Veterans Day Ceremony for Japanese-American Soldiers of World War II

USS Missouri Memorial Association

The USS Missouri Memorial Association’s annual Veterans Day sunset ceremony at Pearl Harbor will honor the 70th anniversary of the Nisei Veterans of World War II. Twenty-five Nisei veterans — octogenarians and older — will be among the 450 participants expected at the event.

“This year we decided to honor the Nisei as a focus, while still honoring all the veterans,” said Jackie McCormick, director of events at the USS Missouri Memorial Association.

Monday’s ceremony on the fantail of the Battleship Missouri will coincide with the opening of a new Nisei exhibit on board the ship, to honor their legacy. In addition, there will be historic military vehicles and reenactments on the pier. The ceremony is free.

These second-generation U.S.-born Japanese-Americans are soldiers who fought for the United States after Japan attacked Pearl Harbor on Dec. 7, 1941, despite U.S. government mistrust of them due to their ancestry.

They were considered “enemy aliens” and only allowed to serve in segregated Army units; the Navy and Marines wouldn’t allow them in their ranks.

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