Meriden library to host traveling Iwo Jima museum

Meriden library to host traveling Iwo Jima museum

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MERIDEN  — The Meriden Public Library is hosting a traveling museum this weekend dedicated to commemorating the Battle of Iwo Jima.

The Iwo Jima/World War II Museum is scheduled to be at the library from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday.

The museum is a 23-foot trailer, the project of East Hartford couple Marianne Mihalyo and Gary Roy.

Mihalyo said Thursday that it’s the only self-contained traveling museum specifically dedicated to WWII.

The trailer is 6.5 feet high and 8.5 feet wide, with display cases of WWII artifacts on both sides, a library area and a TV and seating area. It’s handicapped accessible, with a ramp entrance and room for walkers and wheelchairs.

Mihalyo said it’s designed to resemble a Higgins boat, which brought soldiers from ships to the shore.

She and her husband were inspired to create the museum to carry on the legacy of the WWII generation after volunteering for 25 years with Iwo Jima survivors groups.

The museum began touring in 2017. Mihalyo said they take it around from May to November and keep it in climate controlled storage in the winter.

It’s also available to visit by appointment.

The visit coincides with a library display of Iwo Jima-related materials, on loan from the daughter of a local WWII veteran and Iwo Jima survivor, for the month of November.

The materials on display belonged to Raymond Mik, a Meriden native who was in the United States Marine Corps. He died in Sept. 2018 at age 97.

Judy Mik, his daughter, loaned the library a three-page handwritten accounts of his time in WWII.

Jerry Maust, a Meriden reference librarian, took an interest in her father, Mik said, who would only read books about WWII and Iwo Jima.
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