Today in History. February 19 Assault on Iwo Jima 1945 A few interesting facts about Iwo Jima: Iwo Jima means Sulfur Island. The island is 8 square miles (4 miles wide by 2 miles long). American troops that landed at Iwo Jima were with the 3rd, 4th and 5th Marine divisions. The battle commenced on Feb. 19, 1945. The American flag was raised at Mount Suribachi on day four of a battle that lasted 36 days. A nickname was bestowed on Mount Suribachi by American troops — Meatgrinder Hill. There were more Congressional Medals of Honor bestowed at the Battle of Iwo Jima than any other battle in American history. A total of 27 medals were awarded (13 posthumously). The youngest Medal of Honor recipient was Jacklyn Lucas, who had turned 17 on Valentine’s Day 1945, just days before the battle had begun. Lucas, who in 1942 told recruiters he was 17, was actually only 14 when he joined the Marines. Approximately 19,000 Marines were killed during World War II. What is staggering to note is that one-third of Marines killed in action died during the Battle of Iwo Jima. To put it more succinctly, one in three Marines at the Battle of Iwo Jima was either killed or wounded. American casualties included 6,891 dead and 18,070 wounded. Of their japanese opponents approximately 22,000 soldiers — only 1,083 survived.