The U.S. Navy’s last battleship was honored this week by the Postal Service on the 75th anniversary of her commissioning during World War II.
USS Missouri (BB-63) made history when she hosted high-ranking military officials from the United States, the Allied powers, and the Empire of Japan in a surrender ceremony that ended World War II in September 1945.
“Mighty Mo” played an integral role in the final defeat of Imperial Japan — most notably providing support for the capture of the islands of Iwo Jima and Okinawa.
During the June 11 dedication ceremony in Hawaii, the battleship was also praised for its role during the Cold War, the Korean War and the Persian Gulf War, before it was decommissioned for good in 1992.
“USS Missouri — one of the most famous battleships that ever sailed the sea — served her country well,” said Jeffrey C. Johnson, the Postal Service’s acting enterprise analytics vice president and a U.S. Navy veteran.
Johnson led the ceremony on the deck of the ship, which rests in Pearl Harbor.
Other speakers were Mike Carr, president and chief executive officer of the USS Missouri Memorial Association; Rear Adm. Brian P. Fort of U.S. Navy Region Hawaii; and retired Rear Adm. Samuel Cox, director of the Naval History and Heritage Command and curator of the Navy.
The stamp — which is available at Post Offices and usps.com — depicts Missouri from a low vantage point. The ship is cutting through the water and wearing the camouflage she donned in 1944.
In his remarks, Fort recalled rummaging through his grandparents’ attic as a boy to find stamps that he could add to his collection. He then discussed the significance of immortalizing the Missouri on a stamp.
“A new stamp is the start of a journey,” Fort said. “It sparks our curiosity. It encourages us to ask questions about the image. And in the case of Missouri, it invites us on a voyage to learn more about this amazing battleship and her storied history.”