart for cleaning when the Sergeant came for weapon check

0:30:52.3 The weather in the Aleutians

0:31:50.5 Wind caused planes to crash on landing occasionally

0:32:17.7 Mr. Hooper recalls men stealing food from the Navy commissary

0:33:31.6 The men would have 4th of July parades around the base on Adak

0:34:37.9 Mr. Hooper kept in contact with his family while in the Aleutians

0:36:24.4 He chose to be discharged in 1949 rather than moving his family around from base to base

0:37:21.0 He was called back to serve in the war in Korea and served until 1952

0:39:05.0 His wife was not pleased that he was called back into service

0:41:23.5 He feels that young people today should spend some time in the military

0:42:05.7 Closing remarks

End of interview at 0:42:44.7

Last updated: November 8, 2017

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