Press Releases

Operation Santa Brings Holiday Cheer Abroad the Mighty Mo

2nd Annual Overnight Stay for Keiki of Military Families

Pearl Harbor, HI – (December 3, 2018) For the second year in a row, the Battleship Missouri Memorial hosted “Operation Santa,” an overnight encampment for keiki of deployed and active-duty military families stationed at Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam. Forty children ages 10-16 years old were welcomed onboard the Mighty Mo from Saturday, December 1 at 4 p.m. to Sunday, December 2 at 8:30 a.m. for Operation Santa 2018.

“Christmas is a special time in every child’s life and should be spent with loved ones to share in the spirit of happiness,” said Mike Carr, president and CEO of the USS Missouri Memorial Association, caretaker of the Battleship Missouri Memorial. “For our military families, we understand this may be a difficult time often with a parent deployed overseas.”

The evening kicked off with an interactive tour of the USS Missouri followed by a Christmas dinner on the ship’s mess deck. Each keiki had the opportunity to craft a special video message to their family. The evening ended with a movie showing and a game of “Battleship.” The overnight stay ended with an early morning breakfast, followed by a surprise visit from Santa with gifts for every attending child.

“To put a big smile on every child’s face meant we made a positive impact and lasting impression on each and every one of them this Christmas season,” said Dan Parsons, Director of Education at the USS Missouri Memorial Association.

Operation Santa 2018 was made possible with the support of the United Service Organization (USO)-Hawaii, Military and Family Support Center at Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam, Historic Naval Ship Association, Fleet Reserve Association-Branch 46, Green Tree Café, Roberts Hawaii, Navy League, Coca-Cola Hawaii, Cutter Ford, Magic Memories, Aloha Signs & Graphics, Crestline, Ruby Tuesday-Hawaii, Walmart-Hawaii, Battleshop, ALSCO Hawaii, Haili Moe Studio, Photo Vision, Inc., and Home Depot.

About the Battleship Missouri Memorial

Since opening in January 1999, the Battleship Missouri Memorial has attracted more than 8-million visitors from around the world with a fascinating tour experience showcasing the USS Missouri’s unique place in history. Located a mere ship’s length from the USS Arizona Memorial, the Mighty Mo completes a historical visitor experience that begins with the “day of infamy” and sinking of the USS Arizona in Pearl Harbor on December 7, 1941 and ends with Japan’s formal surrender aboard the USS Missouri in Tokyo Bay on September 2, 1945.

The USS Missouri had an astounding career over five decades and three wars – World War II, the Korean War, and Desert Storm – after which it was decommissioned and donated to the USS Missouri Memorial Association, Inc., a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization. The Association operates the Battleship Missouri Memorial as a historic attraction and oversees her care and preservation with the support of visitors, memberships, grants, and donations.

The Battleship Missouri Memorial is open daily from 8:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. General admission, which includes choice of an optional tour, is $29 per adult and $13 per child (4-12). Military, kama‘aina (local resident) and school group pricing is available. For information or reservations, call (toll-free) 1-877-644-4896 or visit

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Please credit images to the Battleship Missouri Memorial and Terry Takaki

Caption: Keiki of deployed and active-duty military families stationed at Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam arrive at the Battleship Missouri Memorial for “Operation Santa.”

Caption: Keiki take part in various activities during their overnight stay on the Battleship Missouri Memorial.

Caption: Second annual overnight stay aboard the Mighty Mo.

Media Contact:

Shere’e Quitevis

(808) 539- 3434

Jaclyn Hawse

(808) 455-1600 x246