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Maritime service ... Matson.
My old man was on the SS Matsonia for two weeks as the relief "sparks" (shipboard name for a radio operator) during June 1946. As you already know, passenger ships required three radio operators so as to have 24-7 coverage. The SS Matsonia had just been returned to the owners and was back on the old route between the west coast and Hawaii. They alternated the runs between the ports of Las Angeles and San Francisco. Attached is a memento postcard the old man had in his files from that trip.
 

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During the war, Allied documents refer to this matter and even mention them by the Japanese name. It is little known though by collectors. It was puzzling to the Americans when they would run into this. Grown men carrying around a doll? It was for this reason that the veteran told me about them. He could not understand why a doll would be inside a helmet. He was dead serious when telling me about it though. It was almost like he was talking to himself. A few years later, I was reading a wartime intelligence publication from JICPOA when all of a sudden it was mentioned. So the old salt knew what he was talking about after all. Voltageman7 just got more lucky than he thought. The doll is probably more uncommon than the rifle or bayonet. Looking forward to the picture of you playing with your new toy!
 
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