Charles E. Mower was born on November 29, 1924 in Chippewa Falls, Wisconsin. His enlistment record not among those preserved by the National Archives, but he clearly showed leadership once he joined the United States Army because he quickly attained the rank of Sergeant by this day seventy years ago. Mower was just 19 years old and three and a half weeks shy of his 20th birthday.
Harold Herman Moon, Jr. was born on March 15, 1921 in Albuquerque, New Mexico. He was drafted into the United States Army on August 5, 1942 at age 21 and assigned to Company G, 2nd Battalion, 34th Infantry Regiment of the 24th Infantry Division after training.
Moon was known as a troublemaker and spent time under arrest. His disciplinary problems almost got in the way of him landing with his unit on the Philippine island of Leyte in October 1944. It is well that they did not.
Francis Brown Wai was born on April 14, 1917 in Honolulu, Hawaii. His father was a Chinese immigrant and his mother a native Hawaiian. He graduated from the University of California, Los Angeles with the class of 1939 where he excelled both at academics and sports.
Wai joined the Hawaii National Guard after his UCLA graduation and was activated for federal service with the United States Army prior to the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor. He was able to break through some of the anti-Asian prejudices of the day, attended Officer Candidates’ School, and was commissioned in 1941.