OVERLAND PARK, Kan. -- Jerry Ingram lied about his age when he was 15 to serve in the U.S. Marine Corps during World War II.
Now 91, Ingram reflected on his role in one of the country’s most historic conflicts: the Battle of Iwo Jima.
“It’s just hell on earth. That’s all. There’s no nice way to describe people killing people,” Ingram said. “And that’s what we were doing, we had to, to take that island.”
The Battle of Iwo Jima, off the coast of Japan, began on February 19, 1945.
“We anticipated it would be through in two or three days,” Ingram said.
Instead, the savage fighting stretched to five weeks, eventually giving the Allies a crucial victory in the Pacific theater.
On Wednesday, Ingram was honored alongside fellow veterans Ed Boswell and Martin Murphy at a ceremony at Silvercrest Deer Creek in Overland Park.
While most of us have seen the iconic picture of Marines raising the flag on Mt. Suribachi, Ingram could hear it. He still hears it.
“The flag raising at Suribachi, I didn’t see it myself, but a cheer went up from the whole island when the word got out.”
Hear more from the veterans in the video player above.