Seventy years after the devastating attack on Pearl Harbor fully brought the United States into World War II, we continue to remember our fallen heroes, surviving veterans and the families who felt the firsthand impact of Dec. 7, 1941. The Japanese surprise strike claimed more than 2,400 American lives that morning and left more than 1,200 wounded. As President Franklin D. Roosevelt so famously said, it was indeed a “date which will live in infamy.”
The passage of time has left us with fewer surviving Pearl Harbor veterans. They are rightfully a proud group who will gather today to mourn their comrades, celebrate their camaraderie and remember the victory that was ultimately theirs. And ours.
As we salute our courageous soldiers today, I am pleased to share this story about a Pearl Harbor veteran from Plainview, Texas, who was granted his final wish this week when a portion of his ashes were laid to rest in the waters he helped defend. As always, God bless our troops, past and present.