2nd Lt. Edwin Fitchett
US Army 165th Field Artillery Battalion
Ed Fitchett's Army Memories is available on DVD including all his WWII color 16mm films
Born in Poughkeepsie, New York. Fitchett developed an interest in photography and movie cameras at a young age. After high school, attended Cornell University enrolling during the summer of 1940. Joined ROTC (Reserve Officers Training Corps) and was assigned to the 165th Field Artillery Battalion, which had returned from Alaska.
Departed from San Francisco aboard the SS Dashing Wave to Manila and proceeded to San Jose where his unit prepared for the invasion of Japan. When Japan surrendered on August 14, 1945 and the war ended, the unit was assigned to the military police command to assist with Japanese prisoners and transfered back to Manila.
When the war ended and censorship was lifted, Fitchett asked his parents to mail his 16mm Kodak Cine movie camera to him in the Philippines. When it arrived, he began shooting color film footage.
POW Camp Commander
Fitchett was assigned as the commander of the Manila POW Camp No. 2 in Quezon City near the University of the Philippines with 1,000 Formosan and Japanese prisoners.
Exploring the Philippines
During free time, Fitchett toured many places on Luzon. He visited Manila, Bataan, Corregidor, Baguio and other places on Luzon using their L-4 artillery spotters based at Wack Wack Country Club.
Once, he visited Corregidor by boat an excursion trip sponsored by the Red Cross. Walking around the island, he visited Battery Wheeler, Battery Way, Malinta Tunnel and Mile Long Baracks and many other sites.
On one trip, he and a friend flew from Wack Wack aboard an L-4, overflying Kenyon Road and Baguio, then landed at Loakan Airfield. He stayed over overnight at the Baguio Golf Club and toured the city briefly.
Later, he volunteered to accompany a group of Japanese and Korean Prisoners Of War (POW) aboard the Liberty Ship SS John L. Sullivan, picking up a group of prisoners (including nurses, Formosians and Japanese) from Tacloban then proceeding northward to drop off a group at Takao and Pusan.
Afterwards onward to Japan arriving at Uraga to unload the remained of the prisoners. Finally, the ship docked at Yokohama for a week, explored Tokyo then returned to Manila.
Returning to the Philippines, Fitchett worked in the Manila PX. On July 4, 1946 he attended the Philippine Independence ceremony.
Afterwards, he returned home via San Francisco and remained in the Army reserves for ten years. He completed his education at Cornell and worked for his family business, Fitchett Brothers Dairy based in Poughkeepsie, NY and now lives in retirement.
Ed Fitchett's Army Memories is available for sale on DVD including all his color 16mm film footage.
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