Unsung Heroes of World War II


Unsung Heroes of World War II

The Story of the Navajo Code Talkers

Deanne Durrett
With a new afterword by the author

144 pages
17 images, 5 maps


July 2009


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eBook (EPUB)
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January 2022


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About the Book

On February 23, 1945, U.S. Marines claimed victory in the battle of Iwo Jima, one of the most important battles in the Pacific islands during World War II. Instrumental to this defeat of Japanese forces was a group of specialized Marines involved in a secret program. Throughout the war, Japanese intelligence agencies were able to intercept and break nearly every battlefield code the United States created. The Navajo Code Talkers, however, devised a complex code based on their native language and perfected it so that messages could be coded, transmitted, and decoded in minutes. The Navajo Code was the only battlefield code that Japan never deciphered. Unsung Heroes of World War II details the history of the men who created this secret code and used it on the battlefield to help the United States win World War II in the Pacific.

Author Bio

Deanne Durrett has published numerous nonfiction books and biographies for children and young adults, plus two “as told to” memoirs for adult readers.
For more information about Ms. Durrett’s books please visit her Web Site at http://www.deannedurrett.com.


“This book presents readers with a fine combination of Navajo history and culture and background information about World War II in the Pacific. . . . The well-written text . . . stresses the fact that the Navajo developed the code themselves rather than just using the language as it is normally spoken. Sidebars add interest and details to the text. Maps and vintage photos are well placed and fully documented.”—School Library Journal

“[A] strong, well-written resource about the Navajo’s role in the Allied victory . . . Astounding facts, as well as stirring personal accounts of battle, make for fascinating, educational reading.”—Booklist

Table of Contents

1: The Navajo
2: Birth of the Idea
3: The Original 29
4: Special Assignment
5: The Navajo School
6: The Code Talkers Hit Guadalcanal
7: The Navajo Code in Operation
8: The Code Talkers' Shining Hour
9: Home Again
10: The Code Talkers' Contribution
Selected Further Reading List

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