Lloyd Ervin Abbott
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Parents, Ervin & Cora Abbott
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5/18/1944 – 5/28/1946
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Lloyd Abbott was born in Helena, Ohio, and raised on the family farm in the village of Burgoon.
Although he volunteered for the Marines in 1943, Abbott was apparently deferred – possibly due to his status as a farmer, a vital job during the war. However, the needs of the country changed and Abbott was inducted into the Marine Corps in May of 1944. He attended boot camp at San Diego, then trained as an anti-tank gunner at Camp Pendleton. After passing his qualifications, Private Abbott was attached to the 24th Replacement Draft.
When the Marines landed on Iwo Jima, Abbott’s unit was in reserve – they would be assigned as needed to take the place of casualties. His first few days on Iwo were probably spent assisting the overworked beachmasters and shore parties trying to organize the chaos of the beachhead; along the way, he would have seen stacks of Marine dead awaiting burial.
Abbott was one of several men from his draft assigned to the 24th Marines. On February 24, he joined Baker Company in a rest area a short distance behind the lines. Private Abbott was not the ideal Marine to join a rifle platoon mid-battle; his first battle (one of the worst the Corps ever fought) would be spent surrounded by strangers. He was barely six months into his service, and would not be able to use the anti-tank guns he had trained for. However, he fought gamely on the front lines for the rest of the battle, and was one of a very few to survive unwounded.
On April 8, 1945, a few days after returning to Maui, Lloyd Abbott said goodbye to Baker Company. He was transferred to the unit he should have joined – the regiment’s Weapons Company – where he would finally operate an anti-tank gun. Abbott was promoted to Private First Class on April 23, and spent the rest of the war training for the planned invasion of Japan.
After the Japanese surrender, Abbott spent a few months on duty with the 17th Service Battalion in Hawaii before his discharge as a corporal on May 28, 1946. He returned to the family farm in Burgoon, Ohio; he inherited the property when his father died in 1949, and remained a farmer for the rest of his life as he married and raised a family. Following his mother’s death in 1980, Abbott became intensely interested in genealogy; he later donated his work to the Rutherford B. Hayes Presidential Center.
Lloyd Abbott passed away in Sandusky, Ohio, at the age of 82. He is buried in West Union Cemetery, Gibsonburg.
All photos from the Lloyd Abbott collection were uploaded to Ohio’s Yesterdays by Nan Card.