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    70 Years Later, Legacy of Iwo Jima Veterans Honored

    70 Years Later, Legacy of Iwo Jima veterans honored

    Photo By Sgt. Cuong Le | Lt. Gen. Lawrence F. Snowden, 93-year-old Iwo Jima veteran, pays tribute during the...... read more read more



    Story by Cpl. Jose Lujano 

    Defense Media Activity - Marines

    FORT GEORGE G. MEADE, Md. -- Veterans, distinguished visitors, active-duty service members, families and dignitaries representing Japan and the U.S. came together to commemorate the 70th anniversary of the Battle of Iwo Jima at Crawford Hall at Marine Barracks Washington, Washington, Feb. 19.

    A wreath laying ceremony followed the commemoration at the Marine Corps War Memorial in Arlington, Virginia.

    The ceremony at the Barracks included guest speakers: 93-year-old, retired Lt. Gen. Lawrence F. Snowden, 36th Commandant of the Marine Corps Gen. Joseph Dunford and the Japanese Ambassador to the United States Kenichiro Sasae along with two Medal of honor recipients from the battle, Hershel “Woody” Williams and Barney Barnum.

    The ceremony was a time to remember the intense battle American veterans fought to take the black sands of the volcanic islands from a fierce and well-prepared Japanese force.

    “What is there left to say 70 years later, what is there left to say that a thousand magazine articles, books haven’t said,” Snowden, who stormed the black beach as a 23-year-old captain, said. “It occurred to me, that I have been a very fortunate man, because I had lived through what I would call incredible events.

    “Incredible is defined and I quote, ‘too extraordinary and improbable to be believed.’ I have to believe because I lived it and here we are.”

    Japan, a relatively small country, assembled a large naval force and moved it thousands of miles across that Pacific Ocean to make an attack against America. According to Snowden, it was incredible that the American nation moved to a full time footing to go to war. Millions of housewives dropped their aprons, stepped out of the kitchens to become “Rosie the Riveters,” and how all the branches of service worked together as a joint force in order to reach success.

    While many lives were lost at the climax of the Pacific campaign, its finale created a new relationship between Japan and the U.S.— one of peace.

    “I’m particularly proud of the relationship our Marines have with the Japanese Ground Self-Defense Force and the Japanese people,” said Dunford.



    Date Taken: 02.19.2015
    Date Posted: 02.20.2015 09:48
    Story ID: 154972
    Location: FORT MEADE, MD, US 

    Web Views: 417
    Downloads: 0