“December 7, 1941, a date which will live in infamy,” -President Franklin D. Roosevelt
When one dreams about going to Hawaii they often envision the beautiful, pristine beaches, the palm trees swaying softly with the ocean breeze, the azure colored ocean, and possibly a fruity tropical drink in their hand as they relax in the nearest hammock. (Sounds lovely, doesn’t it?)
Hawaii offers many different experiences for the millions of travelers that come to the islands each year; from extreme sports to the most luxurious spas, there’s something for everybody. However, there’s a special experience found among the obvious that is often overlooked.
One thing you must add to your bucket list, if you haven’t already, is visiting the USS Arizona Memorial at Pearl Harbor. On our first trip to Oahu, we wanted to make sure that we had one full day to visit this memorial, and I never thought this experience would have such an impact on me.
We spent some time exploring the many exhibits that display photographs, memorabilia and numerous artifacts, and then went into the Pearl Harbor Memorial Theater to watch a documentary about the events that occurred on that day more than 60 years ago. We listened to first hand accounts from survivors as they relived the horror of that day, and as we watched I was left with a sinking, helpless feeling.
After the history lesson, the time came to board the vessel to go out to the actual Memorial. Upon arriving, rusted parts of the USS Arizona rise up out of the water from the murky depths below and oil continues to rise to the surface, even after all of these years. The feelings that are felt is something that is hard to describe. It is something that doesn’t seem to be a big deal until you witness it for yourself.
Once you experience this sacred place for yourself, you will be changed. I don’t want to ruin it for you by telling you everything about this somber, sacred place, so go see for yourself. I promise you will have a life changing experience.
May God bless all of those members who have sacrificed and who continue to sacrifice for our Freedom.