From the editor:
Working with Hawai‘i veterans from three wars was a special privilege. I also interacted with numerous other veterans and military personnel, active and retired: Veterans Affairs staff, leaders of veteran service organizations, and veterans councils and volunteers. All were courteous, helpful and able to provide primary source information or refer me to someone who could. I was so encouraged and impressed — not only with their service to our country, but also with their deep respect for fellow veterans. Page space does not allow me to thank everyone by name, but I am deeply grateful to Ed Gayaga, Lloyd Kitaoka, Harry Fanning and Rona Adams, whose contacts led me to the stories of the amazing veterans who appear on our cover.
Understanding the Korean War was difficult because so few combat veterans returned and relatively little was published about the war. In Hawai‘i, chapters of two organizations, the 5th Regimental Combat Team and the American Korean War Veterans Association
actively support Korean War veterans and relations with the Republic of South Korea. Interviews with combat veterans Philipe Batalan and Lucio Sarnico, who served in Korea and Vietnam, were a special blessing.
— Katherine Kama‘ema‘e Smith, Editor
In this issue…
VETERANS: UNDERSTANDING MORAL INJURY
More recently, we have come to understand post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Extremely traumatic experiences like being ambushed or failing to save fellow troops can leave one overcome with physiological symptoms, such as hypervigilance, memory or concentration problems, insomnia, panic attacks and flashbacks. Recognition of the problem and therapies to address the symptoms are becoming more mainstream.
IWO JIMA: A LESSON IN IDEALS AND SACRIFICES
The battle of Iwo Jima was like no other in history. Japanese forces defended the island from caves within it. Beginning in 1943, Lt. Gen.Tadamichi Kuribayashi turned Iwo Jima into an impenetrable underground fortress — 17 miles of tunnels connecting 1,500 pillboxes, gun emplacements, living quarters and a hospital. Aerial and naval bombing for 73 days never penetrated the stronghold. U.S. Marines landed under cover of artillery fire from battleships, but there was no place to hide or dig in. Casualties mounted to 5,000 after just four days.
PREPARE FOR RETIREMENT MILESTONE
Age 55: If you retire in the year you turn 55 or later, this is your first opportunity to take penalty-free withdrawals (income taxes still apply) from employer-based qualified retirement plans. While tapping into your retirement income may make sense for you, before taking action, consider the impact early withdrawals will have in later years.
WALKING ON AN UNDERWATER TREADMILL
Underwater treadmills (UTM) are revolutionizing physical therapy and fitness. Top athletes are utilizing UTM or treadmill pools for peak performance or speedy recovery after an injury. Underwater walking is very different from land-based walking, especially regarding shock absorption, energy expenditure and muscle activity.
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