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Flags Fly at Half-staff
CHINLE, ARIZONA - Flags are flying at half-staff across the Navajo Nation in honor of Navajo Code Talker Billy Crosby, who laid to rest in Chinle yesterday.
Crosby, 85, passed away last Wednesday, December 21.
Distinguished Military Service
“The Navajo Nation has lost another hero. Our prayers and condolences, and support go out to the Crosby family,”
commented Navajo President Ben Shelly.
Crosby was born near Many Farms on July 15, 1926. He went to school at Saint Michael Indian School in St. Michaels, Arizona. He completed a five-year course of study by the time he was 16 years old.
Though he told the US Marines Corps he was 17 years old, Crosby was 16 years old when he was drafted. He served in World War II in the Pacific Theater as a code talker message center man from July 9, 1945 to August 10, 1946. He was part of battles and expeditions in Japan during his enlistment.
He was honorably discharged as a Corporal from the 1st Separation Company, Marine Corps Battalion, in San Diego, California on January 14, 1946.
On April 27, 1946, he was awarded the Good Conduct Medal and in 2002 he received a Silver Medallion from President George W. Bush.
After his distinguished military service, Crosby married Christine Thompson. The couple had ten children. One son, Marshall Crosby preceded him in death.
He is survived by his wife of 63 years Christine and children, Helen Tsinnajinnie, Evelyn Crosby, Charlene Iyua, Michael Crosby, Jerry Crosby, Geraldine Crosby, Evalina Crosby, Earlene Begay and Lisa Iuya. Additionally, he is survived by 33 grandchildren, 43 great-grandchildren, and one great great-grandchild.
Flags will fly at half-staff through December 30.
Updated 5:40 pm est; posted December 28, 2011 7:40 am est
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