American Memorial Park hosted the 65th anniversary of the Battle for Saipan on June 15th.
On that date in 1944, Saipan became a turning point in the Pacific Theatre of World War II. The park commemorates the bravery and sacrifice of those who died during the battles for Saipan, Tinian, and the Philippine Sea.
World War II veterans, Marine Scouts from Saipan, and residents caught up in the liberation battles shared personal stories â some tragic, some funny, and all very moving â about the events of three horrific weeks in the summer of 1944. These stories were videotaped by students from the Northern Mariana College and will be archived along with other oral histories at the park.
The veterans were also honored during a wreath-laying ceremony at the Court of Honor, where 5,204 names are etched in granite as a tribute to those who gave their lives during the Mariana Campaign. Lt. Governor Eloy S. Inos presented medals to each of the veterans and Marine Scouts following a keynote speech by Rear Admiral William French, U.S. Defense Representative Guam, Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands (CNMI), Federated States of Micronesia, and Republic of Palau.