An important part of history dear to New Mexico, the Navajo code talkers, might get their own museum. A new bill is making its way up the chain to get the funding for it.
The Navajo code talkers helped win World War II. Supporters of this bill say they’re finally getting the recognition they deserve.
“This facility, just imagine what we could do: reinstate hope in our community to know and be proud of who we are as Navajo, our language, to help this great country,” Navajo Nation President Jonathan Nez said.
The president of the Navajo Nation says a museum like this is a long time coming. Inside the museum, it would feature photos, videos and other memorabilia about the code talkers and their role in World War II.
Sen. John Pinto is sponsoring the bill. He’s asking for $1 million from the legislature to begin designing and constructing a museum dedicated to the Navajo code talkers and other Navajo military veterans. It would be built on Navajo land in the small town of Tse Bonito, which borders Arizona.
The Navajo code talkers used their language to send and receive messages from the front lines to command centers over the radio. It became known as an unbreakable code during World War II.
Sen. Pinto is a code talker himself. There were about 400 code talkers during the war. He’s one of eight surviving code talkers today.
The bill quickly passed the Senate Indian and Cultural Affairs Committee without any opposition.