Local MP, Sir Mike Penning, joined the local branch of the Royal British Legion to commemorate VJ Day on 15 August by laying a wreath at the South East Asia campaign and Burma Star Association memorials in the Walled Garden in Gadebridge Park.
VJ Day marks Victory over Japan when the Japanese surrendered to the Allies on 15 August 1945 bringing the six years of the Second Word War to an end.
The commemoration event was attended by Major Bob Fisher, President of the Hemel Hempstead Branch of the Royal British Legion and Chairman Sue Rose as well as the Leader of Dacorum Borough Council Cllr Ron Tindall and Deputy Mayor of Dacorum Cllr Brenda Link.
Sir Mike said:
“Although many years have passed, it is important that we remember the huge sacrifices and devastating loss of life in the Far East. For those that survived, their families still had to wait many months for the return of their loved ones.
“The South East Asia campaign was a brutal one and has frequently, both at the time and since, been overlooked. Even though the ‘Burma Campaign’, was the longest campaign fought by the British and Commonwealth armies in the Second World War, and, indeed, the largest with 1.3 million British, Commonwealth and Allied troops coming under the South East Asia Command, it has never been seen as important as the war in Europe due to it being so far away. However, the scale and impact of the South East Asia campaign should not be underestimated and I have listened in awe and horror to stories from Burma Campaign veterans in years past.
“We will never forget.”