We are currently improving the navigational structure of the website. This might result in lost links. If you come across a lost link, Please let us know.

Operations Merrill’s Marauders

Page Created
July 1st, 2022
Last Updated
July 6th, 2022
United States
US Flag
Additional Information
Merrill’s Marauders
Order of Battle

Interactive Page
Marauders taking a little rest.

February 24th, 1944 – March 4th, 1944
Outflank operation to cut of retreating Japanese 18th Division. 5307th Composite Regiment. The unit performs an outflanking sweep, in support of the Chinese 22nd and 38th Division. They link up with the Chinese at Walawbum, Burma on March 4th, 1944. The two Chinese Divisions are not as well trained as the 5307th Composite Regiment. They move a slower than expected which causes most troops of the Japanese 18th Division to escape.

March 11th, 1944 – April 9th, 1944

Cutting off the Japanese supply lines and communications and harass rear areas behind the Japanese lines. 5307th Composite Regiment supported by two regiments of the Chinese 38th Division. The 1st Battalion moves eighty kilometres parallel the Kamaing Road to cut off the retreating Japanese at Shaduzap, Burma. At the same time the 2nd and 3rd Battalions. make a wider sweep to the East, before making a turn to the South of Shaduzap, Burma on March 23rd, 1944, also trying to cut off the Japanese at Inkagahtawng, Burma. Unexpectedly the Japanese counterattack the next day, forcing both battalions to withdraw along their approach route. The 2nd Battalion sets up a defence at Nhpum Ga, Burma on March 28th, 1944, while the 3rd Battalion moves North to Hsamshingyang, Burma. On March 31st, 1944, the Japanese succeed in surrounding the 2nd Battalion, which suffers heavy casualties in the proces. The 3rd Battalion moves towards the encircled battalion and attacks on April 4th, 1944. They try to lift the siege, but the meet heavy Japanese resistance. They continue to attack until the 1st Battalion arrives on April 8th, 1944. It immediately joins the attacks. The next day, patrols find out that the Japanese have retreated during the night, effectively lifting the encirclement. While 1st and 3rd Battalion clean up the area, the 2nd Battalion moves about thirty-five kilometres North of Nhpum Ga, Burma and set up Battalion Headquarters at Samlulgahtawng, Burma. From here they are ready to lend a hand to the Chinese left guarding the trail near Hsamshingyang, Burma in the event of a Japanese attack.

The Marauders lose fifty-seven killed and 302 wounded. The number evacuated to hospitals by air because of wounds or illness caused by amoebic dysentery and malaria reached a total of 379. The Japanese losses exceed four hundred, excluding any estimate of the number of Japanese buried during the 10 days the enemy controlled the area surrounding the 2nd Battalion’s perimeter.

April 28th, 1944 – August 3rd, 1944

Secure Myitkyina, Burma and its critical airfield just North of the Ledo Road. The 5307th Composite Regiment reinforced by Chinese two Chinese Regiments and Kachin Ranger units. The operation begins with different parts of the unit following different routes. During their march they meet heavy opposition. By the time they even reach Myitkyina, the original 2,830 Marauders are down to 1,310 due to battle losses, disease, exhaustion, and insufficient diet. The first assaults on Myitkyina takes place on May 17th, 1944, where they meet very heavy resistance. Two days later Brigadier General Frank Dow Merrill is evacuated due to a heart attack. Colonel John E. Mc Gammon replaces him, but is soon evacuated himself. Colonel Hunter takes over command one more time. Because of the high casualty rate the operation develops into a siege. Myitkyina does not fall until August 3rd, 1944, by which time the Marauders are devastated. By June 4th, 1944, the 5307th Composite Regiment has lost 2,394 killed, wounded, missing. The remaining Marauders are evacuated.