Navajo Code Talkers dwindling in numbers
Of the more than 400 Navajo Nation men who served as Code Talkers during World War II, fewer than 100 remain and their ranks are quickly dwindling.

Four Code Talkers have died since May. One researcher has located only 48 living veterans who used the Navajo language to develop and transmit unbreakable codes.

"That's the only one that's still around," Joe Kellwood, 87, told The Arizona Republic after looking at photos of his fellow Navajo soldiers. "Old Joe Kellwood."

Laura Tohe, a professor at Arizona State University, is the daughter of a Code Talker. She said her father rarely discussed his service.

"I think he didn't want to talk about it because it was such a horrendous experience growing up in the war. . . . I didn't even know what the Code Talkers were," Tole told the paper. She is interviewing the living Code Talkers for an upcoming book.

Get the Story:
Code Talkers speaking out to teach history of messaging system (The Arizona Republic 8/17)

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