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WINDOW ROCK, ARIZONA The Navajo Nation has lost yet another Code Talker.
Navajo Code Talker Samuel Tso
Samuel Tso, 89, of Lukachukai, Arizona, passed away Wednesday evening with family members beside him at San Juan Regional Medical Center in Farmington, New Mexico.
Navajo Nation President Ben Shelly has ordered the Navajo Nation flag to be flown at half staff beginning at today, May 10, through sundown May 14, to honor Code Talker Tso for his service to the Navajo Nation and his country in World War II.
“The Navajo Nation has lost another Code Talker and that saddens my heart. The Code Talkers have brought great pride to our Nation and the loss of Samuel Tso saddens not only myself, his loss saddens the Navajo Nation. On behalf of the First Lady, the Vice President, and the Navajo people, we offer our prayers, condolences and words of encouragement to the Tso family. Samuel Tso was a true Navajo warrior,”
said President Shelly.
Navajo Nation Flags at Half Mast
Code Talker Tso was born on June 22, 1922, at Black Mountain near Many Farms, Arizona, However, he frequently told stories about how he made up his birth date to get a job.
Samuel Tso served with the US Marine Corps with the 5th Marine Division from February 13, 1943 to March 29, 1946. Tso was one of the Marines who captured Iwo Jima. A highly decorated Marine, he was discharged as a Private First Class and was awarded the Asiatic Pacific Campaign Medal, the Victory Medal of World War II, the USMC Good Conduct Medal and the National Defense Service Medal.
Code Talker Tso was Zuni Tachiinii and born for Nakai Dine'e.
Family members are quick to point out that Tso was not one of the original 29 Navajo Code Talkers. However that fact really does not matter for in recent years, Tso worked hard to establish the yet to be completed Navajo Code Talkers Museum and Veterans' Project so that Navajo people and all Americans will remember forever the vast contributions the Code Talkers made during World War II.
Funeral services are pending with Desert View Funeral Home in Shiprock, New Mexico.
posted May 10, 2012 9:59 am edt