Davenport: World War II Relic Turns Up At Goodwill Store - News and Weather For The Quad Cities -

Davenport: World War II Relic Turns Up At Goodwill Store


An interesting item turned up recently at the Goodwill store in Davenport, Iowa. A Japanese battle flag captured by U.S. forces after the battle of Tarawa Island during World War II.

According to officials, the historic flag was originally listed on Goodwill's online auction website, shopgoodwill.com. When bids on the flag exceeded $4,000, Goodwill's e-commerce lead, Jason Wilcox took a closer look at the listing.

"When I discovered the item was an important part of our military history, our retail leadership team didn't feel right about selling the flag," Wilcox said.

Instead they agreed to donate the military artifact to the National WWII Museum in New Orleans, Louisiana.

The Japanese Imperial Navy raised the flag during their occupation of Tarawa, an atoll in the central Pacific Ocean. On November 20, 1943, the United States 2nd Marine Division attacked Tarawa in an effort to end the Japanese occupation of the island.

The flag donated to Goodwill has the following inscription written along the flag's border: "CAPTURED FROM JAPANESE IMPERIAL MARINES NOV. 24 1943 ON BETIO ISLE IN TARAWA OF GILBERT ISLAND. WILLIAM PO. KULBIEDA 3BN. K CO. 8 MARINES 2ND MARINE DIV."