Veterans Day marked with appreciation lunch, Navajo code talker visit

After the Tribal Council meeting Saturday, November 9, citizens honored Pokagon veterans with a lunch and recognition ceremony thanking them for their service. 

The following week Navajo code talker Peter MacDonald Sr. visited in what is likely the last trip one of these WWII native marines will make to our area. MacDonald was here to speak to several community groups. He was the guest of honor of Pokagon veterans November 13 at a dinner at the Community Center before speaking at Southwestern Michigan College that evening. MacDonald and his fellow Navajo marines called upon their native language during World War II to transmit top secret messages in the Pacific. The Navajo code is the only code in modern military history to never be broken. Its use saved hundreds of thousands of American lives and shortened the war in the Pacific. 

On November 16, the Indiana Native American/Indian Affair Commission hosted a veterans ceremony at the Indiana Veterans Home in West Lafayette. Chairman Wesaw provided remarks to those attending, and the ceremony honored Native American Indian women veterans. Pokagon Gayle “Rusty” Green was among those recognized.