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Interview on experiences in World War II

View at Kansas Memory

Creator: Drumm, Beryl Von

Date: May 22, 2006

Level of Description: Item

Material Type: Manuscripts

Call Number: World War II Oral Histories Project

Unit ID: 211329

Biographical sketch: Beryl Drumm enlisted in the Navy in January 1943 and went to Great Lakes for boot camp. He came home on a brief leave and then reported to Birmington, Washington (perhaps Bremerton or Bellingham?) for assignment as a Seaman to the U.S.S. Pennsylvania battleship, Number 28. His first battle was at Kiska in the Aleutian Islands. The U.S.S. Pennsylvania carried the Task Force Command Vice Admiral, W.C. Pye, and operated with six other battleships from its home port in San Francisco, California. Drumm describes bombardments of islands. He was set ashore in Pearl Harbor, Hawaii for training on handling small boats and was sent to Guam to serve as the pilot boat operator (delivering the harbor pilot to incoming ships and retrieving the pilot from seaward bound ships). He continued to serve as pilot boat operator in Guam for quite some time after the war ended. He was then transferred to China as skipper of a refrigerator barge and went to Sydney, Australia several times. He returned to pilot boat operator service on Guam and was also responsible for ferrying high-ranking officers from ship to shore. Drum speaks of playing end on the base's first football team and that they won championship of Guam that year. Drumm was awarded the WWII Victory medal, Good Conduct medal, American Theatre medal, Asiatic Pacific medal, Navy unit commendation medal, Philippine Liberation medal, Navy Occupation medal, and China Occupation medal for his service. His highest service rank was Boatman, Second Class. He was discharged from the Navy in January 1949 and used the G.I. Bill to attend Kansas State University.

Summary: Drumm enlisted in the Navy in 1943 and served until 1949 on the U.S.S. Pennsyvania, Task Force One. Interviewed by Marian Poe on May 22, 2006, Drumm talked about military experiences in the Second World War. The 2005 Kansas Legislature passed a bill funding the WWII Veterans Oral History grant program. This transcript is from one of the community institutions receiving grants. The transcript of the interview is presented here; the original video copy of the interview is available through the Rice County Historical Society (Lyons) and through the Kansas State Historical Society.

Space Required/Quantity: Video

Title (Main title): Interview on experiences in World War II

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019-14-03-03  DVD 

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