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I still remember/the sun-blown stench,
and the pit/At least two hundred yards from/The
cove we'd anchored guns in./They were blasting at
the mountains,/The beach was nearly ours.
Lucien Stryk, American Soldier Poet, The Pit

WORLD WAR II in the Pacific took everything we had. It stretched our Navy, Army, Marines, and Air Forces to distant Asian limits. It forced a new worldview, as it faced the Japanese military tyrant head on. The Pacific Monument presents the forces combining in the big picture and also captures an intimate moment.

Set against granite, repetitive lines fall away in pattern reminiscent of ocean, seamen, and battles. Remembering the courage of airmen, a P-51 is crashed, its tail section intact. Through an opening, a lone infantryman offers compassion.

Laser-etched over the Pacific Monument are photographic scenes we never want to forget At Pearl Harbor a rescue boat draws close to the burning U.S.S. West Virginia. At the Coral Sea the Lexington slides into the sea. At Midway the Yorktown succumbs hurt beyond pain . The tide turns as U. S. Navy divebombers put four Japanese carriers beneath the sea, during the Battle of Midway, the turning point in the Pacific War.

At Iwo Jima - with 25,000 casualties - Marines cling to the beach and the flag is raised on Mt. Suribachi. At Leyte Gulf through Okinawa, kamikaze suicide attacks proved a final Japanese weapon.

The Pacific Monument can only glimpse the vast story of that War. We see a soldier boy we know his duty, relief, and victory. We see him reach his hand in compassion.

All monument descriptions in the Memorial Gallery are written by Kathleen Van Ella.
Would you like to see additional pictures of work on the Memorial, click here.