MOBILE, Ala. (WKRG) — Tuesday marks 80 years since Japanese forces bombed Pearl Harbor. That attack pulled the United States into World War II. Here’s a look at how the tragedy was remembered onboard the USS Alabama.
The Mighty A isn’t just a WWII artifact, it’s almost a living embodiment of the greatest generation. Tom Bowser says his parents survived the Japanese bombing.
“It was very horrifying for them, my parents didn’t talk about it much but before my dad passed away he talked about it a little bit,” said Bowser.
As we mark 80 years from the Pearl Harbor attack, the biggest loss may be the dwindling number of World War II veterans who are still alive to this day. No veterans from that conflict were able to make it to this commemoration.
“We don’t want people to forget, especially our young children, today is about Pearl Harbor veterans but we want to keep all veterans and all people educated and informed,” said Deputy Executive Director for Battleship Memorial Park Ebb Counts.
Park officials read the names of the roughly 50 Alabamians killed in the attack. While the ceremony honors those who died, a number of people in attendance had family that survived Pearl Harbor, including Emily Ryan who said she took off work in the middle of the day to make it Tuesday afternoon.
“We don’t want to forget, we don’t want others to forget, it was a milestone and a lot of lives were lost that day,” said Ryan.
While many of the generations that fought World War II are gone, organizers say these events are needed to keep the legacy of their sacrifices alive.