Capuchin Fr. Mark Linenberger (1904-91) served as a military chaplain in the South Pacific during World War II, bringing consolation in many ways to the young men who were going in harm's way.
His first posting was to Manus Island off the northern coast of New Guinea, where Gen. MacArthur was making preparations for the return to the Philippines. Mark was within a few feet of MacArthur as he splashed ashore at Leyte on Oct. 20, 1944.
Mark was also just a short distance from Pulitzer-prize-winning War Correspondent Ernie Pyle when the latter was killed by enemy machine gun fire on Ie Shima on April 17, 1945.
Mark later celebrated Mass at the site. A photo of that Mass on boards thrown across two drums later appeared in Life and various other publications.
Mark celebrated Mass for the troups in many different situations, including the LSTs that brought the troops on shore in various places.
In 1979, Sr. Sion Yoko Nakagawa, a Japanese-born Franciscan Missionary of Mary visited Mark and Fr. Didacus Joseph Dunn at Atwood, Kansas, and reminisced over some of the artifacts Mark brought back from his time in the occupation of Japan.