Near Waimea in Hawaii County, Hawaii — Hawaiian Island Archipelago (Pacific Ocean)
Camp Tarawa 1943-1945
trained here to bring peace
to the Pacific
This monument honors the V Amphibious Corps (VAC), and the late Richard Smart, owner of the Parker Ranch during World War II. It also honors the residents of Kamuela and the Big Island of Hawaii, host to Soldiers, Sailors, and more than 50,000 U.S. Marines over the duration of the war years. During the months of August and September of 1943, the VAC was organized in California, and then Hawaii, to prepare for joint Army, Navy, and Marine Corps amphibious campaigns in the Pacific. By this time, plans were underway to build on Parker Ranch what was to become the largest Marine training facility in the Pacific. It would include extensive training areas, a tent city, and a dam (with reservoirs) above Kamuela. This camp, later known as Camp Tarawa, was built with the assistance of U.S. Engineers, Navy Seabees, Marines and local residents. The public school and local hotel served as an Army hospital. Residents
Following the successful invasion of Tarawa, the first components of VAC, the 2d Marine Division, arrived in early December, 1943. As the 2d Marine Division departed for Saipan in the spring of 1944, following recuperation and refitting, Camp Tarawa then hosted units of the V Amphibious Corps Artillery. Here, these units prepared to support VAC campaigns in the Pacific. During the summer of 1944, the 5th Marine Division, another component of the VAC, arrived to prepare for the assault on Iwo Jima. During September, some units of the VAC Artillery departed for the invasion of Leyte. In early 1945. following the departure of the 5th Marine Division, the remaining units of the Corp Artillery departed for Guam.
Parker Ranch and the residents of the Big Island of Hawaii contributed immeasurably to victory and peace in the Pacific. Camp Tarawa was dismantled in 1946 and 1947.
This stone honors the heroic Marines and Sailors of the 2d Marine Division, who endured the pioneering amphibious assault on Betio in the Tarawa Atoll, November 20-23, 1943. Tarawa was a savage and bloody battle that tested and shaped amphibious doctrine - doctrine that would ultimately bring victory and peace in the Pacific. Following
This stone honors the heroic Marines and Sailors of the 5th Marine Division, who trained at Camp Tarawa in preparation for the February 19, 1945 assault on the island of Iwo Jima. They arrived at the camp throughout the summer and fall of 1944. The division conducted rehearsals for the assault using the steep volcanic hills located on Parker Ranch, which simulated Iwo Jima's most significant military feature - Mt. Suribachi. By January 1945, the 5th Marine Division had departed Camp Tarawa for Iwo Jima. The defining moment of that historic 36-day battle occurred February 23rd, when
Topics. This memorial is listed in these topic lists: Forts or Castles • War, World II.
Location. 20° 0.785′ N, 155° 40.551′ W. Marker is near Waimea, Hawaii, in Hawaii County. Memorial is at the intersection of Mamalahoa Highway (Hawaii Route 190) and Pu'uopelu Road, on the right when traveling west on Mamalahoa Highway. Touch for map. Marker is in this post office area: Kamuela HI 96743, United States of America. Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 10 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. The Hawaiian Cowboys (approx. ¾ mile away); Pu'ukohola Heiau National Historic Site (approx. 9½ miles away); Pu'ukohlā Heiau (approx. 9.6 miles away); Mailekini Heiau (approx. 9.6 miles away); Pu'ukohola Heiau (approx. 9.6 miles away); Hale o Kapuni Heiau (approx. 9.6 miles away); Pelekane Camp Henry C. Drewes (approx. 9.8 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Waimea.
Credits. This page was last revised on October 15, 2020. It was originally submitted on October 11, 2017, by Barry Swackhamer of Brentwood, California. This page has been viewed 223 times since then and 22 times this year. Photos: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6. submitted on October 11, 2017, by Barry Swackhamer of Brentwood, California. 7, 8. submitted on October 12, 2017, by Barry Swackhamer of Brentwood, California.