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Military

By USMC Cpl Aubry L. Buzek

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Greatest Generation Walking Tour
(May 14, 2010)

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The Greatest Generation Walking Tour is a collection of U.S. military heritage art in Tuna Harbor Park in downtown San Diego, located next to the USS Midway museum.
The Greatest Generation Walking Tour is a collection of U.S. military heritage art in Tuna Harbor Park in downtown San Diego, located next to the USS Midway museum.
 SAN DIEGO (MCN -5/9/2010) — “Two things have altered not since first the world began. The beauty of the wild green earth and the bravery of man,” said Theodore Percival Cameron Wilson in his poem “Magpies in Picardy.”

One can enjoy and celebrate both under the sunny San Diego sky at The Greatest Generation Walking Tour, which is a collection of U.S. military heritage art in Tuna Harbor Park, located next to the USS Midway museum.

The Greatest Generation Collection honors and celebrates the people, events and military heritage spanning the time from World War II to today in a beautiful garden setting.

The walking tour begins in the shadow of the USS Midway on a tree-lined path that starts at the “Aircraft Carrier Memorial” by T.J. Dixon and James Nelson. A nine-foot tall black granite statue lists all of the U.S. Naval aircraft carriers, while statues of an enlisted airman and a naval aviator look on.

Continuing down the path, the next memorial art encountered is a sculpture titled “Homecoming” by Stanley Bleifield. The statue depicts the reunion of a sailor and a woman, who are locked in a warm embrace. A child wraps his arms around his parents, a touching homage to the sacrifices made by families during a deployment.

The next tribute on the walk is the “Battle of Leyte Gulf Memorial and Admiral Sprague Bust” by Moon Kim. The memorial is dedicated to Sprague and the 13 ships and 7,300 men that were under his command during the heroic naval action fought off the island of Samar on Oct. 25, 1944, during

the Battle for Leyte Gulf.
The Greatest Generation Walking Tour in downtown San Diego begins at the "Aircraft Carrier Memorial" by T.J. Dixon and James Nelson. A nine-foot tall black granite statue lists all of the U.S. Naval aircraft carriers while statues of an enlisted airman and naval aviator look on.
The Greatest Generation Walking Tour in downtown San Diego begins at the "Aircraft Carrier Memorial" by T.J. Dixon and James Nelson. A nine-foot tall black granite statue lists all of the U.S. Naval aircraft carriers while statues of an enlisted airman and naval aviator look on.
The next piece of art, a recognizable image for most Americans, is “Unconditional Surrender” by J. Seward Johnson. The 25-foot tall statue depicts a famous photograph taken in Times Square in New York City, where a sailor grabs a young nurse and kisses her at the announcement of the end of World War II.
The 25-foot tall statue "Unconditional Surrender" by J. Seward Johnson, depicts a famous photograph taken in Times Square in New York City, where a sailor grabs a young nurse and kisses her at the announcement of the end of World War II. The statue is part of The Greatest Generation Walking Tour in downtown San Diego.
The 25-foot tall statue "Unconditional Surrender" by J. Seward Johnson, depicts a famous photograph taken in Times Square in New York City, where a sailor grabs a young nurse and kisses her at the announcement of the end of World War II. The statue is part of The Greatest Generation Walking Tour in downtown San Diego.
 A statue of Bob Hope at the "National Salute to Bob Hope and the Military" by Eugene Daub and Steven Whyte, looks out into a crowd of bronze statues of military service members. The memorial is part of the Greatest Generation Walking Tour in downtown San Diego.
A statue of Bob Hope at the "National Salute to Bob Hope and the Military" by Eugene Daub and Steven Whyte, looks out into a crowd of bronze statues of military service members. The memorial is part of the Greatest Generation Walking Tour in downtown San Diego.
The last stop on The Greatest Generation Walking Tour is the "USS San Diego Memorial" by Eugene Daub and Louis Quaintance.
The last stop on The Greatest Generation Walking Tour is the "USS San Diego Memorial" by Eugene Daub and Louis Quaintance.
 After the iconic statue, the path leads through thick, green vegetation to a shaded patio. The “National Salute to Bob Hope and the Military” by Eugene Daub and Steven Whyte greets visitors with the sounds of the iconic funny-mans' stand-up comedy for the troops. A statue of Hope stands in front of 16 bronze sculptures depicting military audience members, including a fighter pilot, World War II Marine Corps sergeant, Korean War Marine and many others.

The final monument along the peaceful walk is the “USS San Diego Memorial” by Eugene Daub and Louis Quaintance. The geometric walls of the statue depict locations and names of the different battles fought during World War II, and a bronze sculpture of a sailor represents the many heroes that fought valiantly during the war.

Although The Greatest Generation Walking Tour is open to everyone to reflect and remember for free all the time, one upcoming holiday offers visitors an especially meaningful experience.

"The Port of San Diego is proud to have this memorial along the waterfront to honor those who served our country," said the Port of San Diego Chairman of the Board of Port Commissioners Stephen Cushman. "Memorial Day is the perfect opportunity for the public to get out on the Big Bay and see the Greatest Generation Collection."

For a map and more information about the tour, visit the Web site www.portofsandiego.org.

Article and photos by USMC Cpl Aubry L. Buzek
Marine Corps Air Station Miramar
Copyright 2010

Reprinted from Marine Corps News

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