2020 SCHOLARSHIP RECIPIENTS:
Lyuka Devers is the great-granddaughter of shipmate John Devers and attends Cal State, Long Beach, majoring in Nursing.
Jacob DeGregory is the great-grandson of shipmate Thaddeus Tenerowicz and attends Penn State University, majoring in Business/Marketing.
Jacob DeGregory (right) with father Capt. Chris DeGregory and 2013 scholarship recipient Sara Ivill
READ THE 2020 ESSAYS:
The 2020 Essay Prompt:
2020 marks the 75th anniversary of the end of WW II during which over 1 million American service members became casualties of war. Only during the Civil War was loss of life among American service members along such a large scale. 2020 also marks the 75th anniversary of the end of the last and most deadly battle of WWII in the Pacific Theater - the Battle of Okinawa. At Okinawa over 49,000 American casualties were sustained including 12,520 killed in action, among which were 60 crew members of the USS Emmons (DD457/DMS22). Again, only during the Civil War at the Battle of Gettysburg, where it’s estimated more than 50,000 soldiers were either killed, wounded or missing in action, had America witnessed a battle of such large scale carnage and loss of life.
At The Emmons Association’s most recent reunion at Gettysburg, Pennsylvania, the words of Abraham Lincoln delivered during his famous Gettysburg Address resonated among many in attendance, when he extolled the sacrifice of those who died at Gettysburg in defense of the principles upon which this nation was founded and exalted his listeners to resolve “that these dead shall not have died in vain - that this nation, under God, shall have a new birth of freedom, and that government of the people, by the people, and for the people, shall not perish from the earth.”
Describe the historical significance of the Battle of Okinawa and what role the Emmons played in determining the battle’s outcome. In view of the fact that the war ended within a few months after the Battle of Okinawa and the use of the atomic bomb, some would argue that the sacrifice of the Emmons was in vain. How would you counter this argument?
Throughout America’s history, as exemplified by the crew members of the USS Emmons, our soldier citizens have answered the call to defend and preserve our sacred freedom, unity and identity as a nation. What specific actions can you as an individual and as a member of the Emmons family do on your part to ensure that the sacrifices made by our veterans in the words of Lincoln will “not have been in vain” and do not elapse with the passage of time?
Lyuka Devers with grandfather Mike Devers