April 18

This Day in History

World War II

Apr 18, 1945:

Ernie Pyle killed at Okinawa

On this day in 1945, Pulitzer Prize-winning war correspondent Ernie Pyle was killed by Japanese machine-gun fire on the island of Ie Shima off the coast of Okinawa. Extremely popular, especially with the average GI, whose life and death he reported on (American infantrymen braved enemy fire to recover Pyle's body), Pyle had been at the London Blitz of 1941 and saw action in North Africa, Italy, France, and the Pacific. A monument exists to him to this day on Ie Shima, describing him simply as "a buddy."

Burgess Meredith portrayed him in the 1945 film The Story of GI Joe.

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