Friday, December 7, 2007

December 7th

December 7, a date which will live in infamy.

On that day in 1941, Japanese naval aircraft flying off aircraft carriers bombed the U.S. fleet at Pearl Harbor in a surprise attack. They sank or damaged all the U.S. battleships in the Pacific. The sneak attack brought the U.S. into WW2, which changed the country, and the world, forever.

What the Japanese didn’t get at Pearl Harbor were any of the U.S. carriers, which were elsewhere. Perhaps unknown just then, carriers were the true behemoths of the oceans, and the Japanese lost the war on the first day by missing them. But it was a long and bloody road to Tokyo and Berlin from the debacle at Pearl Harbor.

My father and all of my uncles fought in WW2. One was a Marine radioman who fought in two island battles in the Pacific. One was a Marine Gunnery Officer on board a warship which participated in numerous combat operations. One was an Army officer in the Philippines engaged in mopping up scattered Japanese forces after the battle for Manila. One flew a B-25 in the North African campaign. Thankfully they all returned unscathed (except for, perhaps, horrible life-long nightmares). All have since departed except for one who lives in a nursing home in Colorado, cared for by his loving daughter.


Sunshine said...

Truly honorable and amazing accounting and remembering.

Rainmaker said...

Like your father - my grandfater and all three of his brothers fought in WWII, three of them in Europe and one in the Pacific. All came home safely and led long, incredible lives. My grandfater is now the only one left though - as his last remaining brother passed away this morning. I hadn't even made the connection between today though until I read your post. I thought about the day as I landed at the airport and noticed the flag at half staff - but didn't really mentally connect the dots until now.

Thanks for the post!

DawnB said...

thanks for the reminder Peter we have so much to be thankful for.

David said...

I have a revised respect for vets. I watched Home of the Brave last night. Nasty business, that war crap. Really messes with your head, if not your body.

Just12Finish said...

Heroes, all of them.