Roy Charles Sunderland
Born: March 25th, 1924
Birthplace: Grampian, PA
Shortly before enlisting family moved to Akron, Ohio
Starting off work young he was a Automobile Serviceman with Goodyear Tire and left the company to enlist the United States Marine Corps on October 5th, 1942. Off to Parris Island Mr. Sunderland went. It says he wanted to be aerial gunner, but was given the task of being a Mortar Man NCO (614) and a FA Crew (603). After training Mr. Sunderland was assigned to the 1st Marine Raider Battalion in 1943 here he would participate in the battles of Emirau, New Georgia Island, and Guam. Once the Marine Raiders were disbanded he was transferred to 1st battalion, 4th Marines, 6th Marine Division on February 5th 1945 and then was transferred to state side April 1945 and became a Drill Instructor.
Little more saddening part about this gentlemans story. Mr. Sunderland was the youngest out of three brothers. Main reason that he was transferred state side was because his mother not only lost one of her sons; she lost two of her sons. With that the policy of Navy and Marine department allowed Mr. Sunderland to be moved state side.
2nd oldest brother- Seaman Richard Meckley US Coast Guard. He was taken prisoner by the Japanese in April 1942 with the fall of Corregidor and was later that year announced dead in December of 1942.
Oldest brother- PFC Boyd Sunderland US Marine Corps. Company B, First Battalion, Third Marines, Third Marine Division. KIA On Guam July 1944.
Note Roy and Boyd both served on Guam
I first received the 6th Marine Uniform last year and was told he was a Marine Raider. Then I ordered his file he began in the Marine Raiders and was later transferred to the 6th Marines. After he was the father of two and a grandfather of eight and a great grandfather of four. He passed away in 2017 and his stuff was separated within the family. Well again after research I was able to find a few of his family members and contact them and just asked a few questions about their father/grandfather. I usually dont contact family members but I did this time and found them. I told them what I do and what I collected and how I display them and such. After having talked to them family I was able to get the gentlemans Marine Raider Uniform. He was a private with the Marine Raiders and his name and serial number are inside the sleeve which match with his files. I am proud to had this uniform to my collection. I am getting closer and closer to me collectors goal!
The pictures below are of Mr. Sunderland and a few pictures from his file at the National Archives. and pictures of the hand written letters from his mother to the War Department asking for her son to come home.
Thank you for your service Roy Sunderland!
WWII Marine Grouping
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