Hometown Patriot: Tom Doland - KPLC 7 News, Lake Charles, Louisiana

Hometown Patriot: Tom Doland

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Tom Doland, WWII vet and Hometown Patriot. (Source: John Bridges/KPLC) Tom Doland, WWII vet and Hometown Patriot. (Source: John Bridges/KPLC)
Tom Doland, who served aboard the battleship U.S.S. Mississippi during World War II, is this week's Hometown Patriot.

Doland is a resident of the Southwest Louisiana Veterans Home in Jennings.

He said he got a tour of the Pacific Theatre during the war.

"Iwo Jima and Korea. Everything in the Pacific -- from one end to the other," said Doland.

Doland's crew was involved in many battles during the war, but the one he remembers most took place in the Philippines. The battleship he was on was part of a fleet that intercepted a Japanese convoy trying to reinforce enemy troops. 

Nine Japanese ships were sunk in the skirmish, and Doland says he's not surprised he survived.

"Not at all. I expected to," he said.

Doland says he just missed being killed, after his battle station was hit by a Kamikaze plane. He had been ordered to go get a drink of water just before the plane hit. Eight men died in the attack.

Doland watched the signing of the of the end of the Pacific war from his aircraft carrier through a sight on his gun.

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