Iwo Jima Flag Raising Memorial

By Alex Galante – The Daily Breeze

“See what it says here? It says that ‘We don’t need a lot of people. We just need a few good men.’ and that’s what makes the Marine Corps the Marine Corps. And I don’t know if you’ve noticed, but when you see Marines, they say ‘Oohrah!'”

Iwo Jima was the deadliest battle in World War II, leading to the capture of the Island from the Japanese Imperial Army. The commemorative event will be hosted by the PFC Paul E. Ison Marine Corp League Detachment #60 of Lee County.

“In 1999 we had 51 people that survived Iwo Jima, two years ago we had 21, last year we had about 10, now we are down to about five to seven,” said Korean War veteran, Sgt.George Colom on the remaining survivors of Iwo Jima. “Whoever shows up, we will announce their names, and they will stand up and we will identify what unit they served with.”

The Iwo Jima battle took place from Feb. 19 to March 26, 1945, lasting 36 days. Colom described it as a 24/7 bloodbath, resulting in 26,000 Marine casualties. The survivors alive today are now in their 90s. Keep Reading…

Alex Galante is a journalist local to the Lee County, Southwest Florida area. To read the latest by Alex Galante, click here: www.alexgalante.com/blog