One of the four plaques on the Marine Corp monument at War in the Pacific'sAsan Beach Unit was pried off it's mount as a result of the 150 mile per hour winds that pounded Guam for over twelve hours during Supertyphoon Pongsona in December. The plaque, which was removed from the monument as a result of wind, was found lying on the ground near the monument when typhoon damage was being assessed.
This one plaque recently received conservation and preservation treatment from John Gerber, a Marine Corps Veteran who has a passion for and expertise in refurbishing and rehabilitating WWII plaques, monuments, artillery, and vehicles. President of the Pacific War Museum Foundation, Gerber volunteered his services to refurbish and treat the fallen plaque and to remount the plaque on the monument.
Gerber was less than impressed with the status of the other plaques that remained on the monument and then volunteered his time, expertise, and experience to refurbish the three remaining plaques.
Wanting the monument and its plaques to be in a presentable condition for the men they honor, Gerber has volunteered to do the work for free and to also return and mount the remaining three plaques in time for Guam's Liberation Day.
While the Supertyphoon may have destroyed the WAPA museum and thrashed some of the parks artillery, plaques, and monuments, the natural disaster was unable to break the feeling of community and care that thrives on Guam.
Thanks to John Gerber, one more monument was be returned to a condition that War in the the Pacific and the Park Service can be proud of. Our typhoon recovery may be slow, but the forward momentum can not be stopped.