Thursday, February 20, 2014

FDR and MacArthur meet in Person - Pearl Harbor July 26 1944

At 14:25 FDR’s ship The USS Baltimore stopped momentarily while off the entrance to Pearl Harbor and took on board an official party consisting of Adm. Chester W. Nimitz, Vice Adm. R. L. Ghormley, Lt. Gen. W. R. and Richardson.

At 15:00 The USS Baltimore moored at Pier 22-B.  A space had been cleared on the dock, and behind it stood a tremendous crowd anticipating FDR’s not-so-secret appearance.  Lesser Admirals and Generals were cheered as they went aboard to greet the President. Only MacArthur was missing, having just landed, so Roosevelt sent word for the General to join him.
At 15:45, since MacArthur had still not shown, it was decided that the President would go ashore.  However, while preparations were made to leave, a terrific automobile siren was heard, and there raced onto the Dock and screeched to a halt, a motorcycle escort and one the longest open car in Honolulu.  In the front, there was a chauffeur in Khaki; in back there was one lone figure – MacArthur.  When the applause died down from the crowd and sailors on deck, the General strode up the Gangplank, stopped halfway up to acknowledge another ovation, and was soon on the deck talking to FDR.
“Hello Doug” said Roosevelt, “What are you doing with that leather jacket on - it’s damn hot today.”  MacArthur was later ribbed mercilessly by Admiral Leahy for wearing a ‘non-regulation’ jacket.
‘Well, I just landed from Australia,” he replied “It’s pretty cold up there.”
Nimitz, Richardson, MacArthur, and FDR then went to the Presidents cabin for more discussion. At 16:15, a group picture was taken and at 16:30 FDR went ashore to his quarters in Honolulu.

No comments: