Thursday, December 07, 2006

65th Anniversary: Remember Pearl Harbor

Sixty-five years ago, we were a nation secure within our own borders, preparing for the holiday celebrations from coast to coast. A war waged in Europe, but it seemed very far away.

Just before 8 a.m. on Sunday morning, December 7, 1941, the Japanese bombed the naval base at Pearl Harbor - and America was changed forever. Suddenly plunged into a world war, Americans threw off their isolationist policy and charged into battle.

Today, we remember those who sacrificed their lives and those who fought valiantly at Pearl Harbor. Only a few veterans of this day remain - and they share their stories at the Pearl Harbor Survivors Project.

If you've ever talked to a Pearl Harbor veteran or visited the memorial in Hawaii, I'd love to hear about it.

12 comments:

  1. I've heard about Pearl Harbour but it's one of those things I plan to learn about in later years when my life is less hectic.

    I have a set of 6 original war books left to me by my grandad. I remember as a kid thinking, 'BORING!' when he went on about it, but now find those books interesting. Weird how perspectives change as we age, even weirder that he must have known I'd read them.

    :o)

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  2. Melissa, my dad (now deceased) was at Pearl Harbor on Dec. 7th. He was supposed to have breakfast with a buddy that morning on board the Arizona. However, the previous night, he'd gotten drunk at Keno Farms and had a hangover, so he stayed in bed and didn't go to breakfast. He was awakened by the sound of sirens, shouting, and people running, so he looked out the window. Pearl Harbor had been bombed. He had many other WWI stories from his time in Hawaii, and his adventures there left him a changed man (certainly not all for the good). I can tell you more sometime.

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  3. Betty, I'd love to hear more about your dad and his experiences. Have you ever thought of writing them down to keep them for future generations?

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  4. Can't say that I've met anyone, but Sean and I have seen lots of documentaries and at least one movie (not the one with Ben Affleck) about Dec 7.

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  5. My Dad was born this day, two years after Pearl Harbor.

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  6. Hi Melissa
    I left you a present on my blog, hope you have a great Christmas!!

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  7. I always thought it was weird it took the attack by the Japanese to bring the Americans into the war against Hitler. Not that war is something to be jumped into, God knows, and no reflection on society, but I always wondered you know?

    A dreadful day--you can't even imagine can you?

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  8. Toni - I think World War I really soured America against jumping into a world conflict again, and the whole isolationism policy didn't help. I agree - we should have acted soner, but I guess it's one of those cases where it's 20/20 hindsight. :-)

    I completely marvel at the will of the British people, taking on Hitler pretty much alone for awhile. The resilience of the British people is just amazing.

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  9. I understand the Survivors group will attend funeral services of other survivors, and that the ritual they have is quite touching. Although several of my relatives served, none were at Pearl Harbor. These were ordinary, and amazing times and men.

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  10. I went to Pearl Harbor in 02 - it's a very moving memorial, I'm glad we went. They show a very informative movie that brings tears to your eyes. I couldn't believe how many people were out there. It was outrageous, all the tourists. Did you know that oil from the ships, etc. deep in the sea still floats to the surface?

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  11. I've been to the Arizona and it is an incredibly moving experience. If you ever have a chance to go, I would recommend it. Very quiet, very touching.

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  12. I've talked with some of the men who were there. We cannot forget!

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