Hawaii 2015: The National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific

On one day during our 8-day stay in Hawaii this past January we visited the National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific in Punchbowl Crater. The cemetery is also known as Punchbowl Cemetery and was established in 1949 to honor those who gave their lives in the Pacific Theater of World War II and has since been expanded to include those who died in the Korean and Vietnam conflicts, too.

Marker near entrance to cemetery.

Marker near entrance to cemetery.

View from overlook near cemetery entrance.

View from overlook near cemetery entrance.

View just inside the cemetery entrance.

View just inside the cemetery entrance.

There are about 45,000 people buried in the cemetery today including more than 13,000 who were killed during World War II.

One of 48 Chinese Banyan trees that line the avenue leading to the Honolulu Memorial.

One of 48 Chinese Banyan trees that line the avenue leading to the Honolulu Memorial.

The Honolulu Memorial with its statue of Lady Columbia was built in 1964. The names of more than 28,000 MIAs (missing in action) are inscribed on the walls that flank the memorial’s staircase. On either side of Lady Columbia there are galleries that depict the geographical history of World War II and the Korean War. I’ll have more about these mosaics in future postings.

The Honolulu Memorial.

The Honolulu Memorial.

Some of the names of MIAs on one of many walls that flank the memorial's staircase.

Some of the names of MIAs on one of many walls that flank the memorial’s staircase.

Inscription near the Memorial Chapel.

Inscription near the Memorial Chapel.

Lady Columbia from one of the World War II mosaic galleries.

Lady Columbia from one of the World War II mosaic galleries.

A preview of the World War II history mosaics in tomorrow's posting. These two maps depict the islands of Roi-Namur and Kwajalein in the Marshall Islands where the Battle of Kwajalein Atoll took place

A preview of the World War II history mosaics in tomorrow’s posting. These two maps depict the islands of Roi-Namur and Kwajalein in the Marshall Islands where the Battle of Kwajalein Atoll took place

According to Wikipedia and other Internet sources millions of visitors come to Punchbowl Cemetery every year. On the day of our visit the gardeners outnumbered the visitors. After leaving the visitor center we noticed a busload of Japanese tourists entering the cemetery. These buses just go around the crater and don’t stop. I don’t know if the bus passengers are counted as official visitors or not.

Flag at the entrance to the cemetery.

Flag at the entrance to the cemetery.

Tomorrow we’ll take a closer look at the mosaics that cover the war in the Pacific during World War II.

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About crowcanyonjournal

I am a family man with interests in family history, photography, history and travel.
This entry was posted in Hawaii, Travel and tagged , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

One Response to Hawaii 2015: The National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific

  1. beautiful and poignant Crow!! Great images.

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