George Calvit hit the beaches of Iwo Jima on the morning of 19 February 1945, 67 years ago today. His regiment, the 26th Marines, had been designated as the reserve unit for the 5th Marine Division for the invasion, joining the rest of the division on the island only if needed. The reserves were called in at 9:30 the first morning.
He served as the gunner on a 37mm anti-tank gun in his regiment's Heavy Weapons company. For the first few night his company was deployed at the forward perimeter of the beachhead in case the Japanese launched a night assault with tanks.
After the terrible battle that had consumed most of the day the first night was comparatively quiet. Their first day on Iwo Jima ended as they waited all night for an attack that didn't come.