25th INFANTRY DIVISION - Tropic Lightning

Activated 1 Oct 1941  •  Entered Combat 7 Dec 1941  •  Days of Combat 260  •  Casualties 7,012

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Commanding Generals

Maj. Gen. Mazwell Murray   (Oct 41 - May 42) 
Maj. Gen. J. Lawton Collins   (May 42 - Jan 44) 
Maj. Gen. Charles L. Mullins, Jr.   (Jan 44 - May 48)

 

Campaigns

 

Central Pacific (7 Dec 41 - 6 Dec 43)

Guadalcanal (7 Aug 42 - 21 Feb 43)

Northern Solomons (22 Feb 43 - 21 Nov 44)

Luzon (15 Dec 44 - 4 Jul 45)

 
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DIVISION CHRONICLE

After the Japanese machine-gunned Schofield Barracks, 7 December 1941, the 25th Infantry Division moved to beach positions for the defense of Honolulu and Ewa Plains. Following intensive training, the 25th began moving to Guadalcanal, 25 November 1942, to relieve Marines near Henderson Field. First elements landed near the Tenaru River, 17 December 1942, and entered combat, 10 January 1943, participating in the seizure of Kokumbona and the reduction of the Mount Austen Pocket in some of the bitterest fighting of the Pacific campaign. The threat of large enemy attacks caused a temporary withdrawal, but Division elements under XIV Corps control relieved the 147th Infantry and took over the advance on Cape Esperance. The junction of these elements with Americal Division forces near the cape, 5 February 1943, ended organized enemy resistance. A period of garrison duty followed, ending 21 July: On that date, advance elements debarked on Munda, New Georgia. The 35th Infantry, under the Northern Landing Force, took part in the capture of Vella Lavella, 15 August to 15 September 1943. Meanwhile, other elements landed on New Georgia, took Zieta, marched through jungle mud for 19 days, and captured Bairoko Harbor, winning the island. Elements cleared Arundel Island, 24 September 1943, and Kolombangara Island with its important Vila Airport, 6 October. Organized resistance on New Georgia ended, 25 August, and the Division moved to New Zealand for rest and training, last elements arriving on 5 December. The 25th was transferred to New Caledonia, 3 February-14 March 1944, for continued training. The Division landed in the San Fabian area of Luzon, 11 January 1945, to enter the struggle for the liberation of the Philippines. It drove across the Luzon Central Plain, meeting the enemy at Binalonan, 17 January. Moving through the rice paddies, the 25th occupied Umingan, Lupao, and San Jose and destroyed a great part of the Japanese armor on Luzon. On 21 February, the Division began operations in the Caraballo Mountains. It fought its way along Highway No. 5, taking Digdig, Putlan, and Kapintalan against fierce enemy counterattacks and took Balete Pass, 13 May, and opened the gateway to the Cagayan Valley, 27 May, with the capture of Santa Fe. Until 30 June, when the Division was relieved, it carried out mopping-up activities. On 1 July, the Division moved to Tarlac for training, leaving for Japan, 20 September.

Notes and sources:
Date Activated is the date the division was activated or inducted into federal service (national guard units).
Casualties are number of killed, wounded in action, captured, and missing.
The dates after the campaign name are the dates of the campaign not of the division.
The Army Almanac: A Book of Facts Concerning the Army of the United States; , U.S. Government Printing Office. Army Battle Casualties and Nonbattle Deaths in World War II, Final Report, 1 December 1941 - 31 December 1946. US Army Center of Military History at http://www.history.army.mil/ Various divisional histories