In December, the 3rd Marine Division was relieved by the Army's Americal Division and 3rd Battalion left Bougainville for Guadalcanal on Christmas Day, 1943 with the rest of the division. They left behind 36 of their comrades, including Corporal John Logan Jr. and Captain Robert Turnbull (Lima Company), who were both awarded Navy Crosses during the Battle of Piva Forks. 165 other Marines from 3rd Battalion became casualties during the campaign. After Bougainville, 3rd Battalion conducted numerous training exercises on Guadalcanal from January to May 1944 in preparation for the invasion of Kavieng in April (which was cancelled) and the Marianas in June. While 3rd Marines was designated as the floating reserve for the initial invasion of Saipan, they were ultimately not landed and returned to Eniwetok for a three week stay prior to the invasion of Guam. During the interlude, the Marines of 3rd Battalion were primarily confined to their transport ship, the USS Warren.
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