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Ewin Aley is a WWII, Korea and Vietnam veteran from Kansas. He served in the US Marine Corps and later joined the US Air Force. He was one of the honorees during the Battle of the Coral Sea 75th Anniversary at the World War II Memorial in Washington, D.C., on May 4, 2017.
Ewin Aley is a WWII, Korea and Vietnam veteran from Kansas. He served in the US Marine Corps and later joined the US Air Force. He was one of the honorees during the Battle of the Coral Sea 75th Anniversary at the World War II Memorial in Washington, D.C., on May 4, 2017. (Meredith Tibbetts/Stars and Stripes)
Ewin Aley is a WWII, Korea and Vietnam veteran from Kansas. He served in the US Marine Corps and later joined the US Air Force. He was one of the honorees during the Battle of the Coral Sea 75th Anniversary at the World War II Memorial in Washington, D.C., on May 4, 2017.
Ewin Aley is a WWII, Korea and Vietnam veteran from Kansas. He served in the US Marine Corps and later joined the US Air Force. He was one of the honorees during the Battle of the Coral Sea 75th Anniversary at the World War II Memorial in Washington, D.C., on May 4, 2017. (Meredith Tibbetts/Stars and Stripes)
The Battle of the Coral Sea 75th Anniversary Commemoration at the World War II Memorial in Washington, D.C., on May 4, 2017.
The Battle of the Coral Sea 75th Anniversary Commemoration at the World War II Memorial in Washington, D.C., on May 4, 2017. (Meredith Tibbetts/Stars and Stripes)
Rep. Roger Marshall, R-Kan., at right, closes his eyes during taps while WWII, Korea and Vietnam veteran Ewin Aley, foreground, salutes at the Battle of the Coral Sea 75th Anniversary at the World War II Memorial in Washington, D.C., on May 4, 2017.
Rep. Roger Marshall, R-Kan., at right, closes his eyes during taps while WWII, Korea and Vietnam veteran Ewin Aley, foreground, salutes at the Battle of the Coral Sea 75th Anniversary at the World War II Memorial in Washington, D.C., on May 4, 2017. (Meredith Tibbetts/Stars and Stripes)
U.S. Army Col. Jayson Altieri and Capt. Marc Batsford, Canadian Forces Naval attache, salute a wreath at the Battle of the Coral Sea 75th Anniversary at the World War II Memorial in Washington, D.C., on May 4, 2017.
U.S. Army Col. Jayson Altieri and Capt. Marc Batsford, Canadian Forces Naval attache, salute a wreath at the Battle of the Coral Sea 75th Anniversary at the World War II Memorial in Washington, D.C., on May 4, 2017. (Meredith Tibbetts/Stars and Stripes)
Representing the Kansas Honor Flight, Congressman Roger Marshell and World War II, Korea and Vietnam veteran Ewin Aley place a wreath during the Battle of the Coral Sea 75th Anniversary at the World War II Memorial in Washington, D.C., May 4, 2017.
Representing the Kansas Honor Flight, Congressman Roger Marshell and World War II, Korea and Vietnam veteran Ewin Aley place a wreath during the Battle of the Coral Sea 75th Anniversary at the World War II Memorial in Washington, D.C., May 4, 2017. (Meredith Tibbetts/Stars and Stripes)
Lt. Col. Melissa Campbell, part of the Australian defense staff, places a wreath with WWII veteran Loyal Shirley from Vermillion, Kansas at the Battle of the Coral Sea 75th Anniversary at the World War II Memorial in Washington, D.C., on May 4, 2017.
Lt. Col. Melissa Campbell, part of the Australian defense staff, places a wreath with WWII veteran Loyal Shirley from Vermillion, Kansas at the Battle of the Coral Sea 75th Anniversary at the World War II Memorial in Washington, D.C., on May 4, 2017. (Meredith Tibbetts/Stars and Stripes)
Navy Chaplain Commander Michael Pumphrey lays a wreath with World War II veteran Charles Friedley during the Battle of the Coral Sea 75th Anniversary Commemoration at the World War II Memorial in Washington, D.C., on May 4, 2017. Friedley was a paratrooper in the 82nd Airborne. Pumphrey and Friedley were representing the United States during the ceremony.
Navy Chaplain Commander Michael Pumphrey lays a wreath with World War II veteran Charles Friedley during the Battle of the Coral Sea 75th Anniversary Commemoration at the World War II Memorial in Washington, D.C., on May 4, 2017. Friedley was a paratrooper in the 82nd Airborne. Pumphrey and Friedley were representing the United States during the ceremony. (Meredith Tibbetts/Stars and Stripes)
The Battle of the Coral Sea 75th Anniversary Commemoration at the World War II Memorial in Washington, D.C., on May 4, 2017. Kansas Honor Flight veterans watch the ceremony.
The Battle of the Coral Sea 75th Anniversary Commemoration at the World War II Memorial in Washington, D.C., on May 4, 2017. Kansas Honor Flight veterans watch the ceremony. (Meredith Tibbetts/Stars and Stripes)
The Battle of the Coral Sea 75th Anniversary Commemoration at the World War II Memorial in Washington, D.C., on May 4, 2017. A veteran from the Kansas Honor Flight watches the ceremony.
The Battle of the Coral Sea 75th Anniversary Commemoration at the World War II Memorial in Washington, D.C., on May 4, 2017. A veteran from the Kansas Honor Flight watches the ceremony. (Meredith Tibbetts/Stars and Stripes)
The Battle of the Coral Sea 75th Anniversary Commemoration at the World War II Memorial in Washington, D.C., on May 4, 2017. The Kansas Honor Flight watches the ceremony.
The Battle of the Coral Sea 75th Anniversary Commemoration at the World War II Memorial in Washington, D.C., on May 4, 2017. The Kansas Honor Flight watches the ceremony. (Meredith Tibbetts/Stars and Stripes)
The Battle of the Coral Sea 75th Anniversary Commemoration at the World War II Memorial in Washington, D.C., on May 4, 2017.
The Battle of the Coral Sea 75th Anniversary Commemoration at the World War II Memorial in Washington, D.C., on May 4, 2017. (Meredith Tibbetts/Stars and Stripes)
The Battle of the Coral Sea 75th Anniversary Commemoration at the World War II Memorial in Washington, D.C., on May 4, 2017.
The Battle of the Coral Sea 75th Anniversary Commemoration at the World War II Memorial in Washington, D.C., on May 4, 2017. (Meredith Tibbetts/Stars and Stripes)
The Battle of the Coral Sea 75th Anniversary Commemoration at the World War II Memorial in Washington, D.C., on May 4, 2017.
The Battle of the Coral Sea 75th Anniversary Commemoration at the World War II Memorial in Washington, D.C., on May 4, 2017. (Meredith Tibbetts/Stars and Stripes)
Veterans with the Kansas Honor Flight salute at the start of the Battle of the Coral Sea 75th Anniversary Commemoration at the World War II Memorial in Washington, D.C., on May 4, 2017.
Veterans with the Kansas Honor Flight salute at the start of the Battle of the Coral Sea 75th Anniversary Commemoration at the World War II Memorial in Washington, D.C., on May 4, 2017. (Meredith Tibbetts/Stars and Stripes)
The Battle of the Coral Sea 75th Anniversary Commemoration at the World War II Memorial in Washington, D.C., on May 4, 2017.
The Battle of the Coral Sea 75th Anniversary Commemoration at the World War II Memorial in Washington, D.C., on May 4, 2017. (Meredith Tibbetts/Stars and Stripes)
The Battle of the Coral Sea 75th Anniversary Commemoration at the World War II Memorial in Washington, D.C., on May 4, 2017.
The Battle of the Coral Sea 75th Anniversary Commemoration at the World War II Memorial in Washington, D.C., on May 4, 2017. (Meredith Tibbetts/Stars and Stripes)
The Battle of the Coral Sea 75th Anniversary Commemoration at the World War II Memorial in Washington, D.C., on May 4, 2017.
The Battle of the Coral Sea 75th Anniversary Commemoration at the World War II Memorial in Washington, D.C., on May 4, 2017. (Meredith Tibbetts/Stars and Stripes)
The Battle of the Coral Sea 75th Anniversary Commemoration at the World War II Memorial in Washington, D.C., on May 4, 2017.
The Battle of the Coral Sea 75th Anniversary Commemoration at the World War II Memorial in Washington, D.C., on May 4, 2017. (Meredith Tibbetts/Stars and Stripes)
Col. Jayson Altieri, US Army, and Capt. Marc Batsford, Canadian Forces Naval attache, salute at the Battle of the Coral Sea 75th Anniversary at the World War II Memorial in Washington, D.C., on May 4, 2017. At the far left is the guardian for honor flight participant Ewin Aley.
Col. Jayson Altieri, US Army, and Capt. Marc Batsford, Canadian Forces Naval attache, salute at the Battle of the Coral Sea 75th Anniversary at the World War II Memorial in Washington, D.C., on May 4, 2017. At the far left is the guardian for honor flight participant Ewin Aley. (Meredith Tibbetts/Stars and Stripes)
From left to right, World War II veteran Charles Friedley, Navy Chaplain Commander Michael Pumphrey, Lt. Col.Melissa Campbell from the Australian defense staff, and World War II veteran Loyal Shirley salute during The Battle of the Coral Sea 75th Anniversary Commemoration at the World War II Memorial in Washington, D.C., on May 4, 2017.
From left to right, World War II veteran Charles Friedley, Navy Chaplain Commander Michael Pumphrey, Lt. Col.Melissa Campbell from the Australian defense staff, and World War II veteran Loyal Shirley salute during The Battle of the Coral Sea 75th Anniversary Commemoration at the World War II Memorial in Washington, D.C., on May 4, 2017. (Meredith Tibbetts/Stars and Stripes)
Al Waszczyseyn, foreground, and other Air Force veterans with the Kansas Honor Flight salute at the start of the Battle of the Coral Sea 75th Anniversary Commemoration at the World War II Memroail in Washington, D.C., on May 4, 2017.
Al Waszczyseyn, foreground, and other Air Force veterans with the Kansas Honor Flight salute at the start of the Battle of the Coral Sea 75th Anniversary Commemoration at the World War II Memroail in Washington, D.C., on May 4, 2017. (Meredith Tibbetts/Stars and Stripes)
The Battle of the Coral Sea 75th Anniversary Commemoration at the World War II Memorial in Washington, D.C., on May 4, 2017.
The Battle of the Coral Sea 75th Anniversary Commemoration at the World War II Memorial in Washington, D.C., on May 4, 2017. (Meredith Tibbetts/Stars and Stripes)

WASHINGTON — When United States and Australian forces faced off against Japan from May 4-8, 1942 in the Battle of the Coral Sea, it marked the first time aircraft carriers engaged each other. The battle resulted in 656 Allied and 966 Japanese deaths.

Seventy-five years later in Washington, D.C., the Friends of the National World War II Memorial and veterans with the Kansas Honor Flight participated in a commemoration of the battle.

Four wreaths were presented at the Pacific Theater side of the National World War II Memorial during Thursday's ceremony, representing the U.S., the Embassy of Australia, the Kansas Honor Flight and the Friends of the World War II Memorial.

Navy Chaplain Cmdr. Michael Pumphrey and WWII veteran Charles Friedley laid the wreath for the U.S. Friedley was a paratrooper with the 82nd Airborne.

Lt. Col. Melissa Campbell of the Australian defense staff laid the wreath representing Australia, along with Loyal Shirley, who served as a Marine stateside during the war.

Rep. Roger Marshall, R-Kan., and Ewin Aley laid the wreath representing the Kansas Honor Flight. Aley fought in WWII, Korea and Vietnam, and served in the Marines as well as the Air Force.

Representing the Friends of the National World War II Memorial were Col. Jayson Altieri, U.S. Army, and Capt. Marc Batsford, Canadian Forces Naval Attache.

The Battle of the Coral Sea was a strategic victory for the U.S. and Australia, as the damage inflicted on two Japanese carriers forced them to avoid the pivotal Battle of Midway a month later.

tibbetts.meredith@stripes.com Twitter: mjtibbs

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