OHIO VALLEY — Unlike Sept. 11, 2001, many in the Ohio Valley are not old enough to remember Dec. 7, 1941, but for those who are, they have never forgotten where they were when learning of the attacks, or the impact that day had on their lives.
Just before 8 a.m. in Hawaii, the first of the Japanese bombers began to attack the United States Navy base in Pearl Harbor. The two-hour aerial raid destroyed or heavily damaged 21 ships and 320 aircraft, killing 2,390 people and wounding 1,178 others.
Word of the attack may not have spread as quickly that day in 1941 as it did in 2001, but none the less, the impact was immediate and far reaching.
The day after Pearl Harbor was bombed, President Franklin D. Roosevelt appeared before a joint session of Congress.
“Yesterday, Dec. 7, 1941, a date which will live in infamy,” he paused and then continued, “the United States of America was suddenly and deliberately attacked by naval and air forces of the Empire of Japan.”
Following those words, Congress passed a resolution declaring war on Japan. In the days that followed, the U.S. would enter the war on a second front, as Germany, an ally of Japan, declared war on the U.S.
Now, 75 years after the Japanese attacked Pearl Harbor, ceremonies are scheduled to be held in the Ohio Valley, across the nation and in Pearl Harbor, to remember that day and the lives lost in the attacks.
In Meigs County, Feeney Bennett American Legion Post 128 will hold a ceremony at the Middleport Levy at 8 a.m.
Across the river in Mason, the Stewart-Johnson V.F.W. Post 9926 of Mason and Smith-Capehart American Legion Post 140 of New Haven will hold a Pearl Harbor remembrance ceremony at noon. The service will be held on the levee at the Mason Park.
In Gallia County, VFW Post 4464 will hold a memorial service at Gallipolis City Park at 3:30 p.m. The service will include a wreath laying and a shooting salute, along with prayers and brief remarks by veterans in honor of the day.
All American Flags should be lowered to half-staff on that day in remembrance Post 9926 and Post 140 members reminded the public.