December 7, 1941 brings to mind Pearl Harbor and the beginning of
World War II, but the events of that day did not end there. Japan launched a series of attacks across the Pacific Theater where American servicemen were stationed and overwhelmed these outposts. One of these Marine Corp garrison outposts was located in Tientsin, China where Robert Alexander Smith was stationed.  He lived on 112 Lawrence Street in Hackensack.  

Click here to view the Bergen Evening Record February 19, 1942 article telling of
Robert A. Smith, along with the small garrison in Tientsin, China, taken prisoner by the Japanese on December 7, 1941, according to the article, but historical records now say they surrendered the following day on December 8, 1941. 

There are 12 other men with the last name Smith on the Hackensack High School Wall Unit list, but I do not know Robert A. Smith’s relationship with any of them at this time.       

Click here to view The Bergen Evening Record article dated Monday March 9, 1942 updating information on Robert A. Smith’s imprisonment in a Japanese Prison camp
near Shanghai China.

Written by:
Bob Meli
April 10, 2016


Background image of map of China obtained from: