Sailor kissing woman in iconic V-J Day photo at Times Square dies at 95

| February 19, 2019

vj day kiss
George Mendonsa, the man in the photo of a sailor kissing a woman in New York City’s Times Square after World War II

Marina Pitofsky, USA TODAY
The man in the iconic photo of an exuberant Navy sailor kissing a woman in New York City’s Times Square at the end of World War II has died.

George Mendonsa, 95, had a seizure and fell in an assisted living facility in Middletown, Rhode Island, his daughter, Sharon Molleur, told the Providence Journal. He lived there with his wife of 70 years, Rita, and died Sunday, two days short of his 96th birthday.

The photo was taken Aug. 14, 1945, which is known as V-J Day, the day Japan officially surrendered to the United States in World War II. Published in Life magazine as “V-J Day in Times Square,” it came to represent how joyful Americans and people across the world felt at the end of the war, in which 406,000 Americans died and 671,000 were wounded, according to the U.S. Census Bureau. Other commemorations of V-J Day mark Sept. 2, 1945, the Japan formally surrendered to Allied forces.

When photographer Alfred Eisenstaedt snapped the picture in 1945, he did not document any information about the photo’s subjects, and their identities were a mystery for years.

Fair winds and following seas, Mr. Mendonsa. The rest of the article may be viewed here: USA Today

Category: Navy, Veterans Issues, We Remember

Comments (20)

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  1. Mason says:

    Fair winds and following seas Mr. Mendonsa.

    Some asshole vandalized the statue memorializing this kiss in Sarasota with “#MeToo”.

  2. 26Limabeans says:

    My uncle once told me it was him in the photo.
    I am shocked to realize it was not true.

  3. 5th/77th FA says:

    The kiss seen ’round the world. Takes a real sailor man to put a double lip lock hold on a nurse in public like that. Couldn’t get away with that type of assault these days, huh? Saw a blurb last year from the Savannah papers, Post Commander (?) at Ft Stewart was complaining about the girls in the St Paddy’s day parade were grabbing the soldiers and kissing them while they were marching by.

    Rest easy Mr. Mendonsa, you’ve earned it.

    Hope they catch the POS that vandalized the statue. Another example of the “it’s not just Confederate War Memorials we’re coming after” movement.

  4. AnotherPat says:

    Had a feeling this photo was going to be addressed in a different light in the media today.

    Read a similiar article published in 2016.

    And of course, the article is from the Washington Post…

    So sad.

    “Don’t Blame ‘MeToo’ For Ruining the Most Iconic Kiss In History. The Photo Was Never Romantic.”

    • 5th/77th FA says:

      OK, boys and girls, your old broke brain gunned bunnying wanna be a missile man again needs some help. I try to read all of the linky thingie things with each post. Don’t surf the papers. Obviously, I have hit my limit on “free” articles I can read. How do I by pass their prescription fees and see the linked articles? Help me Help me! Wapo and NY papers seem to be the worse, tho the linked article in the SC FGS read I could only see 2 more. Must be the new thing these days? You would think with all the pop up ads they’d have plenty of money.

      • AnotherPat says:


        Do you have Cookies enabled?

        Do you use GOOGLE Chrome?

        Do you clear your cache before reading any new articles?

        Were you able to read the Washington Post article?


        • 5th/77th FA says:



          I think so, it’s a chromebook flip top lap thingie with a blue dot surrounded by a green/yellow/red circle icony do hickey.

          clear cache????

          no on wapo



          ps…y’all can quit laughing at the old dawg anytime now. You may have to teach me how to use computers, but remember I taught y’all how to use a spoon…and a P-38….and changed your diapers!

          • AnotherPat says:

            5th: Please try this article. It is the 2016 article I rerefenced:

            NEW YORK STORIES: “How a Celebrated Image Marking V-J Day in Times Square Has Taken On a Sinister Shade”:


            • 5th/77th FA says:

              Tanks matey AP. This nydailynews came right on up. Lots more info for me to pour over. The girl’s story is very similar to ex mother-in-law’s escape from Eastern Europe before the nazis started murder on a grand scale.

              I know how to and have built many miles of cabling to make the innerwebz work. Operating computers themselves…meh..not so much.

              Oh, and the whole cookies thing? I pretty much like any flavor, especially chewy ones. Pnut butter, chocolate chip, lemon, ginger snaps, butter, snicker doodle, ect, ect,ect,ect. That cookie jar stays cleaned out.

              • AnotherPat says:

                The King of Battle has taken over Jeff’s place… Jeff, the King of Puns (Jeff, we miss you…hope all is well)

                Thank You for the smile, 5th…and I sometimes still use my P38!

      • gitarcarver says:

        Clean out your browser cache and cookies.

        The sites leave a cookie on your computer telling how many articles you have read and that you have reached the limit.

        Clearing the cache and the cookies stops that.

        I have come to like “Click and Clean” which is a free browser extension for Chrome and Firefox. You can set it to clean everything automatically when you close the browser. It also has a task bar button that when clicked, clears the data.

        Not sure how it works with cell phones or automated password managers, but it works great for me.

          • 5th/77th FA says:

            All righty then! Tanks muchly. The ‘weeds and ‘weedettes have come thru for the dinosaur. I dug around and found a history button and kept backing thru time frames till I hit 7 days clear. That got me the wapo article. I’ll check with my boy that set this thing up on the auto cleaner. I try not to mess with too much on the settings and such. Be done blowed something up, or got into a site that I don’t need/want to be in. To err is human; to really screw up, you need a computer.

            Laughing can continue now.

            • AnotherPat says:

              Hey, 5th…just thought of something…

              Since you now cleared your cookies and caches, perhaps your PC will run faster, which means for the upcoming WOT…😉


            • Ex-PH2 says:

              Also, 5th/77th, when you go to newspaper site, click on the “incognito” icon. Then it doesn’t pick up your browser.

              • 5th/77th FA says:

                Tanks Ex, I’m wading thru all of this. I was prolly the last person on earth to have a computer and mainly just used it to see pics of the Grands and lurk around here and there. The guys at work would laugh cause I avoided them like a plague. I did learn enough to get paid and take all of their training course feelz good stuff. Y’all don’t know how much I appreciate all the hints and info that has been passed out.

                I’ll be gunning come Friday. May be my last shot for awhile, ‘specially for a 3 pete shot. If I can pass the DOT Physical, they may let me go back to work. If not, then it’s a forced retirement from line construction. Everybody tells me to hang up my hooks, but hell, I like the work and the young’uns had trouble keeping up with me before. Now…not so much. Oh well, Thursdays are still for cooking and AnotherPat is helping you and the other boys and girls keep me in reading material.

                I will endeavor. I will persevere. Cause I am a mighty little man. Small but wiry as hell.

  5. Wilted Willy says:

    May God bless you and your family during this difficult time, Rest easy Sailor, you have earned your time in Valhalla!

  6. Sparks says:

    Rest in peace Mr. Mendonsa. God comfort your family.

  7. SK2Bob says:

    Dear old Mom was part of the NYC crowd that day, but not the lucky lady in the photo. She worked at the Bank of New York at the time and said everyone at the bank knew war with Germany was coming before we declared it because Hitler had been withdrawing German gold from the bank!