Navajo Code Talker Bahe Ketchum
SANTA FE — Gov. Susana Martinez issued an executive order Friday for flags to be flown at half-staff from sunrise to sunset today in honor and mourning of Navajo Code Talker Bahe Ketchum who passed away June 8, 2015 at the age of 96.
EXECUTIVE ORDER 2015-010
FLAGS FLOWN AT HALF-STAFF IN HONOR AND MOURNING OF NAVAJO CODE TALKER BAHE KETCHUM
WHEREAS, Bahe Ketchum, one of the last surviving Navajo Code Talkers, passed away on June 8, 2015 at the age of 96;
WHEREAS, Ketchum served the Navajo Nation and the United States in the U.S. Marine Corps during World War II, serving with the 6th Marine Division from 1944 to 1946 and reached the rank of private first class;
WHEREAS, Ketchum served in the Rukyu Islands, Guam, and China and saw combat in the Battles of Guadalcanal, Okinawa, and Tsingtao;
WHEREAS, Ketchum was one of 400 Navajo Code Talkers who used their native language to create a military code, which proved to be instrumental to The Allies’ success throughout World War II and remains the only unbroken spoken military code;
WHEREAS, Ketchum received The Congressional Silver Medal for his service as a Navajo Code Talker;
WHEREAS, the service of Bahe Ketchum and the Navajo Code Talkers changed the course of history and will never be forgotten;
WHEREAS, Ketchum returned from the Marine Corps, and served his community and the Navajo Nation as Secretary-Treasurer and Vice President of the Navajo Mountain Chapter; and,
WHEREAS, Ketchum is survived by his 12 children, 29 grandchildren, and 18 great-grandchildren;
NOW, THEREFORE, I, Susana Martinez, Governor of the State of New Mexico, by virtue of the authority vested in me by the Constitution and the Laws of the State of New Mexico, do hereby order that all flags be flown at half-staff from sunrise to sunset on Saturday, June 13, 2015, the day Bahe Ketchum is laid to rest. The thoughts and prayers of the people of New Mexico go out to his family, along with heartfelt thanks for his service.
SIGNED AT THE EXECUTIVE OFFICE THIS 12th DAY OF JUNE 2015.
WITNESS MY HAND AND THE GREAT SEAL OF THE STATE OF NEW MEXICO.
DIANNA J. DURAN
SECRETARY OF STATE