A Great Day for a Parade
Contact: Dan Brown, 671-333-4051
War in the Pacific National Historical Park on Guam celebrated with the island community in its largest event of the year – the 67th Liberation Festivities. Since 1944, the year Guam was liberated from Japanese occupation by U.S. forces, the island has reflected on the bravery and sacrifice of many – American servicemen and civilians – in the re-taking of this American territory.
The focal point of the annual celebration is the parade, held
on Liberation Day, July 21. Guam’s villages, military branches, organizations,
government agencies, and other groups show their pride and creativity with
bands, marches, and scores of hand-made floats. The parade is over four hours
long and brings thirty-thousand spectators. This year, the park partnered with
the village of Asan, upon whose beaches the 3rd Marine Division came
ashore on the first day of the 1944 battle, to decorate a float and enter it in
the parade. We thank Mayor Vicente San Nicolas and the Village of Asan for this partnership.
Other park events included a tour of battle sites for returning veterans who fought on Guam in 1944, several interpretive talks and hikes for the public, and the annual wreath-laying ceremony at the Asan Bay Overlook, memorializing those who suffered the harsh 32-month Japanese occupation and those who were killed during combat.