MSGT Biddle Izard and ENS Charles Grice to be honored at 48th Annual Memorial Ceremony

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 Master Sergeant Biddle Carrol “B.C., Jack, Izzy or Buzz” Izard Jr. was born 2 August 1920 in Coleman, Oklahoma. Master Sergeant Izard enlisted in the Navy as a Apprentice Seaman on 23 August 1941. Master Sergeant Izard is a plank owner of the USS Woodworth (DD-469) and crossed the equator on 9 October 1942 becoming a “Shellback”. Master Sergeant Izard was honorably discharged from the Navy on 27 September 1945 as a Boilermaker Second Class. 

 In August 1949, Master Sergeant Izard enlisted in the United States Army and attended Explosive Ordnance Disposal School at Aberdeen Proving Grounds, Maryland. While attending Explosive Ordnance Disposal School, Master Sergeant Izard was seriously wounded in an accident that killed PVT Harold Sloppy and PVT Charles Jones. Master Sergeant Izard graduated from  Explosive Ordnance Disposal School on 26 April 1950 as a Corporal.  He deployed to Korea with the 16th Explosive Ordnance Disposal Squad from 1 August 1951 to 11 May 1952.  In February of 1952 he was promoted to Master Sergeant. Upon his return from Korea he was sent to United States Naval School, Explosive Ordnance Disposal, Indian Head, Maryland, Special Weapons Course.  Master Sergeant Izard graduated on 23 October 1953.  He went on to serve with the 70th Ordnance Detachment (EOD) Fort Rosecrans, San Diego, California and the 551st Ordnance Detachment (EOD) Fort MacArthur, San Pedro, California. On 21 June 1957 Master Sergeant Izard graduated from NAVSCOLEOD Indian Head, Maryland.  He deployed in April of 1967 to the Republic of Vietnam. While serving in the Combined Material Exploitation Center, Master Sergeant Izard was tasked with examining, evaluating, and classifying enemy material in support of Military Assistance Command Vietnam. On 19 June 1968, Master Sergeant Izard was killed when a dud or booby-trapped RPG-2 rocket exploded.   

 Master Sergeant Izard’s awards and decorations include the Asiatic-Pacific Medal (Seven Stars), the Philippine Liberation Medal (Two Stars), Korean Service Medal, Explosive Ordnance Disposal Senior Badge, Purple Heart, Bronze Star Medal. Master Sergeant Izard was survived by his sons Buzz and Tom, daughter India, and granddaughter Barbara Ordoyne.

 

ENS Grice.jpg Ensign Charles William Grice, Sr. was born on June 12, 1918, in London Mills, Illinois.  He graduated from the Navy’s Bomb Disposal School, class #52, then took assignment to Mobile Explosives Investigation Unit Four.  On 3 May 1945, Grice mustered aboard the aircraft carrier USS Enterprise (CV-6). 

 At the time of his death, the USS Enterprise was part of Task Force 58 (TF-58) supporting landings on Okinawa as part of Operation Iceberg. At 0615 hours on 14 May, the Task Force was attacked by about 28 planes as part of the Japanese operation codenamed Kikusui. Six planes were shot down by anti-aircraft (AA) fire and 19 by the combat air patrol (CAP). At 0657 hours, one suicide kamikaze carrying a 1,100lb armor piercing bomb carefully used cloud cover and avoided 5-inch and 40-mm antiaircraft fire while approaching the carrier from her stern. Just before the Zero passed the ship’s fantail, it flipped onto its back in a snap roll.  An instant later, the kamikaze pilot steepened his plane’s dive and crashed through the carrier’s forward flight deck at frame 44 centerline. The resulting explosion blasted most of the ship’s forward elevator more than 400 feet into the air.  The USS Enterprise was put out of operation, but was able to maintain her place in the formation and fight off more attacks that day.  ENS Grice, the ships sole bomb disposal officer, was struck by a bomb fragment in the back.  He perished from his wounds, along with thirteen of his shipmates that day.  

 ENS Grice was buried at sea and was posthumously awarded the Purple Heart Medal.  He was memorialized  on the tablets of the Missing at National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific (Punchbowl National Cemetery), Honolulu, Hawaii and is survived by his son Charles Grice Jr.

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