Remember Pearl Harbor

Trip Start Jun 18, 2005
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Trip End Jul 27, 2005


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Flag of United States  , Hawaii
Thursday, July 14, 2005

Our first full day in Hawaii was extremely meaningful. Following a tour information meeting and a photography session we toured Honolulu and visited Pearl Harbor, more specifically the Arizona Memorial. Honolulu is a city of 1.5 million people, 23% Caucasian, 23% Japanese, and the remaining 54% made up of Chinese, Korean, Philippine, African American, and only 1% pure Hawaiian. I guess we were both surprised at the huge sky scrapers but when you recognize that Hawaii was created by volcanic activity and the mountains are made up of basalt rock, the strength for tall buildings is definitely here. The visit to the Arizona Memorial was awe inspiring. Knowing that the remains of many of the 1177 service men killed on the Arizona are entombed below the memorial caused an emotional response that words really can't express. We were touched to discover that most people who come to Hawaii and are given a fresh flower lei leave it at the Arizona Memorial to honor those who gave their lives for our country. Although specifically the Arizona Memorial, it represents all those who lost their lives in the attack on Pearl Harbor. The tour began with a 30 minute movie presenting the history of the attack on Pearl Harbor. We found ourselves wondering how our Japanese visitors react to the video shown at the beginning of the visit. Perhaps they feel the same way we felt when we heard what our ancestors did to the American Indian. Pearl Harbor is also home to the USS Missouri. Our guide was proud to point out that the harbor houses not only the memorial to the beginning of World War II, but also the ship on which the unconditional surrender was signed and the war ended. Again, the weather has been perfect. We have yet to experience a day when our activities were curtailed by the weather.
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