Stunning photos of the US Army during the War in the Pacific have been brought to life through vivid colorization. The breathtaking images capture the perils of war, from men being stretchered away to hospital to soldiers fighting at Okinawa.
From December 1941 to September 1945, war raged on across Asia and the Pacific. The conflict, which led to around 36 million casualties, was a turning point in World War II. The unexpected Japanese air strike on Pearl Harbor in December 1941 triggered the USA’s involvement in the Second World War.
On December 8, America declared war on Japan, along with the other Allied nations.
Royston Leonard, from Cardiff, Wales, is the man who brought these photos to life. “The Japanese code was to not surrender and to fight to the death which was their way to die in battle with honour, almost no prisoners were taken unless they were badly injured and could no longer fight,” he said. “I’ve seen a lot of photos of the European war in color but almost nothing from the Pacific War.”
1944: US soldiers of the 7th Infantry Division attacking a Japanese blockhouse on Kwajalein in the Marshall Islands. The troops began capturing the islands by landing their forces on the beaches.
U.S. Marines firing an M1919 Browning machine gun during the fighting on the island of Peleliu. These .30 caliber weapons were typically used during World War II.
March 13, 1944: An Avenger aircraft from the squadron VT-26, after engine failure and a catapult mishap on board the aircraft carrier USS Bataan CVE-29.
September 1945: Spectators from all over the world pick vantage positions on the deck of the USS Missouri, in Tokyo Bay, to watch the Japanese surrender ceremony marking the end of World War II.
February 1943: U.S. Army soldiers on Bougainville, an island in Papua New Guinea, taking cover behind an M4 Sherman tank.