22 January, 2011

Pearl Harbor

Finally. It's only taken about 9 months for me to get there. Epic fail on my part. 

I was really glad when Jessica called this morning to tell me she had, indeed, gotten tickets to see the USS Arizona Memorial! =) Even better, she got tickets for the 0915 tour giving me a few extra minutes to change clothes twice finish getting ready and still have plenty of travel time. Much like in the movie O Brother Where Art Thou? I feel like I live in a "geographical oddity." Except I live about 30 minutes away from everywhere on the island instead of 2 weeks. =P Well, it does take quite a bit longer to get to Honolulu, but that's mostly due to traffic. But I digress.

After being worried that Sheila (what we affectionately call our GPS) would take me the wrong way, making a U-Turn and driving through three parking lots, I finally made it to Pearl Harbor! Once there with tickets in hand, we were ushered into a small theater to watch a video on the attack on Pearl Harbor. I didn't need this, but I did actually enjoy it. After that, we boarded a boat that took us here:

The Arizona Memorial from the boat.

Once there, we went inside...



The memorial sits on top of the Arizona and they have windows cut out so you can see down below.


My husband isn't Navy or I would tell you what these things are. =P



Adding a flag to the pole.

Best picture from the whole tour.
{Taken before they added the 2nd flag.}

All the men who never made it out of the ship.
Very humbling and very sad.
So many men... All like my husband...

These are the men who, after their death, were put back in the Arizona with their shipmates.
I think that is so...amazing. They wanted to rest with them.


More of the ship.


Oil that still leaks out of the ship on a daily basis.
I could even see black splotches on the surface. 
It was unreal.

Jessica!

Leaving the memorial.

I *heart* pictures of palm trees.

I love this! It says:

"Dear Lord/ Lest I continue/ My complacent way/ Help me to remember
Somehow out there/ A man died for me today./ As long as there be war
I then must/ Ask and answer/ Am I worth dying for?"
Poem Eleanor Roosevelt kept in her wallet during World War II

It doesn't surprise me that she kept that with her. Though, it does beg the question: What if everyone thought and felt that way? How would this country - this world - be different if we all remembered that our freedoms come at a price - daily. I can only imagine.

Even though the tour was short (entirely too short in my opinion), it definitely left me in awe and so thankful. No sobbing occurred, but a few tears showed up. I expected this. Those men never had a chance. Their lives were cut so short. Many of them were just like my husband - serving their country and glad to do so. 

"I will never forget." ~ Radioman Third Class Warren Verhoff

9 comments:

McDancer said...

Thank you for sharing these amazing pictures. I hope one day to make it there myself.
My husband's grandfather was serving in Hawaii when the attack happened, so it holds a little extra meaning, but I think any American feels an emotional connection.

Brandi said...

In 08 I finally made the big journey to Hawaii, going to the Arizona was a huge journey for my Mom and I. That ship, that day almost ended my families blood lines. Of my great grandmother's children, two were aboard that ship (one uncle was in the navy the other was a Marine) ... my grandfather was only 16 the day he lost both his brothers on there and then he himself joined after lying about his age.

It was humbling to see two men, two names on a wall that match your own.

I'm glad you were finally able to get out there. :)

Amanda said...

Thank you for sharing. The pictures brought a few tears as well for me very humbling.

ae said...

Great pictures! I definitely want to make a trip there myself one day. The history buff in me pretty much demands it;)

Crazy Shenanigans-JMO said...

I still can never wrap my mind around the fact that the ship is still under the water and that the oil still leaks out! The photos you took are great!

Sarah said...

TeVet68,

I'm deleting your comment because it looks like the spam I receive all the time. If you'd like to leave a separate, non-spam comment feel free to do so.

Ashley said...

Thank you for sharing those pictures. It is on my bucket list to one day visit Pearl Harbor and all the glory that it brings, including seeing the Arizona.

Katie said...

That's definitely one place I'd love to go when (if?) I go to Hawaii. It looks so moving. Great pictures!

*Jessica* said...

So, I'm definitely putting this poem up as my status. I cannot wait to experience the Pearl Harbor Memorial for myself. Amazing Pictures!