Remembering WWII while fighting a new 'war'
Team Andersen Airmen participate in the 75th Annual Guam Liberation Day Parade July 21, 2019 in Hagatna, Guam. File photo Airman 1st Class Amir R. Young/US Air Force
With the upcoming Guam Liberation Day and 4th of July commemoration, Gov. Lou Leon Guerrero called for reflection on the past struggles and triumphs of the island.
At the same time, the governor reminds the community that the world is once again at war. “We are battling an invisible enemy—Covid-19 is a threat to each of us, but our manamko are most vulnerable," she said during the proclamation signing on Thursday. "For that reason, we cannot celebrate the way we are used to."
Due to the Covid-19 pandemic that requires the continuation of social distancing mandate, there will be no July 21 traditional parade to mark the 76th Guam Liberation Day. The governor instead encouraged residents to display Guam and U.S. flags.
Furthermore, the governor reminded the community to proceed with caution when attending any social gathering, holiday-related or otherwise.
The governor announced the cancellation of July 21 parade the Liberation Day carnival as early as May.
The commemoration of Guam’s liberation from the Japanese occupation is a great time of solidarity for the island, according to Real Adm. John Menoni, commander of Joint Region Marianas.
“This day [Liberation] is a solemn reminder of the monumental pain and sorrow that World War II brought to the Indo-Pacific region," Menoni said.
The 4th of July fireworks display is scheduled to be held in Apra Harbor this Saturday. “We are emphasizing all the same mitigation measures [the] governor just spoke about whether its physical distancing, wearing masks, good hygiene, staying home if you’re sick,” Menoni said.
He said the event will be in accordance with current restrictions, public gathering of more than 25 people remain prohibited and the event will be limited to those who have access to the Naval Base. Viewers are encouraged to limit their mobility by staying at home or in their vehicles at the time of the display.
The fireworks display will be livestreamed on Facebook.