Somber trib­ute at Pearl Har­bor

New York Post - - NEWS - By AU­DREY McAVOY

Sur­vivors gath­ered Thurs­day at the site of the Ja­panese at­tack on Pearl Har­bor to re­mem­ber fel­low ser­vice­men killed in the early-morn­ing raid 76 years ago.

About 20 sur­vivors at­tended the event over­look­ing the har­bor and the USS Ari­zona Memo­rial. They were joined by sev­eral thou­sand Navy sailors, of­fi­cials and mem­bers of the pub­lic.

Gilbert Meyer, who lived through the 1941 Ja­panese bomb­ing, said he re­turned be­cause of his ship­mates from the USS Utah — and to pay his re­spects and say a prayer for them.

Meyer, 84, who lives near Ly­tle, Texas, was an 18-year-old fire­man first class on Dec. 7, 1941 when a tor­pedo hit the port side of the Utah.

He said he’s still alive be­cause he hap­pened to be on the ship’s star­board side.

“I think about my ship­mates and how they were killed. It re­minds me that we’re lucky we got off and we’ve made a good coun­try for them,” Meyer said.

Au­thor Steve Twomey de­liv­ered the cer­e­mony’s key­note ad­dress. Twomey wrote the book “Count­down to Pearl Har­bor,” which ex­am­ines the 12 days lead­ing up to the Dec. 7, 1941 at­tack.

Af­ter a moment of silence at 7:55 a.m., the same time that the at­tack be­gan on Dec. 7, 1941, four F-22 jets from the Hawaii Air Na­tional Guard flew over­head.

More than 2,300 ser­vice­men were killed in the as­sault. Nearly half were on the USS Ari­zona, which ex­ploded and sank af­ter it was hit by two bombs.

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