Tomorrow is the 68th anniversary of the last invasion of World War II, when four divisions of the Army, and two of the Marines, fought on the island of Okinawa.
The 82-day battle became the bloodiest of the Pacific campaign, with more than 48,000 U.S. casualties to Japan's 107,000, plus an estimated 142,000 civilians killed or wounded.
Military historians say those staggering losses led to the decision to force Japan's surrender by dropping atomic bombs rather than attempt an even-costlier invasion of the Japanese mainland.
Two local veterans who survived Okinawa and would've been part of that invasion are forever grateful for that decision.
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