Today marks the 69th anniversary of the Japanese bombing of Pearl Harbor which flung the United States into World War II.
While memorials will take place today at the site of the fallen USS Arizona, the future recognition of the event will soon be left to history rather than eyewitnesses.
With a landmark 70th anniversary in 2011, few survivors of that attack will still be around to help the rest of the country recall one the cornerstone events of 20th century American history.
The Pearl Harbor Survivors Association voted Monday to keep itself intact even though many of its members have died.
That is a feeling Thomas Mahoney of Union, N.J., knows well. Earlier this year, Mahoney disbanded the Central Jersey chapter of the survivors association. It was the last of what once were three thriving chapters in the state with hundreds of members. At the time of the disbanding, there were only four members, one of whom was the 88-year-old Mahoney.
Take a moment to reflect and pray today for the sailors and their families who were at Pearl Harbor on Dec. 7, 1941, whether they are alive today or didn’t survive the inferno of the attack.
We are seeing World War II pass into the annals of time the same way past generations saw the Civil War and World War I fade in the distance. It is strange to see a time and event that so profoundly impacted the decades to come gradually become spots on a timeline, which although forever significant, lose their impact as new challenges arise.