Sergeant Michael Strank (10 Nov 1919–1 Mar 1945) was one of the six Marines who raised the second flag on Mt. Suribachi during the Battle of Iwo Jima. He died on Iwo Jima on 1 March 1945 when his squad came under heavy fire and was hit by friendly fire by an American shell. His death made him the first—but certainly not the last—man photographed raising the flag to die in battle.
There are six Flag Raisers on the famous Iwo Jima photo. Four in the front line and two in back. The front four are (left to right) Ira Hayes, Franklin Sousley, John Bradley and Harlon Block. The back two are Michael Strank (behind Sousley) and Rene Gagnon (behind Bradley). Strank, Block and Sousley would die shortly afterwards. Click the picture to read more...
Google Search.Philip Johnston proposed the use of Navajo to the United States Marine Corps at the beginning of World War II. Johnston, a World War I veteran, was raised on the Navajo reservation as the son of a missionary to the Navajos, and was one of the few non-Navajos who spoke their language fluently. Because Navajo has a complex grammar, and was at this time an unwritten language.
Iwo Jima flag raiser John Bradley with John Wayne during the filming of Wayne’s classic war film, "The Sands of Iwo Jima." Bradley, along with Ira Hayes and Rene Gagnon, played himself. Bradley, a medic and civilian mortician, struggled with PTSD his entire adult life and rarely talked about the war after the film was released. This suffering veteran, directly linked to our country’s greatest war actors, symbolizes the void between Hollywood and the sad realities of war.