Civil War Wiki
Robert Leckie
Personal Information
Born: December 18, 1920(1920-12-18)
Place of Birth: {{{place of birth}}}
Died: December 24, 2001 (aged 81)
Place of Death: {{{place of death}}}
Nickname: Lucky
Birth Name: {{{birth name}}}
Other Information
Allegiance: File:Flag of the United States.svg United States of America
Participation(s): {{{participations}}}
Branch: United States Marine Corps
Service Years: {{{service years}}}
Rank: File:USMC-E2.svg Private First Class
Service number : {{{servicenumber}}}
Unit: 2nd Battalion 1st Marines
Battles: World War II
  • Battle of Guadalcanal
  • Battle of Cape Gloucester
  • Battle of Peleliu
Awards: Purple Heart
Navy & MC Commendation Medal w/ Combat V
Relations: {{{relations}}}
Other work: {{{otherwork}}}

Robert Leckie (December 18, 1920 – December 24, 2001) was an American author of popular books on the military history of the United States. As a young man, he served in the Marine Corps with the 1st Marine Division during World War II. His experiences as a machine gunner and intelligence scout during the Battle of Guadalcanal and later campaigns are said to have greatly influenced his writing.


Leckie was born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania on December 18, 1920 to an Irish Catholic family of eight children. He grew up in Rutherford, New Jersey. He began his professional writing career, before World War II, at age 16 as a sports writer for The Bergen Evening Record in Hackensack, New Jersey.[1]

In 1941, the day after the attack on Pearl Harbor, Leckie enlisted in the United States Marine Corps.[1] He served in combat in the Pacific theater, as a scout and a machine gunner in the 1st Marine Division. He participated in every major 1st Marine Division campaign except Okinawa.[1] Robert Leckie was wounded by blast concussion on Peleliu and evacuated, ending his combat tour.[2]

Following World War II, Leckie worked as a reporter for the Associated Press, the Buffalo Courier-Express, the New York Journal American, the New York Daily News and The Star-Ledger.[1] He married Vera Keller, a childhood neighbor, and they had three children: David, Geoff and Joan.[3] According to Vera, in 1951 he was inspired to write a memoir after seeing South Pacific on Broadway and walking out halfway through. He said ‘I have to tell the story of how it really was. I have to let people know the war wasn’t a musical.’[4] His first and best-selling book, Helmet for My Pillow, a personal war memoir, was published in 1957.[5] Leckie subsequently wrote more than 40 books on American war history, spanning from the French and Indian War (1754–1763) to Desert Storm (1991).[6][7] Robert Leckie died in 2001 after fighting a long battle with Alzheimer's Disease.[8]

Leckie's war memoirs, Helmet for My Pillow, along with Eugene B. Sledge's book With the Old Breed, formed the basis for the 2010 HBO series The Pacific, the successor to Band of Brothers. He was portrayed in the miniseries by James Badge Dale.


Military history[]


  • Marines!. Bantam Books. 1960.  Fiction.


  • Lord, What a Family!. Random House. 1958.  Autobiography.

Medals and decorations[]

Template:Ribbon devices Navy and Marine Corps Commendation Medal with Combat V
File:Purple Heart BAR.svg Purple Heart
Template:Ribbon devices US Navy Presidential Unit Citation with 4 stars
Template:Ribbon devices Asiatic-Pacific Campaign Medal with 5 service stars
File:World War II Victory Medal ribbon.svg World War II Victory Medal


See also[]

[[File:Template:Portal/Images/Default|32x28px|alt=]] World War II portal
[[File:Template:Portal/Images/Default|32x28px|alt=]] United States Marine Corps portal


External links[]

ca:Robert Leckie es:Robert Leckie pl:Robert Leckie pt:Robert Leckie