Freedom Fighters: Clinton Culpepper - KLTV.com - Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville |ETX News

Freedom Fighters: Clinton Culpepper

(Source: Clinton Culpepper) (Source: Clinton Culpepper)
(Source: KLTV News staff) (Source: KLTV News staff)
(Source: Clinton Culpepper) (Source: Clinton Culpepper)
(Source: Clinton Culpepper) (Source: Clinton Culpepper)
(Source: Clinton Culpepper) (Source: Clinton Culpepper)
(KLTV) -

Clinton Culpepper was 19 when he joined the Navy in October of 1943.

Assigned to the amphibious ship, the USS Crescent City, Culpepper soon found out what war was all about during the invasion of Guam in July of 1944..
There were 30 landing crafts aboard the Crescent, carrying soldiers and supplies to the Guam beaches, as Japanese guns fired at them constantly. Culpepper stayed at Guam three days before his ship returned to Guadalcanal to load up for the next invasion at Pelili.

Ten days of carrying soldiers and supplies to the Pelilu beaches and and bringing the wounded and dead back to the ship.

By the time the Crescent City joined the armada of ships in the Leyte Gulf, America's navy had grown to be a dominant force in the Pacific..
It was there that Culpepper's ship had its first brush with Japanese suicide planes.

After the battle of Leyte Gulf, Culpepper's ship was overhauled and turned into a hospital ship

The invasion of Okinowa was the Crescent City's first use as a hospital ship, but that didn't protect it  from  the Japanese suicide planes. Luckily Culpepper's ship was never hit.

After the Japanese surrender, the Crescent City was turned back into a "magic carpet" ship, transporting Chinese citizens from Hong Kong to north China, and carrying American soldiers back to America.

Clinton Culpepper returned home in March of 1946.  Now at the age of 91, he looks back at his service with pride, but at the horrors of war with sadness.

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