We observe National Pearl Harbor Remembrance Day on December 7 to honor the 2,403 Americans who were killed in the Japanese surprise attack on Pearl Harbor in Hawaii in 1941. It led to the United States declaring war on Japan the next day and entering World War II, as Wikipedia reminds us.
We all have our own memories of Pearl Harbor. We have visited the Pearl Harbor National Memorial, including one trip with our son. Looking into the water from the monument, it is a sobering experience. Fuel continues to leak from the USS Arizona’s wreckage.
In Grass Valley, some of our locals are Pearl Harbor survivors, including retired Lt. Cmdr. Louis A. Conter, now 99 years old. We have met Louis and heard him speak at the Vet’s Hall in Grass Valley.
Other locals also have memorabilia to share. “These are from my dad’s photo album just before the attack,” regular reader Chip Wilder said in an email to me this week. “He was going to school at Pearl and was late coming on base that morning because they went to church off base. He was living with a couple others and drove onto the base just before they closed the gate during the attack.” (All photos courtesy of Chip Wilder).
We must never forget our history.