Tec 5 Raymond M. Hill
Raymond M. Hill was born in March 2, 1921, to George H. Hill & Edith M.
Barlass-Hill. He and his sister spent their early childhood in Harmony Township, Rock County, Wisconsin, until his family moved to 123 South Washington
Street in Janesville. In 1940, his family resided on East Town
Line Road in harmony Township, Rock County. Ray attended both grade school and high
school in Janesville.
Ray joined the Wisconsin National Guard's 32nd Tank Company which was headquartered in an armory in Janesville. He was working as a truck driver in the fall of 1940, when his tank company was federalized. Ray traveled to Fort Knox, Kentucky, where his tank company, now A Company, 192nd Tank Battalion, was scheduled for a year of training.
After taking part in maneuvers in Louisiana in the late summer of 1941, Ray and the other members of the battalion learned they were being sent overseas. Ray came home to say his goodbyes and returned to Camp Polk, Louisiana.
Boarding a train for San Francisco, the battalion was sent to Angel Island in San Francisco Bay. There they were given physicals to determine if they were healthy enough for duty overseas.
Arriving in the Philippine Islands on Thanksgiving Day, 1941, Ray and the other members of A Company worked to prepare their new tanks for use on maneuvers. These maneuvers never took place.
On December 8, 1941, the tanks of the 192nd were guarding the perimeter of Clark Field. The tankers had received the news of the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor. Ray and the other men noted the planes approaching the airfield. When bombs began exploding, they knew the war had come to them.
For four months Ray with his company fought a long slow withdraw into the Bataan Peninsula. On April 9, 1942, Ray became a Prisoner Of War when the defenders of Bataan were surrendered.
Ray took part in the death march and went days without food or water. He then road a train from San Fernando to Capas. There he disembarked and walked the last few miles to Camp O'Donnell.
Like so many other men, the inadequate diet and lack of medicine took its toll on Ray. When a new prison camp was opened at Cabanatuan, Ray remained behind at Camp O'Donnell. The reason for this was he was considered to be too ill to be moved. This would seem to indicate that Ray was already considered extremely ill.
On July 22, 1942, T/5 Raymond M. Hill died of dysentery, malaria, and starvation at Camp O'Donnell. He was 21 years old. After the war, his remains were moved to the American Military Cemetery outside Manila.