Iowans took time on the anniversary of the attack on Pearl Harbor to remember fallen veterans, and honor those who served.
Saturday, December 7, 2013 was the 72nd anniversary of the attack. While Americans paid tribute to the event, survivors remembered the day, reported WHO.
“I grew up in a hurry that day,” recalled Leland Lester, who was 19-years old at the time of the attack. He was working for the U.S. Navy on the USS Pennsylvania, according to the report.
WHO’s report indicated that Lester prepared to fight for his country as the attacks came near. “I did something I’d never done before,” Lester recalled. “I got on the left side of the gun, turned the crank, and turned it into firing position.”
About 50 people gathered at the Pearl Harbor memorial near the state capitol on Saturday to remember the day. The event is organized each year by Linda Quigley, the President of the Iowa chapter of the Sons and Daughters of the Pearl Harbor Survivors.
Quigley’s father served on the USS Pennsylvania and assisted with burying some of the people who passed that day.
Over 1,200 Americans were wounded in the attack and 2,400 people lost their lives at Pearl Harbor.
“Those boys who were serving knew they had to do something to protect the United States,” Lester said. “They were going to give their lives if they had to.”
At the memorial, the National Anthem was sung, gatherers prayed and left roses behind for those who made the ultimate sacrifice.