Leatherneck Magazine, April 2007
“Colonel Dick Camp, USMC (Ret), author of the recent works Leatherneck Legends and Battleship Arizona’s Marines at War, has produced another well-documented, -researched and -compiled must-read edition.
“Superbly written and studded with newly uncovered photos, Iwo Jima Recon beckons us to join the UDT Iwo Jima reconnaissance force. It truly can be said that the horrendous battle for Iwo commenced, with vigor, on Feb. 17, two days before the first Marine landed.”
Midwest Book Review, April 2007
"Iwo Jima Recon is packed with vintage photos and moment-by-moment details of the recon actions before the invasion, and is essential for any in-depth collection including coverage of Iwo Jima events."
Before the flag could be raised, before the invasion could be staged . . . there was the Iwo Jima recon. On February 17, 1945—two days before the invasion—four U.S. Navy Underwater Demolition Teams of about a hundred men each and twenty-two Marine observers scouted the waters around Iwo Jima and went ashore to determine if the soil would support vehicles. The swimmers wore nothing more than their trunks, swim fins, goggles, and knives, along with some camouflage paint and a coat of grease to protect against the 59 degree water.
Supported by battleships Tennessee and Nevada, a cruiser, several destroyers and aircraft, and twelve Landing Craft Infantry gunboats, they approached the shore as the Japanese opened fire. Nine of the thin-skinned gunboats suffered heavy damage, one sank, and the rest survived with moderate damage. Forty-three seamen were killed and almost two hundred wounded, 40 percent of the men engaged. Of the twelve gunboat captains, nine received the Navy Cross and one the Medal of Honor. Using eyewitness accounts, after-action reports, and over one hundred photographs, Iwo Jima Recon brings to life this little-known story of courage above and beyond the call of duty.