On 19 February 2020, there were numerous observations observing the 75th anniversary of the battle for Iwo Jima island.
Lawrence Kirby experienced a nightmare within a nightmare by surviving the assault on “Cushman’s pocket” named after Lieutenant Colonel Cushman’s 2d Battalion, 9th Marines, who became engaged in a sustained battle in extremely broken terrain incorporating a maze of caves, pillboxes, emplaced tanks, stone walls and trenches. As representative of the Iwo Jima veterans, Kirby attended and spoke at a ceremony at the Massachusetts State House.
He spoke about the young Marines who loved their friends and gave their lives to save the lives of their friends. He said that love, between families, siblings and friends is the only true value one has during his lifetime.
These are not words casually thrown together for a photo op. This is Kirby’s mantra. He lives it every day in the way he cherishes his family and looks after his wife Mary. “Semper Fi” defined.
Such are the giants who still walk among us.