Marines crouch behind the seawall on Namur, February 1 1944.
The UNIS marking on the back of the center man – 415 in a semicircle – identifies him as a member of Company D, 24th Marines.
Dog Company was the heavy weapons outfit of First Battalion, 24th Marines.
The majority of the men who made up Dog Company joined their company at Camp Lejeune in the late fall of 1942. Most of them learned to use the heavy Browning M1917 water-cooled machine gun; others trained on the 81mm mortar. They were specialists, but still front-line troops. In early 1943, they traveled to Camp Pendleton, California, where they became Company D, First Battalion, 24th Marines.
Marine heavy weapons companies did not deploy as a single unit. In training and in combat, each of the three machine gun platoons was assigned to support one of the rifle companies and was controlled by that company’s commander; the heavy mortars were deployed with Battalion HQ in order to provide fire support for the entire battalion, as D/24 did in the invasion of Namur, pictured above.
The weapons companies of the 24th Marines had a particularly brief existence. In March of 1944, the Marine Corps reorganized and eliminated the weapons companies from its infantry battalions. Companies Dog, How (2/24) and Mike (3/24) disbanded, and the Marines were reassigned among the rifle companies. Corporal Glenn Buzzard reported that the move was done with typical Marine Corps logic: the First MG Platoon went to Company A, the Second to Company B, and the Third to Company C – while the 81mm mortars and support personnel went to the Battalion Headquarters. Dog Company men fought (and in many cases, died) with the rifle companies for the rest of the war.
|Gene G. Mundy
January 1, 1943 –
April 6, 1943
|John V. Veeder
April 6, 1943 –
June 11, 1943
|William D. Masters
June 11, 1943 –
August 6, 1943
|Frank A. Martincheck
August 6, 1943 –
October 21, 1943
|George D. Webster
October 21, 1943 –
March 1, 1944
Note: This chart only shows decorations awarded for service with Company D, and is a work in progress.
Click on a name to read the citation. Posthumous awards are noted in italics.
|Navy Cross||Silver Star||Bronze Star|
|Namur||Franklin C. Robbins|