Near Window Rock in Apache County, Arizona — The American Mountains (Southwest)
About the Navajo Code Talkers
Inscription. About the Navajo Code Talkers
During World War II the Japanese possessed the ability to break almost any American military code. Over 400 Navajos, with 29 being the original Navajo Code Talkers, stepped forward and developed the most significant and successful military code of the time using their native language. So successful was this innovative code that military commanders credited it with saving the lives of countless American soldiers and with the successful engagements of the U.S. In the battles of Guadalcanal, Tarawa, Saipan, Iwo Jima, Okinawa and paved the way to victory for Allied forces in the Pacific Theater.
February 23, 2010
1. Navajo Code Talkers Marker, Window Rock, Arizona
"Were it not for the Navajos, the Marines would never have taken Iwo Jima." These were the words of Major Howard Connor, USMC 5th Marine Division Signal Officer
Far from their homes, these brave young men served our nation with honor. Sadly, the tale of their exploits remained a closely guarded secret for decades in the event that the Navajo Code Talkers unique talents would be needed again. Many Code Talkers have passed on never knowing of the honors a grateful nation are now bestowed upon the remaining brothers. It was not until 1968 when the Navajo Code was declassified.
The Navajo Code Talker Memorial was designed and executed by famed Navajo/Ute sculptor
Oreland Joe. The Navajo Code Memorial was made possible through the Navajo Code Talkers Memorial Foundation, Inc.
February 23, 2010
2. Navajo Code Talker Memorial StatueWindow Rock can be seen in the background.
[In 2010 a new marker had been placed at the base of the statue:]
The Legendary Navajo Code Talkers
During World War II, in the South Pacific Theater, the Japanese were extremely proficient at breaking into military radio communications and transmissions. Thus they were able to decipher U.S. Military codes. The U.S. Armed forces needed to find a secure method of communication if they were to have any chance of defeating a clever and intelligent foe. To counter the cleverness of the Japanese cryptographers, 29 Navajo Marines were recruited to devise a secret military code using their native language. By war’s end, there were over 400 Navajo Marines serving as code talkers and the vocabulary had doubled. So successful was this innovative code that the Marine Corps commanders credited it with saving the lives of countless American Marines and soldiers. It enabled their successful engagements throughout the Pacific Theater which included the battles for Guadalcanal, Wake Island, Tarawa, Saipan, Guam, Midway, Iwo Jima, and Okinawa. The code paved the way to early victory for the allied forces in the South Pacific. Major Howard M. Conner, 5th Marine Division Signal Officer stationed on Iwo Jima, commented on the gallantry
of the Navajo Code Talkers: “Were it not for the Navajos, the Marines would not have taken Iwo Jima.”
February 23, 2010
3. The Window Rock, at Window Rock, Navajo Nation, Arizona
This is a closer photo of the Window Rock that gave the capital community of the Navajo Nation its name.
Far from their homes, these brave young Navajo Marines served our nation with honor and dignity. The tale of their exploits remained a closely guarded secret for decades in the event that the Navajo Code Talkers unique talents would be needed again. In 1968 the Navajo code was finally declassified. In July 2001, at the National Capital Rotunda, United States President, the honorable George W. Bush, awarded the Congressional Gold Medals to the first 29 Navajo Code Talkers, their surviving spouses or children. In November of 2001 at the Navajo Nation capital of Window Rock, Arizona, the Congressional Silver Medals were awarded to the rest of the Navajo Code Talkers, their surviving spouses or children. Sadly, many of the Navajo Code Talkers have passed on never knowing of the honor a grateful nation has bestowed upon them. The Navajo Code Talkers will never be forgotten.
Dine’ Bizaad Yee Atah Naayee’ Yik’eh Deesdlii
Erected by Navajo Code Talkers Memorial Foundation, Inc.
Marker series. This marker is included in the Medal of Honor Recipients marker series.
Location. 35° 40.874′ N, 109° 2.971′
W. Marker is near Window Rock, Arizona, in Apache County. Marker can be reached from BIA Route 100 (Route 100) 0.8 miles east of Route 12 (Arizona Route 264) when traveling north. Touch for map. State Route 264 to Window Rock, N. on Route 12 to Farmington. Stop light .5 mile N. of SR 264 is BIA 100. Take BIA 100 NE to the Window Rock Parking lot and Navajo Nation Park. Marker is in this post office area: Window Rock AZ 86515, United States of America.
By Bill Kirchner, September 23, 2010
4. About the Navajo Code Talkers Marker
New plaque has been mounted on the base of the statue.
Other nearby markers. At least 1 other marker is within walking distance of this marker. In Remembrance of Our Warriors / Navajo Warrior Memorial (within shouting distance of this marker).
More about this marker. The marker and Code Talker Memorial statue are immediately south of the Window Rock.
Regarding About the Navajo Code Talkers. This marker and monument were visited on February 23, 2010, the 65th anniversary of the Battle of Iwo Jima.
Also see . . .
1. Official Site of the Navajo Code Talkers. This site offers links to the history, the stories, the code, photos and other information regarding the Code Talkers. (Submitted on February 25, 2010.)
2. The Code. It is the only unbroken code in modern military history. It baffled the Japanese forces of WWII. It was even indecipherable to a
Navajo soldier taken prisoner and tortured on Bataan. In fact, during test evaluations, Marine cryptologists said they couldn't even transcribe the language, much less decode it. (Submitted on October 27, 2011, by Michael Tiernan of Danvers, Massachusetts.)
By Bill Kirchner, September 23, 2010
5. The New Plaque Mounted on the Base of the StatueThe Legendary Navajo Code Talkers
1. Still the only unbroken military code to this day.
One of the most remarkable feats of this group of dedicated men and families was that the code they developed and used was never broken!
See the "Also See" link The Code for additional information. Note To Editor only visible by Contributor and editor
— Submitted October 27, 2011, by Michael Tiernan of Danvers, Massachusetts.
Categories. • Native Americans • Patriots & Patriotism • War, World II •
6. Navajo Code Talkers Memorial
By Frank Houdek, November 3, 2001
7. The Navajo Nation Code Talkers
[ This bronze plague dedicated by the Lost Dutchman Chapter 5917 of E Clampus Vitas on November 3, 2001, travels among the 110 Navajo Nation Communities ]
During W.W. II the Navajo Language was developed into the most successful military code of all time. Thanks to the 29 Navajos who created the code. This enabled the Navajo Marines to communicate military coded messages.
First used in late 1942, orders and military strategic instructions were transmitted by voice code which the Japanese never broke. Hundreds of Navajos served in the Marine Corps and were credited for the successful battles of Guadalcanal, Tarawa, Iwo Jima. Okinawa and other areas.
Due to the top secret nature of this code system no Navajo Code Talkers received any honors for public recognition.
In the year 2000, Congress passed legislation authorizing the President of the United States to award the Gold Medal of Honor to the original 29 Navajo Code Talkers in Washington D.C. on July 28, 2001. Silver Medals will be awarded to the balance of the Navajo Code Talkers who qualified.
We recognize and salute the achievement, resourcefulness, dedication to service, courage and patriotism of the U.S. Marine Navajo Code Talkers.
Credits. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016. This page originally submitted on February 24, 2010. This page has been viewed 6,275 times since then and 12 times this year. Last updated on January 11, 2012. Photos: 1, 2. submitted on February 24, 2010. 3. submitted on March 3, 2010. 4, 5. submitted on October 5, 2010, by Bill Kirchner of Tucson, Arizona. 6. submitted on January 23, 2010. 7. submitted on May 24, 2010, by Frank Houdek of Kingman, Arizona. • Syd Whittle was the editor who published this page.