William E. Erickson

Volcanic Storm Hits Troopship Near New Guinea
Corporal William E. Erickson, son of Mr. and Mrs. Melvin Erickson, Route 1, Rock Falls, now stationed at New Guinea, tells of hitting a volcanic storm en route from the Hawaiian Islands, where he was stationed from January 1 of this year, until the time he went to New Guinea.

He entered the service in September 1940 and received his training in Louisiana.

Corporal Erickson quotes from a newspaper published by troops in New Guinea:

“The hitherto undisclosed story of an eerie volcanic storm which trapped a big American troop ship and drove her onto a South Pacific coral reef, was learned by the Call Bulletin here today.

“Hundreds of troops aboard the transport were evacuated into Liberty ships and LCIs, without a single reported casualty, according to official accounts of the incident.

“The vessel, after more that two days aground, was backed off the [**data missing**]