Pearl Harbor survivors pay respects on 76th anniversary

"In the words of President Franklin Delano Roosevelt, the day December 7, 1941 is a day that will live in infamy", Pasiak said.

"Today our entire nation pauses to remember Pearl Harbor and the fearless warriors who on that day stood tall and fought for America", he said.

Walter Pasiak of Scranton, the last known living local veteran of the attack on Pearl Harbor, recalled seeing planes in the sky and thinking at first that they were American aircraft.

About 20 survivors of the attack on Pearl Harbor gathered Thursday to remember those killed 76 years ago in the Japanese aerial assault.

Ganitch later broke out into song, delivering a rendition of "Remember Pearl Harbor". More than 2,400 Americans died in the attack, including civilians, and another 1,000 people were wounded.

"I wish sometimes that I could live down here", said retired Senior Master Sgt. Harry Allen about the monument.

Jim Snow and Louis Thomas also took the time to remember their fathers who fought in World War II.

"This event is very special and it's the kind of event that you want to participate in whenever possible because it's one of the very few programs to honor veterans that we have in Lafayette", Rodney Hamilton, Purple Heart Recipient.

"Our role in the National Park Service is to preserve and illustrate our nation's history, so that everyone can learn our shared stories and ask themselves, 'So what do these events of the past have to do with me today in my times?' " said Michael Creasey, National Parks of Boston general superintendent and host of the commemorative service.

About 2,000 officials, military members and others are attending the ceremony.

"They fought. They bled".

The ceremony ended with a rifle salute performed by a U.S. Marine Corps rifle detail, the playing of Echo Taps by the U.S. Pacific Fleet Band, and a vintage 1940s Globe Swift plane fly-by.

Now he leads a pledge to the country he served so well, and in front of a Pearl Harbor memorial bearing his name, repeats a quote we know so well.

Almost half of the American casualties that morning were aboard the U.S.S. Arizona, Jindrich said.

"We are building up the military beyond what you ever thought". Roosevelt's Executive Order 9066 paved the way for more than 110,000 of them to be forced from their homes and imprisoned behind barbed wire during the war. We can't forget that.

  • Jacqueline Ellis