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The Kiss That Celebrates The End of World War 2

The kiss that celebrates the end of World War 2 is now a giant statue in San Diego’s waterfront. The iconic black and white photograph taken by Alfred Eisenstaedt in New York City’s Times Square comes to life in a 20-foot bronze sculpture, aptly known as “Unconditional Surrender”. It’s designed by Seward Johnson.

Also known as “Victory Kiss”, the statue stands right next to the USS Midway Ship turned into a museum. You can’t miss it—and don’t miss it.

The “Kissing Statue” is that of a nurse and a sailor.

The Kiss That Celebrates The End of World War 2

Both have never met or known each other when the kiss happened.

The Kiss That Celebrates The End of World War 2

Or even after that.

The Kiss That Celebrates The End of World War 2

The Kiss That Celebrates The End of World War 2

With all the victory celebrations around Times Square, the photographer forgot to ask their names.

The Kiss That Celebrates The End of World War 2

Life Magazine was the first to publish the photo, along with other photos of celebrations of Victory over Japan.

Save The Kiss Statue San Diego California 7

Though captured at the perfect moment, the “couple’s” faces were not clearly visible.

Unconditional Surrender by Steward Johnson San Diego

Thus, the identity of the kissers were a mystery that lasted many years to solve.

Unconditional Surrender by Steward Johnson San Diego

Unconditional Surrender by Steward Johnson at San Diego Ports

In the late 1970’s the first woman came out to claim to be the nurse in the photo.

Unconditional Surrender by Steward Johnson San Diego

Then, there were two more women—each had a story to tell.

Unconditional Surrender by Steward Johnson San Diego

There were 11 men who claimed to be the sailor.

Unconditional Surrender by Steward Johnson San Diego

They, too, have their own account of how the photograph was taken.

Nurse and Sailor Kiss at New York Times square

Then, on August 3, 2008 (63 years after the photo was taken) the long search for the sailor’s identity ended.

Nurse and Sailor Kiss at New York Times square

Glen McDuffie was recognized as “The Sailor” on his 81st birthday.

Nurse and Sailor Kiss at New York Times square

As to the real identity of the nurse in the statue?

Victory Kiss San Diego

No one is certain yet.

Victory Kiss San Diego

The first woman, Edith Shain, who claimed to be the nurse died in 2010.

Victory Kiss San Diego

Her claim was rebuffed by two authors who said that her height is insufficient in comparison to the men who claimed to be the sailor.

And so the search for the real nurse continues.


Reference: Wikipedia

 

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One Response to “The Kiss That Celebrates The End of World War 2”

  1. Suzanne R.
    September 22, 2014 at 10:13 AM #

    beautifyul shots and story. wow!

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