It is the small simple things of life that bring us peace.

Monday, December 6, 2010

Pearl Harbor Day

Tomorrow is the 69th anniversary of the attack on Pearl Harbor.  You may think it strange that someone my age would bother to do a post on this subject.  But this event was made very real to me as a teenager.  You see, I had the hardest teacher for American history.  He had served in World War II and in Korea as a chaplain.  He was a tough teacher, but he was good.  And I know now that he saw right through me and knew my love of history in spite of the attitude I displayed.  But back to Pearl Harbor.

Among the many difficult assignments I had in this class was the one for Pearl Harbor.  We were to interview two people that were alive at the time of the attack, and were old enough at that time to remember the events of the day.  We were given a list of questions to ask.  Lucky for me both of my parents were alive at that time, my dad was 13 and my mother was 8.  The interviews proved to be an insight to me of a day in each of their lives on a Sunday in 1941.  My dad told of the disbelief of everyone that day, people just could not believe that something of that magnitude had happened.  My mother could still remember the expression on her father's face as the news came over the radio.  She remembered his face draining of all expression and his eyes growing wide.  We had been attacked!

But my history teacher also had another lesson for us.  He made certain that we knew how many lives were lost that day and the sacrifices that were made so that we could live free.  Thanks to that history teacher long ago I have never forgotten what happened on December 7, 1941. 

And on another note:  I have thought it very interesting that my mother slipped away on the night of December 7th two years ago.  She grew up during the Great Depression and World War II and the events of those years never left her.  She was frugal and resourceful, somewhat of an organized pack rat, and an early version of a true recycler!  She was a military wife, but even without that experience she was a true American who saw our country go through tough times and survive.

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