IWO TO (March 12, 2012) Sailors assigned to USS Germantown (LSD 42) receive an honorable discharge before reenlisting atop Mt. Suribachi on the island of Iwo To, formally known as Iwo Jima. Germantown is in the area to participate in the 2012 Reunion of Honor, a ceremony to commemorate the 67th anniversary of the battle of Iwo Jima. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 1st Class Johnie Hickmon)

OKINAWA, Japan - The United States Marine Corps and the Government of Japan will conduct a ceremony to commemorate the 67th anniversary of the Battle of Iwo Jima on March 14. The event will take place on Iwo To, formerly known as Iwo Jima, and will include U.S. and Japanese veterans and their families, dignitaries and leaders from both nations, distinguished guests and Marines and sailors from III Marine Expeditionary Force.

The Battle of Iwo Jima took place during February and March of 1945 in the midst of the Pacific Campaign of World War II. Both the U.S. and Japan suffered great losses during this battle. The Iwo Jima Commemoration Ceremony is not only a time for reflection, but also an opportunity for the United States and Japan to honor the brave men who fought on this island 67 years ago. They truly represented the best of both nations.

Much has changed in the decades since the Battle of Iwo Jima and conflict in the Pacific theater during World War II. Now, the United States and Japan are partners, committed to peace and stability in the Asia-Pacific region. The Commemoration Ceremony will take place on that hallowed ground where the two allies, who were once at war, now stand side by side in peace instead of conflict.

The 67th Commemoration of the Battle of Iwo Jima provides for a humbling experience. Individuals of both nations and service members alike are afforded the opportunity to show support, gratitude and respect to the survivors of this conflict, as they inspire us to seek peace and understanding with our neighbors, and we remember and are forever indebted to the selfless service and supreme sacrifice of those who lost their lives on this hallowed ground 67 years ago.

The Commemoration Ceremony can be viewed via a live-stream video. The event will take place March 13 at 10:00 p.m. EST and March 14 at 11:00 a.m. Tokyo time at the following link: http://www.dvidshub.net/webcast/2280.