It was 71 years ago this Friday when Pearl Harbor's skies were filled with planes flown by Japanese fighters.
Our country lost 2,403 brave men and women in the surprise attack and many more were wounded.
Survivors of Pearl Harbor are no longer young men and woman and the number of them left dimishes each year.
Sept. 11, 2011, was the only other time America was left in such a vulnerable state. Our fleet was damaged beyond belief and to those trying to defend Pearl Harbor felt like the bombing would never end.
A total of 21 ships were sunk or damaged, there were almost 200 aircraft lost and buildings were demolished.
We fought back like the brave nation we are and we won the battle after losing this fight.
Even after over seven decades, today we salute all the lives lost during the Pearl Harbor attack. We also salute the brave families who had loved ones who served in World War II.
Our flag flies high today in this country because of the service you provided.
We also want to speak to the youger generation, those who might not fully understand what exactly happened at Pearl Harbor.
A vast majority of those killed or wounded that day were not much older than 20 years old. This was an era that a high number of young men went directly into the service out of high school.
If they were not at Pearl Harbor, an even bigger number headed over seas and into war.
Imagine being a year out of high school and finding yourself pressed in the middle of a world war and thousands of miles from home.
This is what made this generation truly the greatest one we have ever seen.
Since it cannot be said enough, we thank you from the bottoms of our hearts.
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