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A statue of Tojo the monkey was erected in Clonakilty, west Cork, where he and a US Air Force crew made an emergency landing in a war plane in 1943. Photo by: Herald Scotland

Tojo, the U.S. Army war time monkey, commemorated in Cork

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A statue of Tojo the monkey was erected in Clonakilty, west Cork, where he and a US Air Force crew made an emergency landing in a war plane in 1943. Photo by: Herald Scotland

An old American “war” monkey with a unique history was honored with a statue in Cork over the weekend.

TheJournal.ie reports that the monkey, named Tojo, wound up in Clonakilty, Cork on April 7, 1943, after an American World War II plane made a crash landing after straying off course from its Morocco to England route.

Tojo was part of the 10 member U.S. Air Force crew, all of whom survived and then spent three joyous days at the local O’Donovan’s Hotel with fascinated locals.

The plane then took off for England, but Tojo remained in Cork.  He eventually died and was buried in the hotel grounds with military honors and an Irish wake.

The quirky story remains part of local Clonakilty lore, and O’Donovan’s is still open for business. Last weekend the hotel paid tribute to its long-ago American wartime visitors by unveiling a bronze statue in their honor – and Tojo’s too.

Actors also recreated the exciting events of April 7, 1943.  Among those on hand for the celebrations was a member of the U.S. Defense Attaché from the American Embassy, and former Irish Army engineer private James Galvin, who laid the runway at White’s Marsh which allowed the plane to resume its journey to England.

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