Window Rock, Ariz.-It is with great sadness that the Office of the President and Vice President learned about the passing of Navajo Code Talker, Private Joe Hosteen Kellwood on Monday, Sep. 5.
The executive offices stated in a news release that Kellwood, 95, was a Navajo Code Talker who served in World War II. He was trained at Navajo Code Talker’s School at Camp Elliott in San Diego, Ca. Code Talker Kellwood was the recipient of the Congressional Silver Medal.
“Our Navajo Code talkers are iconic and Private Joe Hosteen Kellwood was no exception,” President Russell Begaye said. “He, along with our other revered code talkers, was able to save our nation, our freedom and our lives by using the sacred Dine’bi’zaad. For this, he will always be remembered and honored.”.
Vice President Jonathan Nez said the Navajo Code Talkers are a vital piece in the histories of both the United States and Native Americans. Beyond bullets and bombs, these young Marines were able to save the Nation translating military code into the Navajo language.
“In our administration, both President Begaye and I have been able to work for the betterment of veteran’s services that are provided across our Nation,” Nez said. “The veteran’s pillar in our administration is founded in historical service of our Navajo Code Talkers. They deserve much more credit than they are given nationally. But here on the Navajo Nation, we hold them close and dearly. It’s a tragedy for us to lose even one.”
OPVP is calling upon the entire Navajo Nation to come together in prayer in honor of the service of Code Talker Kellwood. The Office sends condolences to Kellwood’s family and those he left behind.