The battleship Missouri, commissioned in 1944, participated in the World War II battles of Iwo Jima and Okinawa. The Japanese signed terms of surrender on the ship’s deck on Sept. 2, 1945, ending World War II.
During the Korean War, the Missouri shelled North Korean positions from 1950 to 1953.
In 1955, the Missouri was decommissioned, only to be retrofitted and recommissioned in 1986. After rejoining the fleet, the Missouri was based in Long Beach.
In January 1988, following a six-month deployment, the Missouri returned to Long Beach. Joe Kennedy’a aerial image above accompanied a short story that reported:
Hundreds of banner-carrying well-wishers greeted the battleship Missouri on Tuesday as it returned to its home port in Long Beach under blue skies after a six-month cruise in the northern Arabian Sea.
As the 887-foot, 58,000-ton ship steamed into the harbor, hundreds of family members gathered at Pier 6 broke out in cheers, waving signs with such salutations as "Welcome Home, Daddy."
In fact, 31 of the 66 officers and 1,538 enlisted men on board had become new fathers during the tour of duty. The men, whose wives and babies had been waiting at the pier for several hours, were scheduled to depart the ship first.
The Navy Band from San Diego and the Bellflower High School Band provided a musical homecoming for the "Mighty Mo." It was on the deck of the Missouri that the Japanese surrender was signed, bringing an official end to World War II.
The Missouri and six other ships forming a carrier battle group were sent to the Arabian Sea in July as part of a U.S. policy to bring stability to the Gulf of Oman, where a war between Iraq and Iran has affected Middle East oil shipping lanes. …
During the 1991 Persian Gulf War, the Missouri launched 28 Tomahawk cruise missiles and fired 783 rounds of 16-inch shells.
In 1992, the Missouri was again decommissioned. In 1998, the ship was moved to Pearl Harbor and opened as a museum.
Below I’ve added additional images of the Missouri from the Los Angeles Times archives.