“Go for Broke!” was the motto of the legendary 442nd Infantry Regiment. This regiment was predominantly composed of Japanese Americans, many of whom were born in Hawaii. They fought with great heroism in Italy, southern France, and Germany. This famous unit passed through the Hampton Roads Port of Embarkation April 21, 1944. We recently found these images in The Mariners’ Museum library as documented in the photo gallery below.
The 442nd is renowned for being the most decorated unit for its size and length of service in the history of American warfare. Kathryn Shenkle, a historian at Arlington National Cemetery, notes, “Members of this unit earned over 18,000 individual decorations including 9,486 Purple Hearts, and 5,200 Bronze Stars. The Combat Team earned five Presidential Citations in 20 days of Rhineland fighting, the only military unit ever to claim that achievement.” After the war a few men went on to achieve great personal success like U.S. Senator Daniel Inouye.