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69 years after Marine's death, WW2 Museum visitor sees his diary note: Return diary to her

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    In this May 23, 2013 photo, a page of out of the diary of 22-year-old Marine Cpl. Thomas Jones featuring a photo of his high school sweetheart, Laura Mae Davis Burlingame, is on display at the National WWII Museum in New Orleans. Behind is a Marine uniform like one Jones, who died in the bloody assault on a Japanese-held island during World War II, would have worn. Before Jones died, he wrote what he called his “last life request” to anyone who might find his diary: Please give it to Laura Mae Davis, the girl he loved. Laura Mae Davis Burlingame _ she married an Army Air Corps man in 1945 _ had given the diary to Jones, and didn’t know it had survived him until visiting the museum on April 24. (AP Photo/Gerald Herbert) (The Associated Press)

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    This photo provided by the National WWII Museum shows a photo of 22-year-old Marine Cpl. Thomas “Cotton” Jones, who died in the bloody assault on a Japanese-held island during World War II. Before Jones died, he wrote what he called his “last life request” to anyone who might find his diary: Please give it to Laura Mae Davis, the girl he loved. Laura Mae Davis Burlingame _ she married an Army Air Corps man in 1945 _ had given the diary to Jones, and didn’t know it had survived him until visiting the museum on April 24. (AP Photo/National WWII Museum) (The Associated Press)

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    In this Thursday, May 23, 2013 photo, Laura Mae Davis Burlingame, 90, holds a photo of herself from high school, in her Moorseville, Ind. home. The photo filled the back cover of a diary she had given to a Marine Cpl. Thomas “Cotton” Jones, a 22-year-old machine gunner, who died in the bloody assault on a Japanese-held island during World War II. Burlingame didn’t know the military diary she gave Jones had survived him. She saw it and read, “If this Diary is lost and if it is Possible please return it to Miss Laura Mae Davis. Address. Winslow Indiana.” (AP Photo/Michael Conroy) (The Associated Press)

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    This photo provided by the National WWII Museum shows pages from the diary by 22-year-old Marine Cpl. Thomas “Cotton” Jones, who died in the bloody assault on a Japanese-held island during World War II. Before Jones died, he wrote what he called his “last life request” to anyone who might find his diary: Please give it to Laura Mae Davis, the girl he loved. Laura Mae Davis Burlingame _ she married an Army Air Corps man in 1945 _ had given the diary to Jones, and didn’t know it had survived him until visiting the museum on April 24. (AP Photo/National WWII Museum) (The Associated Press)

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    In this Thursday, May 23, 2013 photo, Laura Mae Davis Burlingame, 90, displays a copy of the first pages of the diary of Marine Cpl. Thomas “Cotton” Jones, at her Moorseville, Ind. home. Burlingame had given the diary to Jones, a 22-year-old machine gunner, who died in the bloody assault on a Japanese-held island. Burlingame didn’t know the military diary she gave Jones had survived him. She saw it and read, “If this Diary is lost and if it is Possible please return it to Miss Laura Mae Davis. Address. Winslow Indiana.” (AP Photo/Michael Conroy) (The Associated Press)

Before Cpl. Thomas "Cotton" Jones was killed by a Japanese sniper in the South Pacific in 1944, he wrote what he called his "last life request" to anyone who might find his diary: Please give it to Laura Mae Davis, the girl he loved.

Davis did get to read the diary — but not until nearly 70 years later, when she saw it in a display case at the National World War II Museum.

The 90-year-old Mooresville, Ind., woman said she didn't know the military diary she gave Jones had survived him. She said seeing it after so many years brought tears to her eyes.

Jones was killed on the third day of the U.S. assault on the Pacific island of Peleliu (PEL-uh-loo).

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