December 7th, 1941 Pearl Harbor attack 72nd anniversary commemoration activities

| December 7, 2013 | 0 Comments
Archive photo: American battleships hit by Japanese planes during their attack on Pearl Harbour, America - 07 Dec 1941...Manadatory Credit: Photo by Sipa Press / Rex Features (192790a)  PEARL HARBOR  American battleships hit by Japanese planes during their attack on Pearl Harbour, America - 07 Dec 194.

Photo by Sipa Press / Rex Features (192790a)
American battleships hit by Japanese planes during their attack on Pearl Harbour, America – 07 Dec 194.

National Park Service Public Affairs

PEARL HARBOR — Saturday, Dec. 7, a moment of silence will be observed, here, at 7:55 a.m., the exact moment the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor began 72 years ago.

A guided-missile destroyer will render honors to the USS Arizona and a flyover will be conducted.

In keeping with this year’s theme, “Sound the Alarm,” and to connect Pearl Harbor survivors across the U.S. with the commemoration ceremony taking place Saturday at Pearl Harbor, the National Park Service is partnering with Veterans United to host an interactive broadcast, via wireless streaming, with sites across the U.S. including the U.S. Navy Memorial Museum (Washington, DC); Great Lakes Naval Museum (Chicago, IL); Arizona State Capitol (Phoenix, AZ); and Rosie the Riveter National Historic Site (Oakland, CA).

The theme showcases the heroic actions of those who answered the call and examines the means of communication used to unify the nation.

Prior to the start of the ceremony, Pearl Harbor survivors and World War II veterans will be able to interact with one another, and those who are unable to attend the ceremony on Oahu will be able to view the event in their hometown as it takes place.

Highlights of the ceremony will include music by the Navy’s U.S. Pacific Fleet Band, morning colors, a Hawaiian blessing, a rifle salute by members of the Navy, wreath presentations, echo taps and recognition of the men and women who survived the attack of Dec. 7, 1941, and those who made the ultimate sacrifice for their country.

The ceremony is co-hosted by Paul DePrey, superintendent, National Park Service, World War II Valor in the Pacific National Monument, and Rear Adm. Richard Williams, commander, Navy Region Hawaii and Naval Surface Group Middle Pacific.

This year’s keynote speaker is Secretary Max Cleland of the American Battle Monuments Commission. A former Georgia senator and the youngest-ever administrator of Veterans Affairs, Cleland served in the Vietnam War as an Army battalion signal officer, charged with improving communications on the battlefield. In 1968, as a captain, Cleland was seriously wounded in combat and received the Bronze Star for meritorious service and the Silver Star for gallantry in action.

Adm. Harry Harris Jr., commander, U.S. Pacific Fleet, is scheduled to speak. Pacific Fleet maintains combat-ready and forward-deployed naval forces that consist of approximately 200 ships/submarines, 1,100 aircraft, and 140,000 Sailors and civilians. The fleet leads America’s rebalance to the Pacific.

Misinformation or no information at all was released to the public about who survived the 1941 attack. Many times, it took months for families to receive the devastating news that they had lost their loved ones.

How did the nation respond? Victory gardens were planted in people’s backyards, patriotic songs played on the radio 24/7, and thousands of young men, many of whom were under the legal age of 18, enlisted to fight in the name of freedom.

“Sound the Alarm” shows America’s commitment to unity and action in the face of the national threat.

The ceremony will take place on the back lawn of the Pearl Harbor Visitor Center at the World War II Valor in the Pacific National Monument, looking directly out to the USS Arizona Memorial, Saturday, Dec. 7, 7:45-9:30 a.m.

The commemoration is free of charge and open to the general public and seats are on a first-come, first-served basis.

The Visitor Center will open early at 6 a.m. Seating for the public will begin at 7:15 a.m.

The ceremony will conclude with a “Walk of Honor” by Pearl Harbor survivors and other World War II veterans through an honor cordon of military service members and National Park Service rangers and personnel.

Pearl Harbor Events, Dec. 7-8

•USS Arizona Memorial public tours will be operating on a special schedule Saturday, due to the morning ceremony. The first public tour will begin at 11:30 a.m. with the last tour beginning at 1:30 p.m.

•Hickam Field, Saturday, 7:55-9 a.m. The Air Force’s 15th Wing will host a remembrance ceremony at 7:55 a.m., Saturday, at the Atterbury Circle flagpole on Hickam Field to honor the 189 killed and 303 wounded during the attacks.

Attendees must be in place by 7:15 a.m. Free admission.

•USS Oklahoma Memorial Pearl Harbor Day Remembrance on Ford Island, Saturday, 1:30-2:30 p.m., in honor of those who served on the USS Oklahoma (BB-37) during the attack on Pearl Harbor.

The USS Oklahoma suffered the second greatest loss of life during the attack.

Free admission. Also, free shuttle to Ford Island every 15 minutes from 12:30 to 1:15 p.m. from the USS Bowfin Submarine Museum.

• The Aloha Chapter of the Marine Corps League and the Honolulu Council of the Navy League of the U.S. observe the 72nd anniversary of the Japanese attack at Ewa Marine Corps Air Station at Ewa Field Memorial, Saturday, 7:45-9:00 a.m. Free admission.

•Pearl Harbor Memorial Parade is from Fort DeRussy to Kapiolani Park, Saturday, 5-7 p.m. featuring Pearl Harbor survivors, military and government officials, bands and parade units from the U.S. mainland and Hawaii.

•Narrated historic Pearl Harbor boat tours by National Park Service rangers, Sunday, 2:15 and 2:45 p.m. Visit or call 954-8721.

Commemoration attendance

For more information about the Pearl Harbor Day’s 72nd anniversary commemoration ceremony and special events, visit

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Category: News, Observances

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