CPL Anthony George Guerriero

CPL Anthony George Guerriero

Boston, Suffolk County, Massachusetts, USA
Death 21 Nov 1943 (aged 22)
Tarawa, Gilbert Islands, Kiribati
Burial Arlington, Arlington County, Virginia, USA
Plot Section 60 | Site 11619
Memorial ID 181736906 · View Source
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Marine Corps Cpl. Anthony G. Guerriero, killed during World War II, has now been accounted for.

Marine Corps Cpl. Anthony G. Guerriero, 22, of Boston, will be buried November 14 in Arlington National Cemetery, near Washington, D.C.

Anthony was born in Boston on January 22, 1921, the 6th of 9 children blessed to the union of Dominico & Olympia (LoVuolo) Guerriero. Mr Guerriero was an Italian immigrant and shoemaker by trade; his wife a Boston native and first-generation Italian-American.

On January 23, 1940, 19-year-old Tony traveled to the Headquarters Eastern Recruiting Division 407 New Custom House in Philadelphia and enlisted in the Marine Corps. His first stop after that was the Marine Barracks Recruit Depot at Parris Island, South Carolina. As a Private, Tony went through the Sea School Detachment at Norfolk Navy Yard in Portsmouth, Virginia. He spent a the next couple of years as part of Marine Detachments on the USS Portland and aboard the USS Quincy in such places as Bahia, Brazil and Hvalfjordur, Iceland. In July of 1942, Anthony was sent through the The Training Center at Marine Barracks, Quantico in Virginia as a member of Company "C".

Eventually, Tony would ship out into Pacific Theater. With his brothers in 1st Battalion, 2nd Marine Regiment, he first saw combat in the Solomon Islands. Following the Battle of Guadalcanal, Anthony would be sent to New Zealand for some R&R and there they would prepare for their next mission.

In November 1943, Guerriero was assigned to Company B, 1st Battalion, 2nd Marines, 2nd Marine Division, which landed against stiff Japanese resistance on the small island of Betio in the Tarawa Atoll of the Gilbert Islands, in an attempt to secure the island. Over several days of intense fighting at Tarawa, approximately 1,000 Marines and Sailors were killed and more than 2,000 were wounded, but the Japanese were virtually annihilated.

It was November 21st (D+1 for the "Battle of Tarawa") when young Anthony - just 22 years old - perished.

Despite the heavy casualties suffered by U.S. forces, military success in the battle of Tarawa was a huge victory for the U.S. military because the Gilbert Islands provided the U.S. Navy Pacific Fleet a platform from which to launch assaults on the Marshall and Caroline Islands to advance their Central Pacific Campaign against Japan.

In the immediate aftermath of the fighting on Tarawa, U.S. service members who died in the battle were buried in a number of battlefield cemeteries on the island. The 604th Quartermaster Graves Registration Company conducted remains recovery operations on Betio between 1946 and 1947, but Guerriero’s remains were not identified. All of the remains found on Tarawa were sent to the Schofield Barracks Central Identification Laboratory for identification in 1947. By 1949, the remains that had not been identified were interred in the National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific, known as the Punchbowl, in Honolulu.

In October 2016, DPAA disinterred Tarawa Unknown X-049 from the Punchbowl and sent the remains to the laboratory for analysis.

To identify Guerriero’s remains, scientists from DPAA and the Armed Forces Medical Examiner System used mitochondrial (mtDNA) DNA analysis, which matched his family, dental and anthropological analysis, which matched his records; as well as circumstantial evidence.

CPL Guerriero's family has chosen to have his services on November 14, 2017. He will rest eternally at Arlington National Cemetery.

DPAA is grateful to the Department of Veterans Affairs for their partnership in this mission.

Anthony's name is recorded on the Tablets of the Missing at the National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific (99614023), along with the others who are missing from World War II. A rosette will be placed next to his name to indicate he has been accounted for.

Link - DPAA: News Release (09.Nov.2017)
Link - DPAA: Recent News and Stories (14.Jul.2017)

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  • Created by: JSMorrison
  • Added: 24 Jul 2017
  • Find A Grave Memorial 181736906
  • Find A Grave, database and images (https://www.findagrave.com : accessed ), memorial page for CPL Anthony George Guerriero (22 Jan 1921–21 Nov 1943), Find A Grave Memorial no. 181736906, citing Arlington National Cemetery, Arlington, Arlington County, Virginia, USA ; Maintained by JSMorrison (contributor 47978427) .