Honoring Pearl Harbor’s 75th anniversary


By Harold Dorwin

Credit: Harold Dorwin (Smithsonian Institution)

Anela Chavez, Editor-in-chief

Hawaii schools in the war years had to teach students skills not needed before. One skill was how to properly store and handle gas masks. They feared the poison gas the Japanese could release. Even babies had to wear a mask, but their masks were like bags that had bunny-like ears on top and a window to look out of. The Daily Pinion once printed a list of instructions for students. It read:

  1. Always have your gas mask within reach.
  2. If you must keep moving about, wear your gas mask.
  3. Never allow your mask to become wet.
  4. At bedtime, keep the mask within reach.

This month, the Pearl Harbor Memorial site commemorated the 75th anniversary of  the Dec. 7, 1941, attack. Battleships like the USS Arizona still lie at the bottom of the ocean. There are also walls of names of the people who died that day. The memorial can be visited seven days a week.

“A date which will live in infamy.” These words have echoed throughout history ever since President Franklin D. Roosevelt addressed the nation the day after the bombing of Pearl Harbor. The Sunday of the bombing left Hawaii devastated and America rattled.

Thousands of  tin pins and buttons were distributed to remind Americans of the bombing. The pins featured red, white and blue stripes with the phrase “Remember Pearl Harbor.”

Much like Sept. 11, 2001, Dec. 7 will forever be marked as a tragic event but also as a day where Americans everywhere pay tribute to those who lost loved ones or their own lives.