| Joe Steele |
Relevant POD: July, 1932
|Novel or Story?:||Novel|
|Type of Appearance:||Direct|
|Military Branch:||United States Army|
Luther Magnusson was captain in the United States Army during World War II. After getting his company cut up in North Africa as a consequence of his drunkenness, Magnusson was returned to the U.S. in disgrace, and made CO of a punishment brigade in Lubbock, Texas. He still drank, however.
Mike Sullivan was under Magnusson's command. When Sullivan asked Magnusson why they hadn't seen combat yet, Magnusson suggested that the military was looking for a sufficiently hot spot to send the brigade to.
That spot finally came in November 1943, when they were sent to take Tarawa from Japan. After two days of fighting, most of the Japanese troops were dead, as were over 1,000 of the P-brigade. Magnusson and the brigade were shipped to Espiritu Santo for a refit and new troops to replace casualties. Six months later, the brigade was sent to Saipan. From there, Magnusson survived Angaur and Iwo Jima, and was on Okinawa when the war in Europe ended. He shared a bond with Mike Sullivan, one of the few men in the brigade to survive the campaign.
Magnusson received a leg wound at Okinawa, but was healed well enough to return to the brigade in time for Operation: Olympic six months later. He picked up another leg wound during the invasion of Kyushu in March, 1946, putting him out of action for what proved to be the duration of the war.