The following information was received from an interview with a Yapese elder regarding her memories of the three UDT men (Now called Navy SEAL's) who were captured on Yap around August 13, 1944. They were on a recon mission from the submarine, USS Burfish when capture. The men did not make it back to the submarine therefore it had to leave without them. All three men remain missing in action. More information about the men and their loss can be located at: http://www.missingaircrew.com/yap/mac/13aug1944.asp
=========== INTERVIEW ===================
At that time the Japanese had moved all the people out of the village and had a large vegetable garden there. Only 1 man was allowed to live in the village. His name was Gilmoon. One day he found a body of an american soldier and buried it to hide it from the Japanese. She said he removed the dog tags and watch and hid them. He later found the 2 other Americans hiding in the large mangrove swamp next to Peelak Channel. He tried to help them as much as he could with water and food but it was difficult because of the Japanese soldiers. Maybe they just got so bad off that they couldn't handle the swamp anymore and decided to come out and surrender. Just below where my old house is located (where there were 3 Japanese cannons) there was a large beach. At sunrise the Japanese sentry looked down and saw 2 American sailors digging for shellfish in the sand and sounded the alarm. The Japanese soldiers went down and took the 2 into custody and started the march to Amun, Gagil (HQ). From there they weretaken to Okaw, Weloy (HQ) and then sent to Palau where they were executed. They say the Japanese officer in Okaw was a US spy and told the two that he could not help them because he would blow his cover. I have no idea if this is true. There are some other discrepencies. Some accounts say all 3 sailors were captured. She told me that she only saw 2 being taken to Amun. One of them was very tall well over 6 ft. and the soldiers were afraid of him. He would stop and pick oranges from the trees overhanging the road and when the soldiers would prod him with their bayonets, he would turn and move towards them in a threatening way and they would run back. I will try to fill in some this later but this is the gist of what she told me.
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