I started this history blog to celebrate my late father, Herbert Bingham Mead. He served in the U.S. 1st Marine Division in China 1945-1946. His wish was for me to research and publish a book on those extraordinary days when he and his comrades were stationed in Tianjin and Beijing, China. Today we salute the service and bravery of those extraordinary men -and the people of China who endured and befriended them. Semper Fi!
I am delighted to report that a story about the China Marine project will be featured in Education is Life, an annual alumni publication of the Manhattanville College School of Education, Purchase, New York. The news comes from Anita M. Nordal, assistant dean for Community Outreach.
She will be publishing a much more extensive story on the China Marines in next year's 2015 edition.
Here is the text of the 2014 story:
On his thirteenth birthday in Greenwich, Connecticut, Jeffrey Bingham Mead (MAT 1990) received a very unusual gift from his father: an Imperial Japanese samurai sword. His father, Herbert Mead who would be one of the postwar “China Marines,” retrieved it at the surrender ceremonies held in Tianjin, China, on September 9, 1945.
Mead has embarked on an independent research publishing project on the history of the post-World War II China Marines stationed with his late-father in Tianjin and Beijing. You can view some of his research findings and the history behind it all at his blog site at http://mydadtheuschinamarine.blogspot.com/
“My father never was able to return to China, although he often wanted to,” Mead said. “Dad’s final request for me was to research, write and publish a book about his years in China. It was not intended to be a military history, but rather a human, personal history about what day-to-day life was like for the American China Marines, the Chinese, Japanese nationals and everyone who survived battle.”
A story was published in August 2014 in The China Press about Mead’s China Marine history project. The story has since gone viral in China. “The Chinese really revere my father’s generation. I think Dad and the other China Marines would be touched, but they would also say that they were just doing their jobs.”
Mead also remarked about a chance meeting in Greenwich with renowned American historian David McCullough. “When I mentioned to Mr. McCullough that Dad survived the front lines of the Battle of Okinawa he said that my father was a national hero. I was very touched by those words.” That week was the last time Mead would see his father alive.
In November Mead has been invited to speak at a gathering of the Renwen Society of the China Institute in New York City. It is free and open to the public.
Jeffrey Bingham Mead lives in Honolulu, Hawaii and Greenwich, Connecticut. He was a teacher at the Hawaii campus of University of Phoenix, Hawaii Tokai International College and Kapiolani Community College. He is the Hawaii coordinator of the National Council for History Education and co-founder/president of History Education Hawaii. Mead is the president of the Hawaii-based Pacific Learning Consortium, Inc.
Retain the memory of 70 years ago in China Wish of A former US China Marine by Liming Guan, Reporter The China Press 15 E.40th St. 6F New York, NY 10016
China Press reporter Liming Guan on August 8 in New York —— 69 year anniversary of the end of World War II - 69 years ago on August 15, Japan announced its surrender. Then a large number of American participation in the war against Japan after the war and was sent to China to help the then receives the surrender of the Japanese national government and stabilize the situation in China. Jeffrey Mead (Jeffrey Bingham Mead)'s father Herbert Mead (Herbert Bingham Mead) is the year of a United States Marine Corps, where he sent troops after the Japanese surrender in Tianjin, he himself where he spent his "life in the best time."
Born in Greenwich, Connecticut, in the past many years teaching in Hawaii this month, Jeffrey returned home in Connecticut, he is determined to complete his father's one wish before his death, that is the year for those who had been stationed in China Marines out of a book, let the world know their stories, so that they no longer just a silent, black and white photographs exist in the group on. Herbert Jeffrey's father died four years ago at the age of 86 years old. After the war most of the time at Bristol-Myers Squibb Company (Bristol-Myers Squibb) in Connecticut and New Jersey branch through.
Jeffrey 8 at noon came specially from Connecticut State Manhattan, in an interview with reporters. "My father had often brought those days in China, he felt it was the best time of his life, he joined the army in 1943, were merely a child under 19 years old, just graduated from high school, he participated in the Battle of Okinawa, was front half of his comrades were sacrificed. later he went to Tianjin and Beijing, which is a novelty in the world he had never seen, the Chinese people's friendship and also let him miss, where he spent two and a half times. "
Jeffrey still remember the father had often mentioned some of the anecdotes in China. After the Japanese surrender at the time, where his father forces in Tianjin and China to accept the Japanese surrender to the army together, then the situation is still very chaotic, how to deal with those Japanese soldiers also a big problem, many Japanese soldiers and later placed in the street directing traffic; Another problem is that when the Japanese army to escape the toilet all away, so the military to Tianjin after coming from the South Pacific had to ask some of the resident air toilet.
Herbert Mead at the time of the Japanese surrender site still receives over a Japanese saber, which was part of the surrender ceremony. That was the knife he had been kept in Greenwich, Connecticut home. Jeffrey grew until after his whim one day, this brought the knife Pace University (Pace University) Westchester Angeles campus, showed a Chinese female teacher look. Female teacher who allegedly had accompanied Henry Kissinger's secret in 1971 from Pakistan to Beijing Sino-US relations in the negotiations. The female teacher was brought to see Jeffrey Japanese saber, very worried, she called several campus police, let them accompany Jeffrey taxi home, put the knife back into the home. The knife is now being donated to a local Middleton a museum.
Jeffrey also found the father had preserved some of the old photographs in China. He remembered his father on one of the photographs very mixed feelings - that is a street in Tianjin, a Chinese young man sitting in the carriage wedding photo, an American soldier standing next to greet them. "In all the haze was caused by the war, which is still full of young people's vision of life and hope, decided to hold a wedding for yourself, it is unforgettable scene."
Herbert Mead also went to Beijing to visit around in front of the Forbidden City and other attractions take pictures. "My father was there in a whispering gallery (the Temple of Heaven Park) is very interested, he felt that something really weird, how sound can pass so far?"
In addition to China's memories, Herbert Mead seems to be little mention of his family suffered during the war in Japan. Only in the last few years of life, he began referring to the year on the battlefield experienced fear. "That was the nearest place from hell." Jeffrey retains home "Greenwich Times" (Greenwich Time) on October 23, 1945 publication of his father a letter. The letter said: "I am very glad when I was in Okinawa when the war you do not know what I was doing ... I started from April 8, at the front stayed until the fighting ended (June 22) head. We have different units a month and the Army of coordination. God! my life have never been ... so fear people in front of us, fifty percent of the people will eventually sacrifice or injured, several times I have hanging by a thread so I think I can survive purely a fluke. "
Battle of Okinawa US military lost more than 12,500 soldiers, while tens of thousands of people were injured. Japanese death more than 110,000. Battle of Okinawa brutal military decision-makers aware of the day to make landing operations may have to pay the cost, historical scholars believe that this is later prompted the United States to Japan, one of the reasons for the decision to use the atomic bomb.
As a brutal war had witnessed Marines, Herbert Mead choice for all young people have the mentality to maintain tolerance and love of life in later years. Later, he told his son Jeffrey teach in Hawaii - "Take care of the class of Japanese students, their parents are also victims of their own people to impose their wars, their governments have made that decision, they had to obey. "
Jeffrey said that next year's September 9 is the 70th anniversary of the Japanese surrender in Tianjin, his father was one of the year ceremony of American Marines, several generations before the Marines in line to see his blog (mydadtheuschinamarine. blogspot.com), but also have to contact him and suggested that next year went to Tianjin to commemorate this special day. He also hoped that the future will be contacted to more embassies Marines themselves or their offspring together a book and let the world remember that history, and that the young generation. His father had also endorsed the view, "Now that some people should be more research into modern history, do not forget how we reached the peace today, not because the various interests of the immediate dispute and let the world slide into the time of war again."