George, Alfred (Interview transcript and video), 2019


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George, Alfred (Interview transcript and video), 2019



Smither, James (Interviewer)


Alfred George was born in Muskegon Heights, Michigan, on August 9, 1925 and moved to Grand Rapids in 1954. After graduating high school, George briefly attended Michigan State University before being drafted into the Navy. George was then sent to Great Lakes, Illinois, for Navy Boot Camp where he trained in construction. He was then assigned to Navy Seabees Construction Battalion 64 and was transferred to Camp Perry, Rhode Island, where he learned to operate small Higgins landing craft and underwent some basic rifle training. After Seabee training, George was sent to San Francisco and then was shipped on a converted passenger liner to Pearl Harbor, Hawaii. He and his Battalion were stationed for a few months at Pearl Harbor in mid-1944 repairing the damages of the 1941 Japanese attack. Then, George and his Battalion were transferred to the Philippines on LSTs and were stationed on Tubabao Island. They had orders to clear the local plantation forestry in order to construct Navy personnel barracks. While stationed in the Philippines, the war ended, and George read news pamphlets about the war’s final stages as well as the Atomic Bomb. His Battalion was then split up and he was sent to the Truk Atoll, in the Caroline Islands, where he operated phone lines while the rest of his Battalion worked to reconstruct the nearby air base over a ten-month period. Eventually, George accrued enough points to leave the service. He was shipped to Hawaii and then flown back to San Francisco where he was discharged. However, he opted to remain in the Navy Reserves. When he returned to Muskegon, George went to work for his father’s moving company and eventually bought the business from him. He also got married and had a child, but was soon called back into service in 1951 after the outbreak of the Korean War. From Great Lakes, Illinois, George was transferred back to San Francisco where he was assigned to the destroyer escort DDE 577, an old destroyer from the Second World War. He was assigned to an anti-aircraft battle station aboard the ship which sailed around Hawaii and was never fully deployed to Korea. George served on the destroyer escort for a year and a half before leaving the service again. George worked for several companies before being hired into a Grand Rapids based moving company as a part of its managerial staff for twenty-eight years.




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Grand Valley State University Libraries, Special Collections & University Archives, 1 Campus Drive, Allendale, MI, 49401.


Veterans History Project (U.S.)






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George, Alfred, “George, Alfred (Interview transcript and video), 2019,” Digital Collections, accessed May 28, 2024,
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