Smith, Leonard Maro
US Marine Corps, World War II Pacific
The most enduring image of World War II is the raising of the flag on the top of Mt. Suribachi. Leonard Smith, a young Marine who had fought through the invasion of Iwo Jima, was on the mountain when that flag was raised.
That wasn’t his first battle. He arrived in the Pacific area as a rifleman with the 4th Marine Division, the first division to go directly into combat from the United States. That was the battle on the twin islands of Roi-Namur in the Kwajalein Atoll of the Marshall Islands, from 1 February to 14 February 1944. From there, they continued on to fight on Saipan from 15 June to 9 July, then on Tinian from 25 July to 1 August. The battle of Iwo Jima lasted from 19 February t0 16 March, 1945.
Leonard was the first veteran interred in the Avenue of 444 Flags during the ossuary dedication on Veterans Day, November 11, 2012.