HONOLULU (NNS) -- On the 75th anniversary of its commissioning, the famous U.S. Navy battleship USS Missouri (BB-63) set sail again with the issuance of the USS Missouri Forever stamp. The U.S. Postal Service dedicated the stamp today during a pierside ceremony on the ship's deck at Pearl Harbor.
“The USS Missouri is one of the most famous Naval battleships to ever sail the sea, and now the Postal Service is proud to add her to our roster of commemorative stamps,” said Jeffrey C. Johnson, U.S. Postal Service acting enterprise analytics vice president, who dedicated the stamp. “As a graduate of the U.S. Naval Academy, I had the honor to serve in the United States Navy, and I recognize the importance this great ship brings to American history and this Forever stamp will continue to help tell that vital story.”
Joining Johnson in the ceremony was USS Missouri Memorial Association President and CEO Mike Carr, Rear Adm. Brian P. Fort, U.S. Navy Region Hawaii, and Rear Adm. Samuel Cox, US Navy (Retired), Director, Naval History and Heritage Command, Curator of the Navy.
USS Missouri was commissioned June 11, 1944. As a fast battleship heavily armed, heavily armored and capable of high speeds for its size, the ship was nicknamed “Mighty Mo.”
The ship was active in the Pacific theater in the last months of World War II. On Sept. 2, 1945, in a ceremony broadcast around the world, military officials from the Allied powers and Imperial Japan convened on her deck to sign the documents confirming Japan’s surrender and ending the war.
USS Missouri earned numerous combat awards and citations during her decades of service, which included deployments during the Korean War and Operation Desert Storm. Decommissioned for the second and final time in 1992 and removed from the Navy’s ship registry in 1995, USS Missouri now rests as a memorial and museum at the Battleship USS Missouri Memorial in Pearl Harbor.
The stamp art depicts USS Missouri from a low vantage point almost at sea level, cutting through the water at a moderate speed commensurate with entering or leaving port. Large and imposing in the frame, USS Missouri is shown in the disruptive camouflage used from her commissioning until a refit in early 1945. Clouds loom in the background, tinged with gold and rose from the sun’s rays.
Designed by art director Greg Breeding, the stamp features a digital illustration by Dan Cosgrove and is issued as a Forever stamp. This stamp will always be equal in value to the current First-Class Mail 1-ounce price.