* Sunday December 7th, 1941 *

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Model T Ford Forum: Forum 2010: * Sunday December 7th, 1941 *
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Harvey Decker / Monterey, Tennessee on Monday, December 06, 2010 - 02:24 pm:

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Harvey ...


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By DAREL J. LEIPOLD on Monday, December 06, 2010 - 07:22 pm:

How many of us remember when we first heard of the attack on Pearl Harbor? I was with my father when he was driving our 1937 Packard 110 up Snelling Ave. in St. Paul, MN on that day. He turned on the car radio in the afternoon and we heard the first announcement made over the local radio station, WCCO.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By curtis billups on Monday, December 06, 2010 - 07:31 pm:

I remember it well. I was at home in Pittsburgh and heard it on the radio. I was 14 at the time and made it into the army just before the end


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Dick Lodge - St Louis MO on Monday, December 06, 2010 - 08:19 pm:

I was exactly six weeks old that day, and don't remember anything. I probably ate and slept a lot.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Harold Schwendeman on Monday, December 06, 2010 - 09:26 pm:

Dick Lodge - I was 12 days old that day, so I don't remember it too well either, but it IS good to know that there's somebody on here that's a month older than I am,....ha,ha,.......harold


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Bob McDonald = Federa Way, Wa. on Monday, December 06, 2010 - 09:54 pm:

I was 7 and the family had packed a picnic lunch and were driving on the dirt back roads from Hollister Ca to Bakersfield Ca the road crossed
the stream at least 20 time on this road (or horse trail) and between the crossings my dad slamded on the breaks and we lisen to the radio reports and ate our lunch. We then drove to Hwy.
99 and headed north, picking up service men hitch hiking back to base. I believe that the 1938 dodge 4 door had at least 10 adults and two kids in it.
we drove to Moffet Navel Air Station in Sunnyvale Ca.dropping them off and then home to Hollister.
That was a day that I will never forget.
May this never happen again.

Bob


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Erich Bruckner, Vancouver, WA on Monday, December 06, 2010 - 10:02 pm:

Dear Dick and Harold, I was negative 14 years.

I am glad our fellow Americans met the challenges that nobody could yet fully imagine on that December day.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Gerald Cornelius on Monday, December 06, 2010 - 10:47 pm:

I was 6 years old and I remember listening to our battery operated radio that only operated for short times. I remember my dad yelling to the family to shut all the curtains because the Germans were going to bomb us! Guess he must have thought it was some kind of coordinated attack.
Was a lot of hysteria at the time that made me very scared at the time. Nobody knew what was happening.
Both of my older brothers served in WWII and I remember going to the movie theatre on Saturdays and seeing the Movietone News of the war (no TV in 1941).


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Norman T. Kling on Monday, December 06, 2010 - 11:09 pm:

I was almost 6. I know that all the adults crowded around the radio to hear President Roosevelt, but I didn't really understand what was going on. It would have been much scaryer to have been an adult when it happened. I do remember bomb drills at school and putting up dark shades on the house and I remember the air raid sirens. I also remember the buildings painted to look like trees and open spaces around the aircraft factories in Burbank and other areas around the LA area. I also remember the "barrage balloons" along the coast.

In those days people were more patriotic and they went all out to support the war effort. Everyone including civilians did their part by buying "war bonds and stamps", collecting cans and even toothpaste tubes (lead or some kind of metal in those days). We had uncles and cousins who enlisted in the military service. My dad was in the auxhillary police, My uncle was an air raid warden, and another uncle an auxhillary fireman. We moved in with my grandparents to save on gas. Dad and grandpa worked together and carpooled.

Another thing we did was raise our own food. We had "victory vegetable gardens" and dad raised rabbits, my uncle raised pidgeons and chickens for food. I don't think I've eaten rabbit or pidgeon since then!

Norm


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Steve Jelf, Parkerfield KS on Monday, December 06, 2010 - 11:24 pm:

I was six months old, so I learned about it later. But I do remember the big formations of planes that sometimes flew over the L.A. harbor area at the end of the war. I also recall being scared by the Axis. At the Pike (beachfront amusement area in Long Beach), next to the carousel was one of those throw-a-baseball-at-a-target booths. There was a huge cartoon of Hitler, Tojo, and Mussolini, with their open mouths being the targets. Riding that merry-go-round, every time I came around and faced those mean faces I thought they were pretty scary.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Aaron Griffey on Monday, December 06, 2010 - 11:31 pm:

I was a month and a half from being 5 years old but I remember it because our neighbor was said to be there. He was transferring to the South Pacific and had a lay-over in Honalulu.
As he was unarmed and not attached to a company there so he could do nothing to help.
He said a lot of guys around him thought it was Americans practicing flying around untill they noticed how the water tanks on the hills were being targeted.
I knew a guy in Oakland who seems to have vanished a few years ago who lived there at the time.
He said he and his wife were getting ready for a picnic and the Army trucks started bringing bodies to a mortuary accross the street from their house.
Having hauled about one hundred Pearle Harbor Survivers in the Vet's and July 4th parades I have heard many a story first hand of that horrible day.
Not too many of those guys left now.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Robbie Williams on Monday, December 06, 2010 - 11:42 pm:

I came along 20 years later but my best friend was in a Marine air unit in the Pacific. We spent a lot of time talking about "the war" and how it changed the world.

Are people less patriotic these days? Yes.
Part of the reason is that they get their information from television broadcasts that generally seek to sensationalize everything. Divisive commentary, hate talk, interviewing radicals, you name it. TV has taught an entire generation to believe anything, take sides and blame somebody. Our leaders operate in a "made for TV environment" and are always playing against the other side.

If the enemy set out to divide and conquer, they did a pretty good job of polarizing the american political scene with TV sets ---- Made in Japan no less.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By bill siebert on Tuesday, December 07, 2010 - 12:00 am:

I was in my 2nd year in college when it happened. That weekend my folks drove down to visit me for the day. When they got there I told them about Pearl Harbor and my father said, "I don't believe it. The Japanese are not a stupid people. They must know they cannot win a war with the US. The US can build ships much faster than they can sink them." Had the Japanese consulted my father before they attacked Pearl Harbor what happened to Hiroshima and Nakasaki would not have happened.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Steve Jelf, Parkerfield KS on Tuesday, December 07, 2010 - 12:12 am:

That reminds me that my grandfather, who died seven months before the attack (1865-1941), commented in the thirties that we'd wind up in a war with Japan. Some people saw it coming.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By bill siebert on Tuesday, December 07, 2010 - 12:21 am:

When I was in grade school and high school we saw what the Japanese were doing in China and Korea. We pretty much knew the Philipines and the pacific islands would be next.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Rob Patterson (Aust) on Tuesday, December 07, 2010 - 12:59 am:

Compared to you lot, I'm a youngster, born 20 years after the event. I'm not an American but I have been to Pearl Harbour 4 times and the Arizona Memorial twice. Three of my visits were while I was serving in the RAN. The last was just 3 years ago when I took my wife to see the memorial, a special place for all allied servicemen. She too is an ex service woman and seeing the wreck below us brought her...both of us, to tears.
There were just 3 places that had that effect on us while we were on our travels....Arizona Memorial, the spot where Admiral Nelson fell and NY's Ground Zero.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By John Leming on Tuesday, December 07, 2010 - 01:10 am:

I was at the Arizona memorial once - it is very sobering, but so is the cemetery on Oahu. We talk alot about the preservation of our cars - its interesting to see and hear about efforts for preservation of the Arizona. The oil still leaks from the bunkers today and I dont think there is a good plan yet for how to keep the arizona from falling in on herself and bursting those bunkers. Either way, any person who has not been there needs to go - it changes your outlook on the world and current events.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Dennis Halpin on Tuesday, December 07, 2010 - 06:04 am:


This is the original front page of the Honolulu Sunday Advertiser. It's hanging in the museum where I work.
The headline at the top says "Japanese May Strike Over Weekend". It's shame I has to shrink it to post it here because the date on it is November 30 1941


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Jim Weir on Tuesday, December 07, 2010 - 02:39 pm:

I was 12, and we had spent Sunday working on the new shop my dad was building. Went to the house to get something to eat at dark. Turned on the radio, only had radio since '37, and heard the news. Two weeks later we were jolted awake on my 13th birthday @ 4 Ayem by a torpedo blowing up as it hit the shore, followed by another blast that sunk the Union Oil Tanker Montebello off the coast at Cayucos.

There were soldiers marching around Union Oil's tank farm in San Luis Obispo, which could store some 5 million barrels of oil. Also around their port at Avila. The soldiers were equipped with wooden guns and some had BB guns.

They excavated the hillside above the port and painted some power poles in shiney black and put them quite visibly pointing towards the pier.
Twas a scary time in Central California.

Sincerely

Jim weir


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Ricks - Surf City on Tuesday, December 07, 2010 - 07:28 pm:

From an old bold pilot:

"The best Pearl Harbor story I saw today was from the Hutchinson News."

http://hutchnews.com/Todaystop/Remembering-Pearl-Harbor-in-Hawaii

rdr


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Wayne Rosenkrans on Tuesday, December 07, 2010 - 09:14 pm:

A close family friend was a Navy pilot flying Wildcats off of the Enterprise when they steamed into Pearl Harbor with Hornet just after the attack. He was astounded at how quickly they were able to turn both carriers around and get them back out to sea - deathly afraid there would be another wave of attackers that never came. He survived most of the major naval engagements and ended up flying Hellcats when the war ended. Listening to his Navy and my Dad's Air Corps stories while I was growing up was much more interesting than TV. They're both gone now.

For the past several years we have enjoyed the largest WWII re-enactment on the East coast, WWII days in Reading, PA. Centerpieces of the event are the 40 or so veterans who come to tell their stories, including Pearl Harbor survivors, Doolittle raid survivors, Enola Gay survivor (only one left), Dirty Dozen, etc. Each year there are fewer and fewer. This year I had a delightful old gent, survivor of the Chindits in China/Burma/India, and his wife in my Model A for the parade through downtown Reading. Later that night we marvelled at how the two of them could still "cut a rug" to the big band swing sounds.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Bill Dugger on Tuesday, December 07, 2010 - 09:41 pm:

I was about 7 but could not gather what had happened. We moved from Lindsay to Buena Park and then to Redondo Beach where Dad would drive to San Pedro and work on the ship yards. My mother and I and someone else was at the corner of Hollywood and Vine when it was announdce the war had ended in 1945. By Christmas(1945) we had moved to Mansfield, Missouri., where my Dad was from. We lived there till I went in to the Army. I ended up in Germany for 28 months as the war in Korea was almost over. While in Germany I worked on Heavy equipmnent, and after the hitch in the army spent the next 54 years in the Office Equipmnent business. Oh well it was war.
Good Luck to everyone and and Happy T'Ing, and the upcoming Holidays


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Dick Lodge - St Louis MO on Tuesday, December 07, 2010 - 09:56 pm:

My dad was a reservist called to active duty in the spring of 1941. On 7 December 1941, he was at Camp Davis, North Carolina (which explains my being born in North Carolina). He spent a year in Trinidad and then went to the Philippines. When my sister and I were old enough after the war, he taught us to play acey-deucey. He told us that it was a hugely popular game during World War II in the Pacific. He told us that, if they didn't have a board, chips and dice, they made do with a board drawn on a piece of paper, atabrine and aspirin tablets and sugar cubes with dots marked in ink. He also told us that he had been told that there was communication with some sailors on the Arizona who clearly weren't were not going to be saved. The doomed sailors said, "Don't worry about us. We've got a hot game of acey-deucey going. We'll be okay."


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Ricks - Surf City on Tuesday, December 07, 2010 - 10:37 pm:

Pearl Harboró7 December 1941.

Source: Hough, Frank O., Verle E. Ludwig and Henry I Shaw, Jr. Pearl Harbor to Guadalcanal vol.1 of History of U.S. Marine Corps Operations in World War II. (Washington: Government Printing Office, 1958): 70-75.

Perhaps no action in American military history has been so thoroughly documented, examined, and dissected as the Pearl Harbor attack. Investigation has followed investigation; a host of books have been written on the subject, all in an effort to pin down the responsibility in the welter of charge and countercharge. The issue of what individuals or set of circumstances, if any, should bear the blame for the success of the Japanese raid has not been, and may never be finally decided. On one point, however, there has been unanimous agreement--that the courage of the vast majority of defending troops was of a high order.

The first inkling of the Japanese attack came not from the air, but from the sea. At 0637 on 7 December, more than an hour before any enemy planes were sighted, an American patrol bomber and the destroyer [USS] Ward [DD-139] attacked and sank an unidentified submarine in the restricted waters close to the entrance to Pearl Harbor. This vessel was one of five Japanese two- man submarines which had the extremely risky mission of penetrating the Pacific Fleet's stronghold. The midgets were transported to the target on board large long-range submarines, part of an undersea scouting and screening force which had fanned out ahead of the enemy carriers. Not one of the midget raiders achieved any success; four were sunk and one ran aground.

The Japanese attack schedule allowed the Americans little time to evaluate the significance of the submarine sighting. The first enemy strike group was airborne and winging its way toward Oahu before the Ward fired its initial spread of depth charges. The Japanese carrier force had turned in the night and steamed full ahead for its target, launching the first plane at 0600 when the ships were approximately 200 miles north of Pearl Harbor. A second strike group took off at 0745 when the carriers had reached a position 30 miles closer to the American base. Although a radar set on the island picked up the approaching planes in time to give warning, the report of the sighting was believed an error and disregarded, and the Japanese fighters and bombers appeared unannounced over their objectives.

The enemy plan of attack was simple. Dive bombers and fighter planes would strafe and bomb the major Army and Navy airfields in an attempt to catch defending aircraft on the ground. Simultaneously, the battleships moored to pilings along the shore of Ford Island would be hit by high-and low-level bombing attacks. The shipping strike groups included large numbers of dive and horizontal bombers, since the Japanese anticipated that protective netting might prevent their lethal torpedo bombers from being fully effective. In all, 321 planes took part in the raid, while 39 fighters flew protective cover over the carriers to guard against a retaliatory attack that never materialized.

At 0755 the soft stillness of Sunday morning was broken by the screaming whine of dive bombers and the sharp chatter of machine guns. At half a dozen different bases around the island of Oahu Japanese planes signaled the outbreak of war with a torrent of sudden death. Patrol bombers were caught in the water at Naheohe Naval Air Stations, across the island from Honolulu; closely parked rows of planes, concentrated to protect them from sabotage, were transformed into smoking heaps of useless wreckage at the Army's Wheeler and Hickam Fields, the Marines' air base at Ewa, and the Navy's Ford Island air station. The attack on the airfields had barely started before the first bombs and torpedoes were loosed against the sitting targets of "battleship row." Within minutes most of the battleships at the Ford Island moorings had been hit by one or more torpedoes and bombs. If the Japanese had drawn off after the first fifteen minutes of their attacks, the damage done would have been terrific, but the enemy planes kept on strafing and bombing and the toll of ships, planes, and men soared.

The Americans did not take their beating lying down. The first scattered shots from sentries ashore and watch standers who manned antiaircraft guns on board ship flashed back at the enemy even before the bugles and boatswains' pipes sounded "Call to Arms" and "General Quarters." The ships of the Pacific Fleet were on partial alert even in port and most of the officers and men were on board. Crew members poured up the ladders and passages from their berthing compartments to battle stations. While damage control teams tried to put down fires and shore up weakened bulkheads, gun crews let loose everything they had against the oncoming planes. In many cases guns were fired from positions awash as ships settled to the bottom and crewmen were seared with flames from fuel and ammunition fires as they continued to serve their weapons even after receiving orders to abandon ship. On many vessels the first torpedoes and bombs trapped men below deck and snuffed out the lives of others before they were even aware that the attack was on.

The reaction to the Japanese raid was fully as rapid at shore bases as it was on board ship, but the men at the airfields and the navy yard had far less to fight with. There was no ready ammunition at any antiaircraft gun position on the island; muzzles impotently pointed skyward while trucks were hurried to munitions depots. Small arms were broken out of armories at every point under attack; individuals manned the machine guns of damaged aircraft. The rage to strike back at the Japanese was so strong that men even fired pistols at the enemy planes as they swooped low to strafe.

At Ewa every Marine plane was knocked out of action in the first attack. Two squadrons of Japanese fighters swept in from the northwest at 1,000 feet and dived down to rake the aircraft parked near the runways with machine-gun and cannon fire. Pilots and air crewmen ran to their planes in an attempt to get them into the air or drag them out of the line of fire, but the Japanese returned again and again to complete the job of destruction. When the enemy fighters drew off at about 0825 they left behind a field littered with burning and shot-up aircraft. The men of [Marine Aircraft Group] MAG-21 recovered quickly from their initial surprise and shock and fought back with what few rifles and machine guns they had. Salvageable guns were stripped from damaged planes and set up on hastily improvised mounts; one scout-bomber rear machine gun was manned to swell the volume of antiaircraft fire. Although the group commander, Lieutenant Colonel Claude A. Larkin, had been wounded almost as soon as he arrived at the field that morning, he continued to coordinate the efforts to meet further enemy attacks.

Two Japanese dive bombers streaked over the field from the direction of Pearl Harbor at 0835, dropping light fragmentation bombs and strafing the Marine gun positions. A few minutes after the bombers left, the first of a steady procession of enemy fighters attacked Ewa as the Japanese began assembling a cover force at nearby Barber's Point to protect the withdrawal of their strike groups. The Marine machine guns accounted for at least one of the enemy planes and claimed another probable. Two and three plane sections of fighters orbited over the field, and occasionally dived to strafe the gunners, until the last elements of the Japanese attack force headed out to sea around 0945.

Three of the Marine airmen were killed during the attacks, a fourth died of wound; 13 wounded men were treated in the group's aid station. Flames demolished 33 of the 47 planes at the field; all but two of the remainder suffered major damage. The sole bright note in the picture of destruction was the fact that 18 of [Marine Scout Bombing Squadron] VMSB-231's planes were on board the Lexington, scheduled for a fly-off to Midway, and thereby saved from the enemy guns.

Within the same half hour that witnessed the loss of Ewa's planes, the possibility of effective aerial resistance was canceled out by similar enemy attacks all over Oahu. Ford Island's seaplane ramps and runways were made a shambles of wrecked and burning aircraft in the opening stage of the Japanese assault. The Marines of the air station's guard detachment manned rifles and machine guns to beat off further enemy thrusts, but the dive bombers had done their job well. There was no need for them to return. The focus of all attacks became the larger ships in the harbor.

The raid drew automatic reactions from the few Marines in the navy yard who saw the first enemy planes diving on the ships. While the guard bugler broke the majority of the men of the barracks detachment and the 1st and 3d Defense Battalions out of their quarters, the early risers were already running for the armories and gun sheds. By 0801 when Colonel Pickett ordered the defense battalion machine-gun groups to man their weapons, eight of the guns had already been set up. More machine guns were hastily put in position and men were detailed to belt the ammunition needed to feed them, while rifle ammunition was issued to the hundreds of men assembled on the barracks' parade ground. Pickett ordered the 3-inch antiaircraft guns in the defense battalions' reserve supplies to be taken out of storage and emplaced on the parade. He dispatched trucks and working parties of the 2d Engineer Battalion to Lualualei, 27 miles up in the hills, to get the necessary 3-inch shells. The Marine engineers also sent their heavy earth- moving equipment to Hickam Field to help clear the runways.

Thirteen machine guns were in action by 0820 and the gunners had already accounted for their first enemy dive bomber. During the next hour and a half the fire of twenty-five more .30's and .50's was added to the yard's antiaircraft defenses, and two more planes, one claimed jointly with the ships, were shot down. The 3-inch guns were never able to get into action. The ammunition trucks did not return from the Lualualei depot until 1100, more than an hour after the last Japanese aircraft had headed back for their carriers. By that time the personnel of all Marine organizations in the navy yard area had been pooled to reinforce the guard and antiaircraft defense, to provide an infantry reserve, and to furnish the supporting transport and supply details needed to sustain them.

In the course of their attacks on battleship row and the ships in the navy yard's drydocks, the enemy planes had strafed and bombed the Marine barracks area, and nine men had been wounded. They were cared for in the dressing stations which Pickett had ordered set up at the beginning of the raid to accommodate the flow of wounded from the stricken ships in the harbor. Many of these casualties were members of the Marine ship detachments; 102 sea-going Marines had been killed during the raid, six later died of wounds, and 49 were wounded in action.

The enemy pilots had scored heavily: four battleships, one mine layer, and a target ship sunk; four battleships, three cruisers, three destroyers, and three auxiliaries damaged. Most of the damaged ships required extensive repairs. American plane losses were equally high: 188 aircraft totally destroyed and 31 more damaged. The Navy and Marine Corps had 2,086 officers and men killed, the Army 194, as a result of the attack; 1,109 men of all the services survived their wounds.

Balanced against the staggering American totals was a fantastically light tally sheet of Japanese losses. The enemy carriers recovered all but 29 of the planes they had sent out; ship losses amounted to five midget submarines; and less than a hundred men were killed.

Despite extensive search missions flown from Oahu and from the [USS] Enterprise [CV-6], which was less than 175 miles from port when the sneak attack occurred, the enemy striking force was able to withdraw undetected and unscathed. In one respect the Japanese were disappointed with the results of their raid; they had hoped to catch the Pacific Fleet's carriers berthed at Pearl Harbor. Fortunately, the urgent need for Marine planes to strengthen the outpost defenses had sent the [USS] Lexington [CV-2] and the Enterprise to sea on aircraft ferrying missions. The Enterprise was returning to Pearl on 7 December after having flown off [Marine Fighter Squadron] VMF-211's fighters to Wake, and the Lexington, enroute to Midway with VMSB-231's planes, turned back when news of the attack was received. Had either or both of the carriers been sunk or damaged at Pearl Harbor, the outlook for the first months of the war would have been even more dismal. The Japanese success had the effect of delaying the schedule of retaliatory attack and amphibious operations in the Central Pacific that had been outlined in [Navy Basic War Plan] Rainbow 5. A complete reevaluation of Pacific strategy was necessary.

From http://www.history.navy.mil/faqs/faq66-7.htm


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Andrew K. Deckman on Tuesday, December 07, 2010 - 11:52 pm:

I was -31 years old on that day. I was around for 911 and I remember feeling like someone kicked me in the stomach. So I wonder how it felt for the American people for Pearl Harbor. A sad day to say the least.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Dennis Halpin on Wednesday, December 08, 2010 - 12:08 am:

I'm a WW2 baby. Born less than a month after the end of the war. My dad was Navy Air (PBY's) and my mom ran the tool crib at Stewart Field, West Point, New York. My step dad was an Army MP in occupied Germany right at the end of the war.
I have a huge scrap book my mom kept. WW2 as told by the front page of the NY Times. I'd take it to the museum for display like I have the Nazi arm band and the copy of "Mein Kampf" my step dad brought back and the other things my (late) parents saved but it's just too fragile.
My Mrs. and I (both Vets), have the distinct pleasure and honor of serving in a military museum with the remaining members of "The Greatest Generation", an experience we wouldn't trade for anything.
Our little museum www.freedomisntfree.org isn't a "War" museum. It's a museum dedicated to the stories of those who go fight wars. It's comprised mostly of small, personal, artifacts from the Civil War to the present conflicts and run on a shoe string budget, by Vets, for Vets.
I'm one of the lucky ones, I can't "forget" Pearl Harbor, or Pork Chop Hill, or the 68 Tet, or the battle for Baghdad, I work with these moments in military history at least one day a week and I do my best to teach the younger kids what they don't learn about in school anymore.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By John Berch on Wednesday, December 08, 2010 - 01:46 am:

Thanks Harvey for remembering, and reminding everyone.

I'm to young to remember the day, but my dad was a young man of 19 that day. He and his older brother answered the call. My Dad didn't have to go. He was head of household. His Father was killed in a car accident and his older brother had already signed up. They could have both stayed home and used the farmer deferment. He signed up for the Marines as soon as his little brother turned 16 and could take care of the rest of the family. Dad fought in the Pacific and my uncle went to Germany. My grandma often told the story about a neighbor who had signed the farm over to their boy while he sacked groceries in the nearby town so the youngster wouldn't have to go during the Korean war. Grandma always said "I had two stars in my window". Dad never talked a lot about the war. He never had a bunch of medals. He carried a chunk of steel that entered under his arm pit and lodged in his chest. It stuck out and you could plainly see it. No purple heart, Hell, knowin' Dad he never told them about it. He said "My buddy got it in the same place about the size of a tobacco can. He hollered, I'm hit, and died instantly". Most of his conversations about the war were about interactions with his buddies. He talked mostly about the sorrow he felt about the starving children. He was a very compassionate caring person. He hated war and often spoke of "Man's inhumanity to man".


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By John Leming on Wednesday, December 08, 2010 - 11:42 am:

andrew, am I correct in figuring you are 100 years old?? If so - that is great! were you in the war?


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By John Leming on Wednesday, December 08, 2010 - 11:46 am:

Oh I see negative 31! my bad!


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Aaron Griffey on Wednesday, December 08, 2010 - 12:05 pm:

Last month in the Vet's Day parade in San Jose my passenger was a guy who was on the Arizona at the time of the Pearle Harbor attack.
I did not get to talk to him about it as his grand daughter and her parents were with him and I decided to leave well enough alone.
I would sure like to hear his story.
They said they were flying him back there for this Dec. 7th aniversary.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Aaron Griffey on Wednesday, December 08, 2010 - 12:07 pm:

Last month in the Vet's Day parade in San Jose my passenger was a guy who was on the Arizona at the time of the Pearle Harbor attack.
I did not get to talk to him about it as his grand daughter and her parents were with him and I decided to leave well enough alone.
I would sure like to hear his story.
They said they were flying him back there for this Dec. 7th aniversary.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Dennis Halpin on Wednesday, December 08, 2010 - 12:09 pm:

John, one of my step dad's obligations as an MP in Germany was to man the front gate of some military installation and shake down GI's trying to smuggle food and supplies off base to starving Germans. When he was off duty, he was smuggling food off base to feed a young German boy whose whole family dead.
3 decades after the war, that young German boy came to America to find my step dad. I'll never forget that reunion. My step dad had never talked about WW2 before that day. He brought my dad a hand made Bavarian Coo Coo clock. It doesn't work anymore but it's hanging on the wall to this day as testimony to what American GI's are really made of.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By John Stokes on Wednesday, December 08, 2010 - 11:12 pm:

The conditions on the day I visited the Arizona Memorial a few years ago were exactly how I imagined the weather conditions were on the morning on 7 Dec, 1941. Slightly overcast. Warm. Still. And deadly quiet. Standing over the remains of the ship, to this day the oil from the Arizona still quietly, slowly and calmly rises to the surface of the water, bringing emotions to reality. It is a powerful memorial.
John Stokes
New Zealand


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