Monday, December 07, 2009

My mother’s Pearl Harbor recollections

The Destroyer Shaw is hit by a Japanese bomb on December 7, 1941.

Today is the 68th anniversary of "The Day of Infamy” – the surprise attack on Pearl Harbor.

Mom was telling me this morning that she remembers the day as if it happened yesterday. She was 16 years old having just celebrated her birthday a few weeks before. She and my grandparents had just returned from church services and my grandfather turned on the radio and heard the horrible news. He was already upset that there was a war in Europe which began September 1, 1939 with Germany’s invasion of Poland. And now it looked like the United States was taking on two different enemies. He was a World War I vet and knew first hand the horrors of war having been seriously wounded in France.

In 1995, we toured Pearl Harbor including the USS Arizona Memorial.

It’s amazing how some events are permanently seared into our memory. For me, it’s the Kennedy Assassination, the Challenger explosion and September 11th.