Corporal John W. Adams. Marine Veteran, Pacific Campaign, WWII. Just a country boy from Arkansas who answered the call, took that oath, and then took it to the Japanese Imperial Army.
After the Imperial Japanese Navy attacked Pearl Harbor on December 7, 1941, John Adams, then age 16, lied about his age to join the Marines so he could fight those who had dared attack his country. His enlistment date was December 10, 1941, just three days after the attack on Pearl Harbor (see discharge record below). As a Marine rifleman, he fought the Japanese from island to island, across the pacific, including at Iwo Jima. We may have good men, but we never had better.
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Date of enlistment: December 10, 1941.
Now that’s what you call stepping up – but he was not alone. And neither are you.
I heard the voice of the Lord, saying, Whom shall I send, and who will go for us? Then said I, Here am I; send me. Isaiah 6:8
John Adams was my father-in-law. Once my young son, always full of questions, asked his Grandpa John “how many Japanese soldiers did you see go still in your [rifle] sights, Grandpa?” (yes, my son talks like that) Grandpa John, who usually was not at a loss for words, and never passed up an invitation to launch into a good story, just looked away for a moment, in a thousand yard stare, and then looking down at his grandson simply said “too many.” Like many WWII combat vets, he did not talk much about his service, and so, regretfully, though I knew he had served in the Pacific, I did not learn the story of his enlistment at such a young age, and how he had fought at Iwo Jima, until his funeral.
Until his death in 2006, he was a Marine and a dedicated patriot who still took his oath to defend the Constitution and the Republic it established, deadly serious. He kept his oath, and then some.
May God grant us all the courage to do likewise. Semper Fi, Marine.
Founder of Oath Keepers
In memory of that sixteen-year-old boy who went to war so long ago and saw things no sixteen year old should ever have to see, and in the hope that his service – and the sacrifices of his brothers who did not come home – was not in vain, we dedicate this website, and this song:
THE MINSTREL BOY
by Thomas Moore
The Minstrel Boy to the war is gone
In the ranks of death you will find him;
His father’s sword he hath girded on,
And his wild harp slung behind him;”
Land of Song!” said the warrior bard,
“Tho’ all the world betrays thee,
One sword, at least, thy rights shall guard,
One faithful harp shall praise thee!”
The Minstrel fell! But the foeman’s chain
Could not bring that proud soul under;
The harp he lov’d ne’er spoke again,
For he tore its chords asunder;
And said “No chains shall sully thee,
Thou soul of love and brav’ry!
Thy songs were made for the pure and free,
They shall never sound in slavery!”
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