Local VFW Post remembers Pearl Harbor
By Sara Belsole
COLUMBUS, GA – It's been 71 years since the Japanese launched surprise air attacks on the United States at Pearl Harbor on December 7, 1941.
More than 2,000 American servicemen died during the bombing raid.
Today VFW Post 665 remembered Pearl Harbor with a memorial ceremony, complete with the color guard and reenactments of President Franklin D. Roosevelt's historical speeches.
“I have attended a few Pearl Harbor ceremonies and this was the most moving one I have ever attended. It brought back a lot of memories,” Retired First Sergeant Scott Miller says.
Miller served in both World War II and Korea. He wasn't old enough to serve until 1944, but says Pearl Harbor was a major motivation to fight.
“When Pearl Harbor happened, I remember the recruiting lines, people were just volunteering, lines after lines of people volunteering for service,” Miller says.
Local high school JROTC members were on hand at today for ceremonies like the color guard and remembrance table.
Robert Prater, from Warm Springs, reenacted FDR's famous “day of infamy” speech.
“I have enjoyed bringing back the history especially to the younger children.”
The younger generation of veterans say it's important that this history does not get lost.
“I am not a hero, I did my job, I lived. The hero is the guy who gave the ultimate sacrifice and paid the price for his country,” Joseph Jones, an Iraqi War veteran, says.
As time passes each year, veterans say the feel less and less Americans are stopping to remember events like Pear Harbor.
“It's not taught in schools. You ask a youngster about it today and they don't even know what you're talking about,” Miller says.
“You YouTube Honey Boo Boo, you get a million hits, you YouTube Army soldier returns home, you get maybe two or three,” Jones says.
The Chattahoochee Veterans council says it believes there is one Pearl Harbor survivor living in our area.