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Watching some WWII documentaries and have seen a half dozen or so BAR rifle with vertical grips on the forearm.  All of these views were in the later parts of 1944 and into 1945, and all were in the Pacific,

 

Can any one tell me if this was a variant or a field fix?

 

It looks like a factory mod and I can see the value of it, but I have never before seen nor heard of this.

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Yes it is a field mod.  The only factory BAR's with vertical grips were foreign manufactured.

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