Friday, December 7, 2007

Lest We Forget

Usually my Friday's are dedicated to the ladies.
This friday, I am going to talk about something historical, that involved women as well. Even sounds like a woman.
Pearl Harbor.
Isn't that a pretty name?
On this date, in 1941, it wasn't so pretty.
350 Japanese aircraft in 2 aerial assault waves had the goal to destroy the Pacific Fleet stationed at Pearl Harbor, Hawaii.
2 battleships were sank, six more were damaged. The U.S.S. Arizona taking the major brunt. She is still below the water, and 945 of her crew stayed with her. It was deemed unsafe to pull them out.
3 cruisers were damaged.
2 destroyers were sank, one more was damaged.
1 "other" ship type was sank (minesweeper, I think)
three more were damaged.
188 aircraft were destroyed, that was every plane we had there. 155 of them were still on the ground.
The Navy lost 2008 men, 1,177 of them were from the battleship Arizona.
710 Navy men were wounded.
The Marines lost 109 men, with 69 wounded.
The Army/Air Corps lost 218 men, with 364 wounded.
That's 2,504 men lost.

And, civilians?
57 of them dead, including women and children. Children as young as 3 years old.
35 more injured.

It was, indeed, a day of infamy. One that time has "mellowed", and some people have forgotten, or choose not to think about because it did not "affect" them. I wonder, in 66 years, will people be saying that about the September 11 attacks?
There are still Pearl Harbor survivors alive. Not many. I read yesterday, that some of the Arizona survivors chose to be buried with their ship-mates when they passed away. They are allowed this honor, and their bodies, or ashes, sunk to return to their ship. I've personally been to the Arizona Memorial. I was very emotional, and quiet the whole time there. I could still feel the devastation. And looking at all those names, my heart sank to the depths of that cold water.

So, sixty six years ago today. This morning, as a matter of fact. Pearl Harbor.


Mimi said...

May their Memories be Eternal. It's amazing that it was so long ago, and yet so recent.

sybil law said...

Definitely before our time, and yet we all know it so well. It really isn't that hard to relate to, but maybe that is because of 9/11.
That's why it always surprises me to see old people (or anyone old enough to remember) driving Japanese cars. Really! Haha