“WWII Attu Scrapbook, by George & Johnny Villasenor”
My group was attached to Fleet Air Wing Four and supported, among others, PB Squadron 136 located on Attu. Ensign G. W. Richardson was the commanding officer of the photo lab, Fleet Air Wing Four, and received letters of commendation from PBS 136, Commanding Officer E. F. Hayes. Today Johnnie, my wife, is my commanding officer, and works with me to preserve these photos, and to scan and pass them along for others to enjoy and to appreciate what the Aleutian veteran's of WW-II endured. Some of these pictures had already been processed, and are provided as they were found. Others I took during my assignment to Attu.GeorgeeMail George at: email@example.com[Editor's Note: George Villasenor was a young lad of 16 when he joined the U. S. Navy as a Photographer’s Mate 3rd Class with an assignment to Attu, Aleutian Islands, AK. While George V. provided the “landings/invasion” photos he didn’t take them, so they have no “official” captions. We’ve tried to make educated guesses as to events being portrayed.]
#1. Initial landings at Massacre Bay beach, 11 May 1943.
#2. Landing craft heading towards Massacre Bay Beach, Attu, 11 May 1943.
#3. Offloading men and supplies onto Massacre Bay Beach, Attu. May 1943.
#4. View of Massacre Bay landings from nearby hill. May 1943.
#5. Disgorging equipment & supplies from one of the landing craft. May 1943.
#6. Troops on the march towards Fish Hook Ridge. May 1943.
#7. Settling in for some chow. May 1943.
#8. Streams provide the only roads over which to safely traverse. Vehicles would otherwise sink into Attu’s soft muskeg.
#9. Landing forces discover Japanese midget submarines on a marine railway. May 1943.
#10. Troops looking over a captured Japanese gun emplacement. May 1943.
#11. Hiking across the muskeg. Attu, May 1943.
Originally published: 12 Apr 2001
#12. This was perhaps a Japanese shrine on Attu. May 1943.
#13. The wreckage of the village of Attu, located at Chichagof Bay. The Japanese had taken over the village as their HQ.
#14. The remains of what may have been either a cache of Japanese supplies, a mess tent, an office, or a medic’s tent.
#15. This appears to be remains of the Japanese hospital on Attu, manned by Dr. Tatsuguri.
#16. Inspecting and recording the remains of a fallen Japanese soldier on Attu. There appears to be a fencing mask and attire in the rubble.
THE LANDINGS AND INVASION OF ATTU, MAY 1943
#1. OS2U Observation aircraft, attached to either the USS Trenton or Concord, US Navel Task Force 92, flying over Attu’s Alexai Point. Shemya is seen on the very righthand side.
#2. Attu’s photo lab building on the left. Quonset hut in front was my quarters, 2 huts further back housed remaining photographers. Terrible Mountain in the background with the North South runway in front of it.