Battle of Midway Commemorated at NAS Lemoore

Last Updated : 6/6/2011 9:35:08 AM

By Melinda Larson

Battle of Midway

Boatswain’s Mate Third Class Samara Scarver with her daughter, Spirit, takes a look back in time at a Battle of Midway photo display following NAS Lemoore’s Battle of Midway commemoration June 3.  (U.S. Navy photo by Melinda Larson) 110603-N-G0110-027

LEMOORE, Calif. ( June 3, 2011) — Sailors were reminded of their naval heritage during a Battle of Midway commemoration at Naval Air Station Lemoore June 3.

The installation's tribute to the historic battle included a wreath-laying, photo display and the playing of Taps to honor the men who defeated the Japanese during a four day conflict in the central Pacific June 4-7, 1942.  With scores of aircraft launched from three aircraft carriers and Midway Island itself, the Battle of Midway is a centerpiece of this year's naval aviation centennial observance.

"In the 100 years of naval aviation I would argue that not one historical event or battle has been more important to carrier aviation than the Battle of Midway," Cmdr. Robert Quinn, NAS Lemoore executive officer said during his remarks.

Fought six months after the Imperial Japanese Navy's surprise attack at Pearl Harbor, the Battle of Midway is often referred to as the turning point of the war in the Pacific.

"Ironically, the name Midway not only marks a geographical location half way across the Pacific, it also marked the turning point of the War," said Quinn, a seasoned strike fighter pilot with more than 2,500 flight hours.  "Japan was never able to catch up from its losses of over 3,000 men, their best carrier aviators, four front line aircraft carriers and all of the planes that flew from them."

Today the Navy's Pacific Fleet strike fighter squadrons are home based at NAS Lemoore, and the Battle's legacy echoes across the installation.

"The work we do here will ensure that we are never outmatched on the battlefield.  From this base, we train the world's deadliest warriors to fly the world's most advanced aircraft and just about everyone in this audience contributes to that end.  Take pride in that, and take time to remember those that went before us," Quinn concluded.