Crawls Backward (When Alarmed)

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Remember Pearl Harbor

After the rush-rush of my crash-learning of Honolulu (and getting my first good quality uke), the next day on Oahu was more touristy.

But none the less memorable. In fact it was quite unforgettable.

I visted the World War II Valor in The Pacific national monument at Pearl Harbor. Pearl Harbor, of course, is where the Imperial Japanese Navy carried out a secret air attack on the US Naval base there on December 7, 1941. The Japanese used 353 aircraft in the attack, which was launched in two waves from 6 aircraft carriers.

The attack sank four US Navy battleships and damaged four more. There were also three cruisers, three destroyers, and one minelayer sunk or destroyed, as well as 188 aircraft. There were a total 2,402 killed and 1,282 wounded.

Much has been written on the Pearl Harbor attack, and I am certainly in no position to expand on the written history. I simply wanted to share the few photos I took, and my experience there.

The centerpiece of the entire Memorial is the USS Arizona Memorial. The Arizona was a battleship that was sunk in the harbor, and 1,777 crew perished with the ship.

All of the names of the crew are inscribed on the memorial wall. It's a humbling experienced, and I feel fortunate to have been able to pay tribute to these brave men who died defending our country.

I wish I had brought flowers or something else to leave at the memorial. The inscription says it best:

"To the memory of the gallant men here entombed and their shipmates who gave their lives in action on December 7, 1941 on the U.S.S. Arizona."

This is where they died. And this is where they lie buried.

And in perhaps the ultimate tribute, many of the 83 survivors have requested that upon their own death, that they be cremated and their ashes be laid to rest with their shipmates here.

The memorial is directly over the ship, and a diagram shows the location of the memorial in relation to the ship.

Several parts of the ship, including the remains of the stacks, are visible.

The white markers indicate the location of the other ships in the harbor where they were attacked.

There were thousands of gallons of fuel oil on board the ship, and it continues to slowly leak out over time. It's expected the leaks will continue for another 20 to 30 years. The oil is visible on the surface of the water.


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