He laid a wreath at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier, saying that for families of the fallen, "every day is Memorial Day."
Pence offered gratitude from President Donald Trump, who was on a diplomatic trip to Japan.
"To all of you here, and those looking on from afar, especially to the families of our fallen, we extend our deepest sympathies," Pence said. "And we also bring the deepest respect and gratitude of the 45th president of the United States of America, President Donald Trump."
The president and first lady Melania Trump planned to visit U.S. troops at JS Kaga and the USS Wasp in Japan on Tuesday morning.
They were scheduled to speak aboard the USS Wasp at 10 p.m. EDT Monday.