Twenty-Five years ago, Senator Daniel K. Inouye was instrumental in bringing the Mighty Mo to its forever home as a museum ship at Pearl Harbor. Recently, the Battleship Missouri Memorial held a blessing and unveiling of a new exhibit – Senator Daniel K. Inouye: Hawai‘i’s Mighty Supporter, dedicated to his life and accomplishments and the USS Missouri’s journey to Hawai‘i.
“Senator Inouye had such a big heart for this ship and the people of Hawai‘i,” said, Mike Carr, president & CEO of the USS Missouri Memorial Association. “Honoring his legacy is the least we can do to express our greatest thanks for all that Senator Inouye has done to make the Mighty Mo what it is today.”
In attendance at the ceremony was Senator’s son, Ken, daughter-in-law, Jessica, granddaughter, Maggie, and friends. Kahu Kordell Kekoa conducted the blessing and shared personal memories of the late Senator.
The exhibit features unique images and objects from the Daniel K. Inouye Institute, USS Missouri Memorial Association archives, and the personal collection of Roy Yee, former President of the USS Missouri Memorial Association (UMMA). Many of the artifacts on display have never been available to the public before, including a recording of Senator Inouye’s August 21, 1996 voicemail to the association, confirming that the Mighty Mo was on her way to Hawai‘i. This confirmation of the US Navy’s decision to award the ship to UMMA cemented his hard work to establish the bookends of WWII in Pearl Harbor.
In December, a dedication ceremony was held on the forward bollard where a custom bronze plaque and detailed informational sign highlighting Senator Inouye’s legacy and link to the Battleship Missouri was installed. The significance of the forward bollard physically links the ship to Hawai‘i as a fitting representation of Senator Inouye’s association with this historic ship.
The exhibit will be on display on the ship’s Second Deck now through May 2024. For information or reservations visit USSMissouri.org.