Senior government and military leaders from the United States, New Zealand, Australia, and Japan are travelling to Honiara on 6 August to mark the 80th anniversary of the World War II Battle of Guadalcanal.
The Minister of Defence Peeni Henare is leading the New Zealand delegation along with the secretary of defense Andrew Bridgman and the Commander of the Joint Forces Rear Admiral James Gilmour.
The New Zealand High Commissioner to the Solomon Islands, H.E. Jonathan Schwass said New Zealanders from the army, air force, and navy "served with distinction in the Solomon Islands between 1942 and 1945".
"As WWII starts to slip beyond living memory, it is important that we continue to honor people of all nationalities who served and who died here."
He said the remembrance ceremonies being organized this weekend showed that they were not forgotten.
A series of commemoration events start on 7 August.
H.E, Schwass said they were a reminder that the ties between New Zealand and the Solomon Islands went back far into the past.
Solomon Scouts and CoastWatchers Trust chair, Sir Bruce Saunders, said filming the stories of those who served the US Marine Forces when they landed on Guadalcanal on 7 August 1942 was underway.
He said Solomon Islands students did not know their own history and he hoped to change that.
More than 25,000 soldiers died in the battle including dozens of Solomon Islanders.
Sir Bruce said the stories of their grandfathers and their role in saving their country needed to be passed down.
Source – Radio New Zealand.
Ons should be mindful that reportedly over 38,000 Japanese Imperial troops also died in the battle for Guadalcanal.