Battle of Midway: 71st Anniversary Commemoration


Story Number: NNS130602-05Release Date: 6/2/2013 10:47:00 PM
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By By Mass Communication Specialist 3rd Class Bradley J Gee, NPASE West Public Affairs

SAN DIEGO (NNS) -- Active duty, retired service members and civilians observed the heroism of World War II veterans at the 71st Anniversary Battle of Midway commemoration aboard the USS Midway Museum, June 1.

The Battle of Midway took place June 4-7, 1942, where U.S. Navy carrier strike forces prevented the Japanese from capturing control of Midway Island in the Pacific. The victory proved to be a pivotal point of World War II and is an important marker in naval heritage.

"History has shown that the Battle of Midway was absolutely the turning point in the war in the Pacific and probably the entire war of World War II," said Vice Adm. Thomas H. Copeman III, commander, Naval Surface Forces, commander Naval Surface Force, U.S. Pacific Fleet. "It was the end of the Japanese offensive six months into the war."

During the ceremony, 13 surviving veterans, along with family and friends of those who gave the ultimate sacrifice during the Battle of Midway, were honored by current military personnel and civilians, for their extraordinary service 71 years ago.

"The event is to honor the veterans of Midway," said Copeman. "It's to make sure that the memory of the Battle of Midway and the heritage of what it stands for is not lost upon the younger generation of Sailors."

The commemoration included a special video presentation that was voiced by World War II veterans involved in the historic battle.

"The video gives us an idea where our veterans are coming from," said Damage Controlman 1st Class Mike Minotti. "We got to see the veterans perspective of what happened, and it ties us closer to our heritage."

The observance also included several speakers. Retired U.S. Marine Corps officer Lt. Col. Jerry Coleman, who also served during World War II, gave the keynote speech.

"If every Sailor gets a chance to interact with these veterans, they need to," said Minotti. "It instills a sense of pride and makes the Sailor proud."

For more information about the Battle of Midway visit http://www.history.navy.mil/Midway/midwaybattle-index.htm or use #Midway to join the conversation on social media about Navy's most historic victory.

For more news from Navy Public Affairs Support Element West, visit www.navy.mil/local/pacensandiego/.

STORY COMMENTS8 COMMENTS
6/10/2013 1:21:00 AM
As a high school classmate, I am proud of Lt Col Jerry Coleman for all he has contributed to sports and for his military service. I spent Navy service in WWII and Korea as well as a total of active and reserve service of thirty one years. CDR Lawrence D. Hawkinson, USNR RET

6/6/2013 8:56:00 AM
My father served at the Battle Of Midway as a 19 year old Marine. It was his first deployment as a Marine. He survived. And became a career military man. I am always proud of him and his military career. Thank you to all that served and serve.

6/5/2013 6:31:00 PM
Regarding "The Battle of Midway", there is a YouTube video, most of which was filmed aboard the USS Yorktown (CV10) - "The Fighting Lady: The Lady and the Sea" 1945 wdtvlive 42 (63296 hits). This was the first WW II live footage filmed in Technicolor (20th Century Fox). Our mother took my brother (age 8) and myself (age 12) to see this film in 1945. It was about 92 minutes of excitement and suspense. I am absolutely amazed that this film is still available today. I strongly recommend it! Enjoy!

6/3/2013 1:17:00 PM
I am very proud of my Mass Communication Specialist 3rd Class Bradley J Gee, NPASE West Public Affairs.

6/3/2013 11:26:00 AM
Thanks also to all the support staff that made this go off without a hitch! It was a great time for everyone in attendance. I know all the families that came were understandably touched by the real appreciation for the sacrifices of the men at this battle. Thank you. Jack

6/3/2013 7:43:00 AM
This is a beautiful article regarding the Midway. My husband Senior Chief Charles L. Thistle served on the Midway, Sitkin and the US Enterprise. He served 24 years in the US Navy. World Ward II, Korea and Vietnam. He passed away on October 3rd, 2011. He was a very proud man to have accomplished serving his country. Sailors from the Brunswick Naval Air Station in Brunswick, Maine would always acknowledge him when he started talking about the Midway. Sailors, Thank You! Mrs. Joan R. Thistle

6/3/2013 6:17:00 AM
GREAT READ.KEEPING OUR NAVY HISTORY ALIVE .

6/3/2013 3:56:00 AM
Bonjour, Tous mon respect, pour ses braves

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Guest speaker, retired USMC Lt. Col. Jerry Coleman, gives a speech at the 71st Anniversary Battle of Midway commemoration ceremony.
130601-N-IC565-122 SAN DIEGO (June 01, 2013) Guest speaker, retired USMC Lt. Col. Jerry Coleman, gives a speech at the 71st Anniversary Battle of Midway commemoration ceremony. The Battle of Midway took place June 4-7, 1942, in which U.S. Navy carrier strike forces prevented the Japanese from capturing control of Midway Island in the Pacific. The victory proved to be a pivotal point of World War II and is an important marker in naval heritage. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist Third Class Bradley J. Gee/Released)
June 2, 2013
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