News & Events
When the Ramp Went Down,Recollections of an Iwo Jima Survivor
February 18th, 2019 10:00am
Everyone knows the famous flag raising on Iwo Jima, but, not many know what it took to get to the top of that hill. The iconic photograph ignited the American spirit during WWII in the Pacific.
Join us on Monday, February 18, 2019, in the Admiral Nimitz Gallery Ballroom at 10 a.m. and learn first hand of the heroism and sacrifice that lead to that iconic moment. When the Ramp Went Down will take you on the personal journey of Mr. Don Graves, a Marine who fought his way up Mt. Suribachi. The program will end with a Q&A with the audience.
After the program, we will be showing the documentary, Iwo Jima by SFR Production. Both events are free and open to the public.
Born in Detroit, Michigan in 1925, Donald enlisted in the United States Marine Corps at the age of 17 on August 17, 1942.
He served two tours in the South Pacific. On February 19, 1945, his division hit the beach on Iwo Jima and secured Mt. Suribachi in three days. Thus, the famous flag raising on Mt. Suribachi. In the next five weeks of heavy fighting, the island was secured. His 5th Marine Division also served with the occupation of Japan. He was discharged January 12, 1946.
Since then, Donald has been a singer and performer in Detroit, Michigan and Hollywood, CA. After a few years, he was called to Christian ministry as a pastor and singer. Donald has had many opportunities as a guest speaker about his experiences in WWII. He also has worked for the federal prison system and Gospel Rescue Missions. Donald shared his life with his wife Rebecca for 70 years and has four adult children, six grandchildren, and twelve great-grandchildren.
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- The Kakehashi Project, “Japan’s Friendship Ties Program”
- Leadership Seminar
- Texas Historical Commission Free Day
- VOCES Oral History Project Workshop
- 2nd Annual Robotics Competition
- May Nimitz Junior Corps- Where in the World?: Geography of WWII
- May WWII Pacific Combat Program
- 10th Annual Nimitz Golf Classic
- June Nimitz Junior Corps- Where in the World?: Geography of WWII
- July WWII Pacific Combat Program
- July Nimitz Junior Corps- East Meets West: The Japanese During WWII
- Author’s Forum
- August Nimitz Junior Corps- East Meets West: The Japanese During WWII
- August WWII Pacific Combat Program