Richard Tregaskis: Reporting under Fire from Guadalcanal to Vietnam

Historian Ray Boomhower, one of our most popular guests, tells us the story of war correspondent Richard Tregaskis, who put his life on the line many times to bring Americans the stories of World War II, Korea, and Vietnam. Listen and learn how important war correspondents are to our history! Episode #429

Buzzkill Bookshelf

Ray E. Boomhower, Richard Tregaskis: Reporting under Fire from Guadalcanal to Vietnam

In the late summer of 1942, more than ten thousand members of the First Marine Division held a tenuous toehold on the Pacific island of Guadalcanal. As American marines battled Japanese forces for control of the island, they were joined by war correspondent Richard Tregaskis. Tregaskis was one of only two civilian reporters to land and stay with the marines, and in his notebook he captured the daily and nightly terrors faced by American forces in one of World War II’s most legendary battles–and it served as the premise for his bestselling book, Guadalcanal Diary.

One of the most distinguished combat reporters to cover World War II, Tregaskis later reported on Cold War conflicts in Korea and Vietnam. In 1964 the Overseas Press Club recognized his first-person reporting under hazardous circumstances by awarding him its George Polk Award for his book Vietnam Diary. Boomhower’s riveting book is the first to tell Tregaskis’s gripping life story, concentrating on his intrepid reporting experiences during World War II and his fascination with war and its effect on the men who fought it.

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