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Name: Lawrence Holmes Flynn Rank: Sergeant Service Number: 275404 Service: Company C, 1st Marine Raider Battalion (Edson’s Raiders), United States Marine Corps Awards: Silver Star with Oak Leaf Cluster Date of Birth: March 22, 1921 Place of Birth: Brockton, Plymouth County, Massachusetts Date of Enlistment: October 4, 1939 Place of Enlistment: Likely Massachusetts Address at Enlistment: Brockton, Plymouth Co., Mass. Age at Enlistment: 18 Marital Status: Single Next of Kin: Mrs. Mary M. Flynn (Mother), 52 Augustine Street, Brockton, Massachusetts Date of Death: July 9, 1943 Age: 22 Cemetery: Arlington National Cemetery, Virginia Grave: Section 34, Site 1952 Lawrence ‘Larry’ Holmes Flynn was the son of Edmund Power Flynn (1879-1948) and Mary Margaret (O'Connell) Flynn (1892-1955). His father was born in Arichat, Richmond County, Nova Scotia. His mother was born in Orange, Franklin County, Massachusetts. He had seven siblings - Mary C Flynn Fitzgerald (1914–2005), Edmund Paul Flynn (1916–2005), Frances Elizabeth Flynn Connolly (1917–1999), Raymond Charles Flynn (1919–1994), Virginia Margaret Flynn Megley (1923–2010), Robert William Flynn (1925–1972), John W “Jack” Flynn (1926-2008), and Richard Flynn (1930- 2010). Robert William Flynn served as a Corporal in the United States Marine Corps in WWII. He also had three half siblings from his father’s first wife Ida Mae Gannon Flynn (1882–1910) - Dorothy Helen Flynn Nilan (1903–1979), Albert Joseph Flynn (1907–1967) and Austin Lewis Flynn (1909–1956). His brother Albert Joseph Flynn served as a Major in the US Army and Reserves in the Second World War and the Korean War. His brother Edmond Paul Flynn served as a Colonel in the US Army, and his wife Dolores Elizabeth served a Pharmacist’s Mate in the US Navy. “As a boy, Larry loved poetry, reading, writing, and especially birds. He had a special gift and a real knack for their care. While still in High School, he operated a hospital for birds called "Augustine Aviaries and Bird Hospital". The Brockton Enterprise paper recognized him as one of the youngest bird doctors in the country. He sold bird supplies, boarded birds, and cared for and nursed sick birds back to health. He wrote a weekly column in the Brockton Enterprise called "Canary Care". He kept meticulous records on all his accounts and often received letters of thanks for his solid advice in his newspaper column and for understanding the genuine importance a pet bird could have on a person’s life. A career as a veterinarian was on the horizon, the family thought.” Upon enlistment in 1939, Lawrence joined the United States Marine Corps. He mustered with Company C, 2nd Battalion, USMCR at the Navy Yard in Boston, Mass. He was stationed at Quantico in Virginia and also at Guantanamo in Cuba (mustered there January 1941 with Company "D", Second Battalion, USMCR, Naval Station Guantanamo) prior to serving in the Pacific Theatre with the 1st Marine Raider Battalion. The US Marine Corps muster rolls detail his postings: Dec 1939 – Private, Company C, 2nd Battalion (Bn), USMCR, Navy Yard, Boston, Mass. Mar 1940 – Private, Co. D, 2nd Battalion, US Marine Corps Reserve, Navy Yard, Boston, Mass. June 1940 – Private, Co. D, 2nd Battalion, US Marine Corps Reserve, Navy Yard, Boston, Mass. . Sep 1940 – Private, Co. D, 2nd Battalion, US Marine Corps Reserve, Navy Yard, Boston, Mass. Nov 1940 – Private, Co. B, 2nd Battalion, USMC Reserve Nov 1940 – Private, Co. C, 2nd Battalion, USMC Reserve, Marine Barracks, Quantico, Virginia Dec 1940 – Private (Pte.), Co. C, 2nd Bn, USMC Reserve, Quantico, Virginia Jan 1941 – Pte, HQ & Service Co, 5th Marines, FM Bn, Fleet Marine Force (FMF), on board USS McCawley Jan 1941 – Pte., Co. D, 2nd Battalion, USMCR, Naval Station, Guantanamo Bay, Cuba Apr 1941 – Pte., Co. C, 1st Bn, 5th Marines, 1st Mar. Div, FMF, Marine Barracks, Quantico, Virginia July 1941 – PFC, Co. C, 1St Bn., 5th Marines, 1Md., FMF, aboard USS Manley, Miami, Florida Oct 1941 – PFC, Co. C, 1St Bn., 5th Marines, 1Stmardiv., FMF, Marine Barracks, Quantico, Virginia Jan 1942 – PFC, Co. C, First Separate M. Bn, FMF, Amphibious Force Atlantic Fleet, M. Barracks, Quantico, VA Apr 1942 – Corporal, First Marine Raider Battalion, in Camp at Tutuila, Samoa July 1942 – Corporal, First Marine Raider Battalion, in the Field Oct 1942 – Sergeant, First Marine Raider Battalion, in the Field The Marine Raiders were special operations forces originally established by the United States Marine Corps during WWII to conduct amphibious light infantry warfare. "Edson's" Raiders (1st Marine Raider Battalion) and "Carlson's" Raiders (2nd Marine Raider Battalion) are said to have been the first United States special operations forces to form and see combat in WWII. The 1st Raiders were known as Edson’s for their commander, Major General Merritt Austin Edson, Sr. (1897-1955). When WWII started Edson was sent as the commanding officer of the Marine Raiders and earned his 2nd Navy Cross on Tulagi. When his unit was sent to fight on Guadalcanal, Edson led his men in fighting for which he would later receive the Medal of Honor. Sergeant Flynn was killed in action at Enogai on the island of New Georgia in the Solomon Islands in the Southwest Pacific, on July 9, 1943. His actions at the Battle of Bloody Ridge on Guadalcanal in 1942 earned him his first Silver Star, and his second was awarded posthumously for his actions at Enogai, New Georgia. His first Silver Star: "Lawrence H. Flynn, sergeant, United States Marine Corps Reserve, for conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity during action against enemy Japanese forces on Guadalcanal, Solomon Islands, on the night of September 13 - 14, 1942. On the ridge 1000 yards south of Henderson Field, Sergeant Flynn, repeatedly crossing areas exposed to hostile fire, placed units in their proper sectors of the line, organized ammunition carrying parties, delivered messages and engaged in vigorous hand-to-hand combat with Japanese troops. During a momentary lull in the battle, he, with complete disregard for his own personal safety, started to search for and administer to the wounded who were lying in the exposed areas. His heroic conduct was in keeping with the highest traditions of the United States Naval Service." Second Silver Star awarded posthumously for actions in WWII: The President of the United States of America, authorized by Act of Congress July 9, 1918, takes pleasure in presenting a Bronze Oak Leaf Cluster in lieu of a Second Award of the Silver Star (Army Award) to Sergeant Lawrence H. Flynn (MCSN: 275404), United States Marine Corps, for gallantry in action while serving with Company C, First Marine Raider Battalion at Enogai, New Georgia, Solomon Islands, on 9 July 1943. While rescuing a wounded comrade who was lying helpless in the path of enemy fire, Sergeant Flynn was wounded himself. Nevertheless, he unhesitatingly assumed command when his platoon leader became a casualty and directed a brilliant attack despite his painful injuries. He was evacuated that night and died of the wounds he had ignored in a courageous, devoted pursuance of his duties (General Orders: Headquarters, U.S. Army Forces in the South Pacific Area, General Orders No. 513 from December 19, 1943; for actions July 9, 1943). On July 9, US forces began their advance to the mouth of the inlet, moving along higher ground west of the swamp they had run into the day before. In the process, they bypassed several villages, including Maranusa II, Baekineru, and Baevurana, where the Japanese had established strong defensive positions. While the soldiers held blocking positions to the south along the trial and secured Triri, the Marines launched the main assault on Enogai, beginning their approach from 07:00 hours with 3 raider companies and a 4th in reserve, supported by a heavy mortar bombardment and long range machine-gun preparatory fire prior to the attack. By 11:00 hours, the advance had reached Leland Lagoon. Around 15:00 hours, 2 Japanese machine guns opened up on the advancing Marines, prompting them to shake out with Companies A, B and C abreast and D in reserve. Attacking without indirect fire support, the Marines advanced as the Japanese reinforced Enogai. The fighting continued throughout the afternoon, with the Marines advancing cautiously over 1,800 yards (1,600 m) against stiff resistance, before the US commander decided to establish a night harbor. By this time only a small group of Japanese defenders remained, with US troops having been held up short of Enogai Point. Throughout the night, the commander, Colonel Harry B. Liversedge, made plans for an aerial resupply as his troops consumed the last of their combat rations, while the wounded—around 28 men—were treated in makeshift hospitals by doctors and corpsmen. Sergeant Lawrence Holmes Flynn was one of the wounded evacuated July 9, 1943, and died of his wounds. Sergeant Lawrence Holmes Flynn was initially interred in the Pacific Theatre of war but his family chose to repatriate his remains and he was interred at Arlington National Cemetery, in Arlington, Virginia on February 17, 1949. You can read much more about Lawrence on the family’s website at:
Lawrence Holmes Flynn
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