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Contact: Hanako Wakatsuki, 808-422-3315
HONOLULU – On December 7, the National Park Service (NPS) and the United States Navy will host the 79th National Pearl Harbor Remembrance Day commemoration to honor the 2,390 American lives lost during the attack on Pearl Harbor and the island of O`ahu on December 7, 1941.
The ceremony will begin at 7:50 a.m. at Pearl Harbor National Memorial’s Contemplation Circle. A very small number of veterans and speakers will be in attendance at the site, with most of the ceremony taking place virtually. Admiral John Aquilino, Commander U.S. Pacific Fleet, will deliver the keynote.
A moment of silence will be observed at 7:55 a.m., the exact moment the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor began. A U.S. Navy guided-missile destroyer will render pass-in-review honors to the USS Arizona and all World War II veterans. A missing man flyover will follow.
Highlights of the ceremony will also include music by the Navy’s Pacific Fleet Band, a Hawaiian blessing, wreath presentations, a rifle salute by the U.S. Marine Corps, a vintage aircraft flyover, and echo taps in recognition of the men and women who survived the attack and those who made the ultimate sacrifice for their country.
“The National Park Service is proud to be a steward of the USS Arizona, USS Oklahoma and USS Utah memorials,” said Scott Burch, acting superintendent of Pearl Harbor National Memorial. “America’s obligation to honor its veterans has been a sacrosanct pillar of our society, and we encourage everyone to join us virtually for this important ceremony remembering the military personnel and civilians who sacrificed so much for their country.”
The event’s theme, Above and Beyond the Call, represents a milestone of its own, as the first December 7 commemoration to follow the nationwide commemoration of the 75th anniversary of the end of WWII. This year’s ceremony will focus on Battlefield O`ahu. Though the Japanese Empire focused on the destruction of the Pacific Fleet in Pearl Harbor, the attack encompassed the entire island with assaults on Army and Marine aviation bases as well as civilian facilities.
The experiences of the soldiers, Marines, Coast Guardsmen and sailors defending O`ahu, as well as the civilians caught in the crossfire, would exemplify courage under fire and perseverance. Their spirit at the beginning of the long crucible of war would frame the template for the securing of victory and peace.
“The veterans and civilians caught in the crossfire of the opening battle of the Pacific War will always be an inspiration to the fighting men and women of today,” said Rear Adm. Robert Chadwick, Commander, Navy Region Hawaii. “We are inspired by their courage under fire and we look forward to honoring them and remembering their legacy.”
The entire event will be live-streamed on Pearl Harbor National Memorial’s Facebook page and at www.pearlharborevents.com in partnership with Defense Media Activity. In support of the county and state public health restrictions due to the COVID-19 pandemic, this year’s festivities will not be open to the general public. Once the ceremony is complete, the park will open to the public.
For more information about the National Pearl Harbor Remembrance Day 79th Anniversary Commemoration Ceremony, and details on the full schedule of events (December 1-10), please visit pearlharborevents.com.
Visiting the USS Arizona Memorial on December 7, 2020: USS Arizona Memorial public programs will run from 12:00 p.m. to 3:30 p.m. at the Pearl Harbor Visitor Center. Tickets will be available via advanced reservation at recreation.gov beginning December 1 at 3:00 p.m. Hawaiian Standard Time. Walk in tickets are unavailable December 5 – 7.
Bag Policy: Visitors are not allowed to bring purses, handbags, fanny packs, backpacks, camera bags, diaper bags, luggage, etc. on shuttle buses or inside Pearl Harbor National Memorial. Visitors may bring wheelchairs, strollers, walkers, canes, umbrellas, jackets, sweaters, small wallets, medication, small cameras and camcorders, cell phones, and small sealable beverage containers. All items brought into the memorial are subject to inspection. The USS Bowfin Submarine Museum and Park has a baggage storage facility near the visitor center. Bag storage will be available December 7 from 11:30 a.m. – 5:30 p.m. for a nominal fee. Additional information on the monument’s bag policy is available at nps.gov/pearlharbor.
About Pearl Harbor National Memorial: Pearl Harbor National Memorial, Pearl Harbor and its partners preserve, interpret, and commemorate the history of World War II in the Pacific from the events leading to the December 7, 1941, attack on O`ahu, to peace and reconciliation. For more about the memorial, please visit www.nps.gov/pearlharbor and www.facebook.com/PearlHarborNPS.
About the National Park Service. More than 20,000 National Park Service employees care for America’s 419 national parks and work with communities across the nation to help preserve local history and create close-to-home recreational opportunities. Learn more at www.nps.gov.
Last updated: November 13, 2020