Freedom Fighters: G.W. Boyd - - Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville |ETX News

Freedom Fighters: G.W. Boyd

(KLTV) -

Too often, we forget the many sacrifices our military men and women, and their families, make during wartime, whether in our war for independence or in the wars that followed.

G.H. Boyd not only faced danger overseas in World War II, he didn't see his son Gary until the boy was 18-months old.

"We were to the Navy and Marines what the Army Engineers were to the Army," he said.

G.W. Boyd became a Navy Seabee in May 1942. At the time, the Seabees were a relatively new addition to the navy, and since Boyd was a builder, it seemed a natural fit.

What didn't seem natural was leaving his wife, who was expecting their first child, when he went overseas. But it was wartime and America was at risk.

"They were hauling out big bombs before we were prepared to take them.

Boy'd first assignment was in New Caledonia, where his crew build two fighter strips and two hospitals. Because they didn't have detonators, the 800 tons of bombs were rolled into a valley and piled atop one another.
"A saboteur had put some detonators in some of those bombs and they all went up one time, just about time we had gone to bed."

The next morning, Boyd and his men were sent to the ammo site to look for the 16 marines who had been guarding the dump.There was little to find.

"We found one shoe with a foot in it an one helmet with part of a skull in it and just bits and pieces of their bodies. That was my first real experiences at war."

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