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James T. Forbes

James T. Forbes

Technical Third Grade (T/3), U. S. Army

8th Army -   190th ordinance battalion

August 1945 – 1947
Pacific Theatre

 
Due to the Japanese surrender on September 2, 1945, the invasion of Japan was cancelled, and the Eighth Army found itself in charge of occupying Japan peacefully. Occupation forces landed on 30 August 1945, with its headquarters in Yokohama, at that time. At the beginning of 1946, Eighth Army assumed responsibility for occupying all of Japan.
 
Jim Forbes was drafted in August 1945 and was sent to Officer Candidate School (OCS) but was not inducted due to educational requirements.  He re-enlisted into the regular Army and was sent to Fort Lewis, Washington.  He shipped out to Yokohama, Japan, several months later.  He was assigned to Company Commander, Captain Craver, who coincidentally was his initial Company Commander at OCS when he was at Fort Knox, Kentucky. 

T/3 Forbes was the Technical Advisor who reported directly to the Ordinance Battalion Commander, who reported directly to Brigadier General Urban Niblo in Yokohama, Japan.
He was in charge of a squad of 6 men who salvaged, scrapped and repaired non-amphibious large equipment from 10-ton movers and wreckers to Jeeps. Restored equipment was then sent back to the Pool for distribution.

After the war, Jim was an automobile mechanic at a repair garage on Grand River for the Packard for 15 years.  He then worked for an American Motors Jeep company as Service Manager for 22 years.  At age 52 he went back to college to earn his degree and was a Steam Engineer for Henry Ford Hospital for 15 years.   He retired at 65 years old.

Jim is a 70-year resident of Farmington.  He is proud of and thankful for his 50-year marriage to his late wife, Wilma (Daniels) Forbes and their four children: Jimmy (deceased), Gail, Beth and Brian.

At 93 years old, Jim is still an active part of the community.  He has been a member of the Groves-Walker American Legion Post 346 for 23 years. He serves as the Legion’s Post Sergeant-At-Arms and preserves order at all meetings.  He is custodian of the Colors (flags).  He posts the Colors at Half-mast in front of the Legion hall upon Executive Order direction.  Sergeant-at-Arms Forbes is also Caretaker of used flags brought by citizens of Farmington and Farmington Hills to the Legion’s white collection box.  He provides transport and coordinates the dignified retirement of each flag.

As a member of the Post Color Guard, he is seen about town in uniform at City events such as Market Opening Day on Poppy Weekend, Patriot Day, and the Wreath Laying Ceremony.  He performs the key role at the annual Flag Day ceremony at the Legion.  He frequently serves on the Burial Detail for American Legion funeral services at local funeral homes and cemeteries.  Jim was a Grand Marshall at the 2017 Memorial Day Parade. 
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