Gen. Haynes served his country over three decades, in three wars and in peacetime. But the defining event of General Haynes’ long and distinguished Marine Corps career was the Battle of Iwo Jima. Then a young captain on the Operations Staff serving as Tactical Control Officer of the 28th Marines’ landing team, he was intimately involved in planning and coordinating all phases of the team’s fight on Iwo Jima.
Later in life, Gen Haynes wrote The Lions of Iwo Jima, an account of the Regiment’s 36-day ordeal on Iwo, including the capture of Mt Suribachi. It is a personal and riveting account of Combat Team 28, 5th Marine Division, during the savage battle.
Above, Left: Col Warren Wiedhahn, (L.) Yoshitaka Shindo (C) Gen Haynes (R.) at the 2009 ROH.
Below, Right:Captain Fred Haynes takes a smoke break on March 2, his darkest day on Iwo Jima
On numerous occasions since the inception of the Reunion of Honor (ROH), held jointly by Japan and the U.S., Gen. Haynes joined other veterans on the island to honor the men who fought and died there. He realized the special importance of the ROH ceremonies to the relationship of the two countries. He was proud of the fact that this terrible war had lead to real peace and cooperation between the US and Japan.
Gen. Haynes was a leading advocate for establishing Iwo Jima as a Peace Shrine.
According to Bonnie Haynes, “Fred related to Gen Kuribayashi’s grandson, Yoshitaka Shindo, as an almost surrogate grandchild. And Fred, for Shindo-san, was a look at a grandfather he had never met, yet heard about all of the time.”
After his death, according to his wishes, his wife Bonnie Haynes took the ashes of Gen. Haynes back to Iwo Jima to be spread on the black sands of the landing beaches “to mix with the blood of the Marines who died there.”