Jack W. Rush (1944/02/20)
Sergeant Jack Rush was on hand at Eniwetok for a different kind of blast.
Jack W. Rush was born in California on October 28, 1922, to Charles and Ethel Rush. Jack and his brothers Charles and Robert were raised in Soquel and attended the local grammar school. About 1939 he enrolled in Santa Cruz High School and specified trade and industrial printing as his specific areas of interest.
On April 17, 1941, Jack Rush enlisted in the US Army in San Francisco and was assigned to the infantry. He was sent to Hawaii and was in training at Schofield Barracks when the Japanese attacked on December 7, 1941. In June 1942, Rush was promoted to sergeant and assigned to the Christmas Islands where he remained for the next ten months.
Jack Rush returned to Hawaii in August 1943 to enter a specialized machine gun training program. In January 1944, he was promoted to staff sergeant and assigned to the 106th Infantry Regiment of the 27th Infantry Division. Sergeant Rush was with that unit in their invasion of Eniwetok Island in the Marshall Island chain in February 1944.
“Captured documents suggested that the defences on Eniwetok Island would be light, and accordingly there was only a short bombardment on 19 February before the 106th Infantry Regiment went ashore. This was a mistake: the Japanese soldiers had strong positions and the Americans were stopped by heavy automatic fire. The island was not secured until 21 February. 37 Americans were killed; more than 800 Japanese defenders died.”
Sergeant Jack W. Rush was one of those thirty-seven Americans killed in action during the invasion. His body was initially buried on the island but was returned to California to be buried in the Golden Gate National Cemetery in San Bruno in1949.
(NARA2; USDVA; WIKI, Eniwetok; SCHSC Pg. 17, SCSn March 16, 1944 1:5, SCR March 24, 1944 -1)