HONOLULU, Hawaii (HawaiiNewsNow) - The Army Black Knights football team will wear special “Tropic Lightning” alternate uniforms to honor the Hawaii-based 25th Infantry Division in the 2020 Army-Navy Game next Saturday.
The uniforms honor the service of the division’s Korean War-era 27th Infantry, nicknamed “The Wolfhounds”, who played a pivotal role during the massive assault by the North Korean People’s Army in 1950.
The Black Knight’s helmets feature the division’s memorable insignia, dubbed the “Electric Strawberry” by soldiers, a golden lightning bolt placed on top of a red taro leaf — the colors were those of the late-Hawaiian monarchy.
Moving to the jersey, one shoulder of the uniform shows a wolf head — the symbols of the Wolfhounds regiment — while the other shoulder shows an era-appropriate American flag which had only 48 stars before Alaska and Hawaii became states at the end of the fifties.
“Having previously served in the 25th Infantry Division as Wolfhounds in the late 1990′s, Command Sgt. Maj. [William] Pouliot and I are proud Wolfhounds turned Tropic Lightning ‘Light Fighters’” Maj. Gen. James Jarrard, Commanding General of the 25th Infantry Division and U.S. Army Hawaii said in a statement. “From World War II to the present day, Tropic Lightning soldiers have served at the forefront of America’s defense and we’re excited to see the great Light Fighters of America’s Pacific Division represented on national television by the Army team to mark the 70th anniversary of the Korean War.”
The division was conceived on Oahu shortly before Japan’s attack on Pearl Harbor and its soldiers were among the occupying forces in Japan following its surrender — the division has also served in Vietnam, Haiti, Bosnia, Iraq and Afghanistan.
The Navy Midshipmen — who lead the all-time series 61-52 — also rolled out their alternate “Ocean Camo” uniforms for the 121st meeting between the Mids and the Black Knights.
The storied rivalry game, which is usually played in Philadelphia, has moved to West Point due to restrictions on crowd sizes in the city of brotherly love — this is the first time the game has been played on Army’s campus since 1943.
Kick off of the 121st Army-Navy Game is set for December 12th at 3:30 p.m. Eastern time on CBS.