Allen Dale June, one of the 29 original Navajo Code Talkers who encrypted American military communications during World War II using principles of indigenous language, died Wednesday night in Prescott, Arizona, at age 91.
The Code Talkers took part in every assault the Marines conducted in the Pacific from 1942 to 1945. They sent thousands of messages without error on Japanese troop movements, battlefield tactics and other communications critical to the war's ultimate outcome.
Several hundred Navajos served as Code Talkers during the war, but a group of 29 that included June developed the code based on their native language. Their role in the war wasn't declassified until 1968.