Adm. Harris presents 442nd vet with French Legion of Honor durin - Hawaii News Now - KGMB and KHNL

Adm. Harris presents 442nd vet with French Legion of Honor during 'Go For Broke'

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HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) -

It was a special moment Sunday night for a 442nd Regimental Combat Team veteran who was instrumental in one of the most notable battles in World War II.

Adm. Harry Harris presented the French Legion of Honor to retired Staff Sgt. Masa Nakamura for his role in the “Battle of the Lost Battalion,” an incredibly intense and dangerous mission to rescue another U.S. Army regiment trapped behind enemy Nazi lines.

"The rescue of the Lost Battalion in the Vosges Mountains of France is considered one of the greatest land battles of World War II," Harris said. "For those who survived this epic battle, like Masa, I know it's still painful to discuss. But this is vital history – history that must be remembered and recognized."

Nakamura, who already has three Purple Hearts for his combat wounds, was actually awarded the French Legion of Honor last month.

The presentation happened at a private viewing of the new film “Go For Broke” at the Hawaii Theater.  

Gov. David Ige, who also attended the premiere, declared Oct. 8 as “Go For Broke” day. 

The movie, set for release at the Hawaii International Film Festival in November, is an origins piece about the 100th Infantry Battalion and 442nd Regimental Combat Team, the most decorated combat unit in U.S. military history made up of Japanese-American soldiers from Hawaii and the Mainland.

"Go For Broke" was the motto used by the 442nd, derived from a gambler's slang that meant that the player would risk it all to win big.

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