AAA Editor Notes
World War II Memorial is just w. of 17th St. (in West Potomac Park) at the e. end of the Reflecting Pool, between the Lincoln Memorial and the Washington Monument. It honors the 16 million men and women who served in the U.S. armed forces during the war and the millions who supported the war effort at home. Twenty-four bronze bas-reliefs of various scenes related to the war years mark the ceremonial entrance. They depict numerous aspects of the cause, including enlistments, major battles, bond drives, women in the military, air and submarine warfare, field medics and V-J Day.
Two 43-foot pavilions at the north and south ends of the oval-shaped memorial plaza mark victory in the war's two major theaters, Atlantic and Pacific. Radiating outward from the pavilions are 56 17-foot-tall granite pillars representing the District of Columbia and the existing U.S. states and territories at the time of the war. These pavilions and pillars form the memorial's outer boundary along with the Freedom Wall, a roughly 85-foot-long and 9-foot-high wall filled with more than 4,000 sculpted gold stars representing the more than 400,000 Americans who died in service. The Rainbow Pool fills the interior space.
Inscriptions of war locations and inspirational words from President Roosevelt and military personnel appear throughout the memorial. Visitors can search and update The World War II Registry, a database honoring all American individuals who helped with the war effort.