U.S. War Veterans


Dan King and Ssgt Quay Terry (USMCR) met with Marine Colonel Dave Severance at his home in San Diego for an interview on his experiences as a E/2/28 (Easy Company, 2nd Battalion, 28th Marines, 5th Division) on Iwo Jima. Severance was in the 10th wave that went ashore on Feb 19, 1945 and spent an incredible 36 days on the island without being wounded. He recalled the famous flag raising, as well as his relationship with Joe Rosenthal and flag raisers Sgt. Mike Strank, PFC Rene Gagnon and Doc Jim Bradley whom Severance wrote up for a Congressional Medal of Honor for his actions in treating and protecting the wounded (it was downgraded to a Navy Cross). You can learn more about the battle for Iwo Jima in the upcoming Clint Eastwood movie "Flags of our Fathers" on which King did some work as a Japanese historical consultant, and Ssgt. Terry worked as the Assistant Military Advisor.

Dan King in the home of the late famed Japanese fighter ace Saburo Sakai. Through an introduction by Henry Sakaida (respected author of several WWII Japanese aviation books), Dan received an invitation to visit Sakai's home to learn firsthand of the pilot's experiences during the war. Sakai is credited with 63 downed enemy aircraft and was the highest scoring surviving vet until his death in 2002. Sakai's dauther married an American, and Sakai himself visited the US numerous times forming bonds with his former enemies whom he was able to meet through Henry Sakaida. Sakai's bullet damaged flight helmet is now on display at the Nimitz Museum in Fredericksburg Texas.

Goro Yamada submarine I-58

Dan King with Mr. Goro Yamada at his residence in Japan, 1994. They are holding a photo of the submarine I-58 on which Mr. Yamada served during the war. He was a Chief Petty Officer in charge of the forward torpedo room when the I-58 sank the USS Indianapolis. Dan's discussions with Mr. Yamada were printed in a 2 part article that appeared in the newsletter published by the Admiral Nimitz Museum in Fredericksburg, Texas. The Captain of the I-58 later learned that if he had sunk the Indianapolis BEFORE it delivered it's atomic related payload to Tinian, he could have delayed (if not prevented) the destruction of Hiroshima. In repentance he became a monk and dedicated himself to prayers for the dead in a temple in Kyoto.