Ronald Orville Pigg was born on September 13, 1910 in Massena, Iowa to Arthur R. Pigg and Myrtle Irons Pigg.
He lived in Omaha, Nebraska for a time when he worked in construction, and studied for two semesters at the University of Omaha. He graduated from Iowa State College in 1935 with the Bachelor of Science degree in Civil Engineering. While at Iowa State, he was a member of the Alpha Tau Omega fraternity. He married Ruth Stiver on July 2, 1935 at Des Moines, Iowa.
Ronald worked as a civilian employee for the army. As of July 24, 1939, he was working a construction superintendent at Fort Mill, Philippines. He was probably still stationed there during the Fall of Corregidor.
He spent one year as Camp Engineer at D-4, Missouri Valley, Iowa and two years in the Engineer Office, Rock Island, Engineer District. Ronald died either January or February 28, 1945.
Fort Mills, Phillppine Islands, March 12, 1940. Wallace E. Barron, Iowa State College Ames, Iowa:
We receved your letter contain the list of Iowa State people some time ago, and wish to take this opporunity of of thanking you. We came over on the Army Transport U.S. GRANT with Captain Vernon, but of course had now idea he was from our part of the country. Our life here is very interesting, and the time seems to pass very rapidly. Living on an Army Post is of course a new and unusual experience for us, but we are getting along fine. My work is extremly varied, and keeps me more than busy. I am the only civilian engineering in the department at present, and of course, designing, layout, and construction [sic] of everything from tunnels to houses and roads. I have a large carpenter shop and a staff of Filipino civilians number about 60 mens, carpenters, painters, forement, etc. My common labor is all done by "Bilibids", or prisoners from the Philippine prison in Manila. I have about 150 of these prisoners now, with a Philippine Scout guard for each six men. They are a bad lot, and of course my inability to speak Tagalog on Spanish complicates my work with them. I have picked up a little Tagalog, but it is a difficult language for American to master.
Our home is on an island located in the middle of the comparatively narrow entrance to Manila Bay, and about 32 miles from Manila. This island is very rough, and heavily wooded, and of course heavily fortified. They have two boats to and from Manila a day, so we can go whenever we wish, but don't care too much for the town. All in all, we are having a good time, even though we get pretty homesick at times. Right hand drive cars, and the traffic movement on the left side of the road are confusing, but help to make us realize how far we are from home.
Tell all our friends hello, and thank you once more for your kind wishes.
Respectfully, Ronald O. Pigg."