Remembrance Day

I had just finished the earlier write, one that started easily but that was swiftly changed with a call from mom. I knew my concentration would be fully derailed but I took the call anyway. Mom is eighty-five, I know how blessed I am that I still have her in my life so I take her calls gladly. Then I sit here and try to get that train of thought back on track.

After it was written, posted and I had poured the last cup of coffee from the pot, I happened to notice something on my calendar. (A calendar always open before me but not always fully seen) The notation was today is Pearl Harbor Remembrance Day. 

So what is this all about? Each year in the United States, National Pearl Harbor Remembrance Day honors all those who lost their lives when Japan attacked Pearl Harbor on December 7, 1941. More than 3,500 Americans lost their lives or were wounded on that solemn day. Thank you google. You can find information about that day here:

While apparently not verified, Isoroku Yamamoto’s quote of having awakened a sleeping giant still is often repeated about this battle. 

But why remember after seventy-nine years? What importance does it hold now?Imagine with me if you will, people going about their day to day, early morning activities. They are at work or going. They are military going about their duties. Some are enjoying breakfast and possibly that morning paper. Ordinary, every day activities. Suspecting nothing, but that was the plan. Out of nowhere came the unseen enemy. An attack that cost thousands of lives and many thousand injuries. Ships sank and aircraft destroyed. As plane after plane flew in with their bombs and weaponry of destruction. Imagine the panic as people fled for their lives or the determination as the military personnel ran for their stations. Many lives cut down in route. The air filled with the sounds of war. Sounds that were never expected, never wanted on this soil. An act, that drew this country into war.

 Why remember? It was horrendous, it was ugly, it was something one would prefer to forget and bury in the past. But we must remember. It is important that we acknowledge our past no matter how ugly. Pearl Harbor was an attack on the U.S. and her people by another country. It may have been meant to be a warning. It may have been, as the above article said a preventative measure. But it woke that giant. 

Has that giant, returned to sleep? Do we prefer to dream the days away, forgetting who we are and how far we have come? War is not pretty, but sadly it happens. Does that make it right or wrong or one of those, well it depends, things?  Do we seek to forget? I would hope not because when one forgets, it opens the door for history to repeat past events. I do not see statues, or memorials, or road names as ways to glorify wrongs, but ways to remember. But I wander. 

Pearl Harbor Remembrance Day, a moment set aside to remember all of those lost to this battle. A day set aside to remember those injured. A day set aside, so those today can take a moment to remember as “A day that will live in infamy” as said by then President, Franklin D Roosevelt. His entire speech can be found here: Thank you Library of Congress. 

Often, we remember an injury done to us personally. We remember that car accident, breaking a bone, finding that shard of broken glass with a bare foot. If the injury is severe enough, we remember. Pearl Harbor was not an accident. But it left a gaping wound. It has been said that time heals all wounds, many times though there are scars. Those are our reminders.

Pearl Harbor has its reminders, its memorials,  Pearl Harbor – The official website for Pearl Harbor Historic Sites

Memorials many may never get to physically visit. But we must remember. We must not allow ourselves to forget this day in our history and how it changed everything. If we forget, history is destined to repeat. If we forget the moment, we forget all of the lives lost that day. We forget all of the lives changed that day. We forget a moment in time, that brought us out of a self-contained, attempt at isolation from a war that had begun on September first of 1939 and into the battle.

And that would be a great wrong done them.

About rebecca s revels

A writer, a photographer, a cancer survivor. An adventurer of the mild kind, a lover of the simple pleasures such as long walks and chocolate. A Christian unashamed of my faith and a friend who is dependable and will encourage readily. Author of three self published books with more waiting to find their way to paper. An advocate of good things, a fighter against wrongs.
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