The Black Sands Spring 2024 Edition Is Available For Downloading. Click the link below to access the edition.

MARK YOUR CALENDARS: The 80th Anniversary of The Battle For Iwo Jima will be held from 19 – 23 February 2025 at the Hilton Arlington National Landing Hotel in Arlington, Virginia.

To register please click on the following link:

Iwo Jima Association Of America Reunion 2025

Click the link below to reserve your hotel room at the discount price for the event.

The 80th Anniversary of Iwo Jima Reunion – Start your reservation (

More Information on the 2025 Reunion will be posted here soon.


The IJAA Scholarship Award Program Awards Two $5,000 Checks To Essay Winners

MajGen David Bice, MIDN 2/C Truman Lazarus, MIDN 2/C Weston Bush and CAPT Mary Mortimer


The Reunion of Honor, March 30, 2024

The President of IJAA MajGen David Bice, LtCol Art Sifuentes and Ms Bonnie Haynes travelled to Iwo Jima and Japan for the commemoration of the Battle For Iwo Jima.

This link takes you to the website for the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Japan and has an article detailing this important visit.

(Copyright Japan Office of Prime Minister)

From left to right: LtCol (ret) Art Sifuentes, Bonnie Haynes, MajGen (ret) David Bice, Prime Minister Kishida Fumio, Minister Yoshitaka Shindo, Deputy Chief Cabinet Secretary Mr. Murai and Tetsuro Teramato on the far right is President of the Iwo To Association of Japan.

(Copyright Japan Office of Prime Minister)

MajGen (Ret) David Bice meets with Prime Minister Kishida Fumio


The 79th Reunion Anniversary Gala/Symposium

The Young Marines Present The Colors

Juan Montano

Louis Bourgault

Frank Wright

Louis Bourgault, Frank Wright, Julian Smith, Ivan Hammond and Juan Montano


Arlington County Police Provided Their Usual Outstanding Motorcycle Escort

They Are Here With Frank Wright

LtGen Norman Smith, Chairman of IJAA With MSgt Steven Williams of The Quintet.

MajGen David Bice, President/CEO of IJAA At The National Museum Of The Marine Corps

Reunion Guests Gather Around The Five Iwo Battle Veterans At A Museum Display

Meet Jessamyn Harter, IJAA’s new staff member. She is the Graphics Designer who designed the cover on the banquet program below. This design is also on the cover of The Black Sands.

Jessamyn’s grandfather, Martin C. Conner Jr., fought for all 36 days on Iwo Jima. He was a mortar man with the 1st Battalion, 26th Regiment, 5th Marine Division.

Juan Montano shares his story with ROTC Midshipman.

Frank Wright in discussions with Young Marines and other Reunion Guests


Iwo Battle Veterans

Above, left to right: Ed Carroll, Nilse Mocklar, Dale Faughn, Larry St. Clair, and Courtland Pelton at the Reunion of Honor Ceremony.

Above: Ed Buffman (red and blue tie), Ed Cavallini, unknown veteran, and Louis Bourgault

Louis Bourgault points to an invasion kiosk on Guam. Louis was a part of the invasion of Guam in August 1944 before going on to fight in The Battle for Iwo Jima.


Guam/Iwo Jima 2023

Getting back to Guam and Iwo Jima……as the old adage goes, “the more things change, the more they stay the same”. And so it was with the 78th Anniversary of the Battle for Iwo Jima Commemorative return to Guam and Iwo Jima as compared to 2019 following the limitations granted by COVID-19.

The 78th Anniversary tour was  graced with over 400 attendees, including eight Iwo Jima veterans. The hotel, formerly called the Outrigger Resort Hotel, was physically the same but with a new name, the Dusit Thani Beach Hotel with some management changes. That said, the wonderful hospitality was unchanged.

The Guam tour schedule remained basically the same as in the past with visits to Big Navy, the Memorials, the Museum and  lunch at Jeff’s Pirates Cove. We considered a visit to the Marine base of Camp Blaz, however it is still under heavy construction for the foreseeable future. 

Due to the increased number of participants this year from the WW II Museum, Valor, Ambrose and MHT, we had to use the Dusit Thani Beach Hotel’s sister hotel, the Dusit Thani, to accommodate the educational symposium and evening banquet on the 24th  of March with our Guest of Honor and Commander of Joint Region Marianas, RDML Benjamin Nicholson.

On the morning of the 25th, we flew to Iwo Jima on three chartered United Airlines 737s to be met by Marine representatives who later joined our Iwo Jima Marine veterans, Buel Faughn, Archie Holt, Louis Bourgault, Nils Mockler, Ed Cavallini and Navy veterans  Edgar Buffman and Courtland Pelton, the Commandant of the Marine Corps General David Berger, US Ambassador to Japan, the Honorable Rahm Emmanuel, plus other US and Japanese dignitaries and bereaved families for the traditional and reverent Joint Reunion of Honor (ROH).

The heat, humidity and reduced availability of transportation presented some challenges, but were met and overcome by our intrepid travelers as they hiked to the ROH, the beaches and/or Mt. Suribachi.

Unfortunately, Gerbers Museum has closed for now, so on the 26th we returned to Jeff’s for the Fiesta where we hosted our friends from the Japanese Embassy in Washington, Deputy Chief of Mission, Mr. Tamaki Tsukada and Political Counsellor, Mr. Sasake Tomonori.

We experienced some lessons-learned given the changes in personnel and policy at the various command levels, however we look forward to working with all for the 79th   Anniversary in 2024. Please visit the website for some great photographs of Guam/Iwo Jima 2023.

Reunion of Honor Ceremony, Iwo Jima, 25 March 2023

Mt. Suribachi And The Invasion Beaches, 25 March 2023, 78 Years After The Invasion

On Final Approach To Iwo Jima Airfield With Mt. Suribachi In The Background


Donate to the MajGen Fred Haynes Scholarship Program



Welcome to the new Iwo Jima Association of America website.

The Iwo Jima Association of America (IJAA) is a 501 C 3 non-profit public charity dedicated to preserving, commemorating and perpetuating the history and legacy of the Battles for Iwo Jima and Pacific Islands, and the veterans who fought.

IJAA is committed to this dedication through the promotion of historical and scholarly study of the battles for Iwo Jima and other Pacific Islands by educating veterans, their descendants, students, academia and the general public. To that end, programs are comprised of educational symposia, tours of Iwo Jima and other Pacific Island battle sites and an educational outreach program.