August 14, 2015
WASHINGTON, D.C. – In recognition of the 70th anniversary of the Allied Forces victory in World War II, U.S. Senators Susan Collins and Angus King released the following statements today, which they have also submitted to the Congressional Record, paying tribute to those who served in the Second World War:
“It is said that crisis builds character. For an entire generation of Americans, crisis did not build character; it revealed it. Today, we express our nation’s gratitude to all veterans of the Army, Navy, Air Force, Marines, Coast Guard, and Merchant Marine for their service and sacrifice seven decades ago,” said Senator Collins. “…The people of Maine were part of this great endeavor. Some 80,000 Mainers served in World War II, more than any previous war. More than 2,500 laid their lives upon the altar of freedom…On this 70th anniversary of victory in World War II, let us recommit ourselves to the spirit that guided our nation through its darkest days and that lights our way into the future.”
“Maine’s support to our Armed Forces during the war years was unparalleled in terms of dedication, scope, and impact. […] During World War II, nearly 80,000 Maine citizens served overseas. Their steadfast perseverance, patriotism, and bravery in the face of grave danger helped secure a better future for generations to come,” Senator King said. “On this seventieth anniversary of World War II, we remember all the American and Allied servicemembers who bravely served on land, air, and sea; as well as those on the home front providing for our warfighters. Their service and sacrifices contributed to international peace and stability and ensured the continued promise of the freedoms we enjoy today.”
On August 14, 1945, Japan announced its declaration of unconditional surrender to the Allied Forces. Following the surrender of Germany in May of 1945, the victory in the Pacific marked the close of World War II. Japan officially surrendered in a ceremony on the deck of the USS Missouri on September 2, which is celebrated as Victory over Japan Day, or V-J Day.
The Senators’ complete statements can be read HERE.