May 29, 2018

Hirono Honors Fallen Service Members and their Families on Memorial Day

Participates in Ceremonies at the National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific at Punchbowl and Hawaii State Veterans’ Cemetery at Kaneohe In Remarks at Punchbowl, Hirono Pays Tribute to Two Fallen Classmates from Kaimuki High School, Denounces Attacks on Senator John McCain

HONOLULU – Senator Mazie K. Hirono joined Gold Star families, veterans, active duty military personnel, and local elected officials to pay tribute to fallen American service members on Memorial Day. Senator Hirono spoke during the Mayor’s Memorial Day Ceremony at the National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific at Punchbowl and attended the Governor’s Memorial Day Ceremony at Hawaii State Veterans’ Cemetery at Kaneohe.

In her remarks at Punchbowl, Senator Hirono honored Brian Kong and Donald Marshall – two of her classmates from Kaimuki High School who fought and died during the Vietnam War.

“On Memorial Day, we pay tribute to all those who fought and died for our country. Today, I want to particularly honor Donald and Brian – two keiki o ka aina who gave their lives in during the war in Vietnam,” Senator Hirono said. “Our Vietnam veterans returned home to a nation divided. But today, we know the importance and need to support our troops even as we may disagree vehemently with the political decisions to send them into harm’s way.”

During her remarks, Senator Hirono also recognized the service of her colleague Senator John McCain and denounced ongoing attacks on his service and character.

“We cannot appropriately honor those who made the ultimate sacrifice for our country if, at the same time, we dishonor the service and sacrifice of those who are still with us – especially my friend and colleague John McCain,” Senator Hirono said. “It does this man and our country no honor to insult Senator McCain or to make light of his service or his current battle with brain cancer. We must be much much better than this on this solemn day and every other day.”