Iwo Jima Flag Raiser

06 Nov 1924 1
Yorktown, Texas 1
01 Mar 1945 2
Iwo Jima, Japan 3

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Personal Details

Full Name:
Harlon Henry Block 1
06 Nov 1924 1
Yorktown, Texas 1
Male 1
01 Mar 1945 2
Iwo Jima, Japan 2
Cause: Mortar Blast 2
Seventh-day Adventist 1
U.S. Marine 1
Military Awards:
American Campaign Service Medal: 1943 3
Asiatic-Pacific Campaign Service Medal: 2 Battle Stars 3
Basic Parachutist Wings: 22 May 1943 3
Presidential Unit Citation: Iwo Jima 3
Purple Heart: 01 Mar 1945 3
WWII Victory Medal: 1945 3
Lands on Green Beach during Iwo Jima invasion:
19 Feb 1945 2
Became parachute qualified:
May 1943 2
Enlisted in the Marine Corps with 12 friends:
June 1942 1
Graduated from Weslaco High School:
June 1942 2
Military Rank:
Corporal 1

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Iwo Jima Flag Raising

Iwo Jima, Japan

Four of the Flag Raisers (Bradley, Hayes, Sousley & Strank) appear with their buddies
3 images

Corporal Harlon Block served with his team to raise the American flag on Mount Suribachi during the Battle of Iwo Jima. Raised in a pacifist Seventh-day Adventist home, where killing and possessing weapons were forbidden, Iwo Jima seemed a very unlikely place for him to end up. He was born in Yorktown, Texas, in 1924, where he led his football team to the Conference Championship. Harlon volunteered for the Marine Corps and became a member of the Parachute Replacement Battallion. Later, he was assigned to the 5th Marine Division, led by Sgt. Mike Strank, and with these men, he traveled to Iwo Jima. Harlon Block was Sgt. Mike Strank’s second-in-command and took over when Mike died. His leadership position would be brief, however, as Harlon was killed by a mortar blast only hours after Strank on March 1, 1945. He was barely 21. A comrade’s son, James Bradley, later wrote, “It is doubtful that in his short life Harlon Block ever kissed a girl.” This young man came from a background that didn’t support war, but his duty to his country led him to give his life for freedom. He is buried in Harlingen, Texas, beside the Iwo Jima Monument.





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