WASHINGTON (NNS) -- Naval District Washington (NDW) celebrated the 77th anniversary of the Battle of Midway with a wreath laying ceremony at the U.S. Navy Memorial in Washington, D.C., June 4.
Sailors and Marines gathered alongside surviving veterans of the battle to commemorate the events in the Pacific Theatre during World War II.
Chief of Naval Operations, Adm. John Richardson, served as the guest speaker during the ceremony after laying a wreath in memory of the lives lost during the battle.
“Rather than go through the intricacies of the battle, I’d like to really focus on the true power that won that great contest 77 years ago, which was of course, the people,” said Richardson.
“You can talk about Midway forever. You can fill rooms with the volumes of books that have been written about Midway and you’ll never be short of inspiration. But I don’t think there’s anything more inspiring than to see the fight that’s still in our veterans today.”
The Battle of Midway was a naval battle in the Pacific Theater of World War II from June 4-7, 1942. It was six months after Japan's attack on Pearl Harbor and one month after the Battle of the Coral Sea. The Navy defeated the Imperial Japanese. U.S. forces inflicted devastating damage on the Japanese fleet that proved irreparable, and military historian John Keegan called it "the most stunning and decisive blow in the history of naval warfare."
“Today, across the fleet ships are celebrating the Battle of Midway. Every Sailor takes a moment to pause and think about what happened on this glorious day. It might be tempting to attribute success at Midway to a stroke of luck. But I’ll tell you, this is luck that we made. This was luck that was formed by the tenacity and fighting spirit of everybody involved,” said Richardson.