USS Missouri to celebrate 75 years with new postage stamp
JEFFERSON CITY - The United States Postal Service is honoring the USS Missouri with a commemorative stamp to celebrate the 75th anniversary of the battleship's commissioning.
Missouri is hosting a ceremony at the Capitol on Tuesday at 2 p.m. to celebrate the occasion. The ceremony will be held in the State Museum in the Veterans Gallery where an 18-foot brass model of the battleship is displayed.
The official stamp unveiling is being held in Pearl Harbor on the battleship. Cole County Commissioner Sam Bushman said the state wants to celebrate its namesake too.
"Since the Battleship Missouri is named for our great state, we just feel like we need to do something in the capital," he said.
The ceremony in Missouri will include the stamp's unveiling, a proclamation from Gov. Parson and Secretary of State Jay Ashcroft will read part of the speech that is also being read at Pearl Harbor.
Nicknamed "Mighty Mo", the USS Missouri was commissioned on June 11, 1944 as a heavily armed, high-speed battle ship. During its decades of service, the USS Missouri earned numerous combat awards and citations from deployments during the Korean War, Operation Desert Storm, and World War II.
Retired Navy Captain David Durbin said the battleship entered World War II late but still played an important role.
"The battleship was able to participate in a number of battles during the last year or so of the war, most notably it supported the invasion of the island of Iwo Jima, Okinawa Island and, most importantly, it would serve as the scene for the surrender ceremony on September 2nd, 1945," he said.
After the ceremony, Bushman said he will present the proclamation from Gov. Parson and a framed sheet of the stamps to the Military Museum in Jefferson City for display.
Durbin said this ceremony is not only important to those in the Navy, but also important to the state of Missouri and he encourages residents to come and be a part of history.
The USS Missouri stamp is being issued as a Forever stamp and is available for purchase at post office locations nationwide.