The Japanese attacked Pearl Harbour on the morning of December 7, 1941,
2,4002 were killed that day and 1,282 wounded.
The attack by the Japanese was intended as a preventive action to keep the US Pacific Fleet from influencing the war the Empire of Japan was planning to wage in SE Asia againt Britain, the Netherlands and the US.
The attack consisted of two aerial attack waves totaling 353 aircraft, launched from six Japanese aircraft carriers.
Franklin Rosevelt declared War and in his famous speech he said "a day that will live in infamy.
My Father's ship was completely destroyed and he was thrown in the water, He later said that was what saved him, even though there was so much destruction all around, he survived and became "A Pearl Harbour Survivor." And, he also became one of the
wounded. Although, he would tell me, if I asked, that he was no hero and that the real heros were the ones who lost their lives that day.
He never spoke much about Pearl Harbour, but he was proud of his service to our country. When asked about the war, he would answer questions with simple answers,
never offering more than what was asked. I cannot, to this day, ever begin to imagine the horror and fear that he and so many lived through and witnessed.
I can't imagine how my Mother felt. There was no way to get word back to the states on whether or not he and many others were still alive. She waited for two weeks before she knew he was alive. She told me that she was working at a laundry and the doors were open because it was so hot inside. A young man from the post office ran up to her and told her that my Father was alive. The navy had gotten word to the local post office that he was alive and well. The news spread throughout their small town and
my Mother told me she fell to her knees and thanked God.
On Pearl Harbour Day, and everyday, my Father was a hero. He went on to be in many other World War II battles. As Chief Radio Officer, he was in high demand. He was a hard working, God loving person who dedicated his life to doing work for the Lord.
He never turned anyone in need away and he gave of himself in so many ways.
At the age of 80 he was stricken with a terrible disease that left him paralzyed from the chest down. Even during his most difficult days, he still sang praises to the Lord and read his bible faithfully. He was a man, that I hope all young men will be someday.
So, here's to all the WWII heros that sacrificed so much, yet remained so humble. And here's to those heros that made our country what it is today and for the soldiers who continue to serve and protect us all.
My Father will never be forgotten and I loved him so. Writing this post about him is definitely therapy for me and at the same time it allows me to pay tribute to him and others for their service to our country. Sadly, there are few WWII veterans still alive,
but they will always, always be remembered.
I did want to add that the little ticket stub you see underneath the ribbon on the letters was saved by my Mother for many years. It was the train ticket stub that brought him home for the first time after the Pearl Harbour Attack.~