Upon going to Pearl Harbor, I personally was impressed with the detail, artifacts and vastness of the area. We explored the museum as it walked us through the events that led to the bombing of Pearl Harbor, the bombing itself, and the aftermath and devastation caused by the bombing. After the museum, Michelle and I walked over towards the submarine. On our way we stopped and read about the variety of missiles and torpedoes used, their details, and their technological progression.
We finally made it to the submarine and were impressed with the sheer size. As we made our way back to the group, we passed a large anchor, which was one of the three of the USS Arizona’s anchors. The group then sat and watched a documentary about the events that occurred on December 7, 1941 which were rich in detailed history.
Everyone then climbed aboard a ferry that took us to the USS Arizona Memorial which was built upon the sunken USS Arizona itself in memory of the 1,102 sailors and marines killed by the Japanese that day. Words fail to adequately describe the amount of reverence and humility I experienced.
I went to the back of the memorial that has a wall filled with the names of those who’s lives were taken from them. To me, it was strange to think that countless people skim the wall barely looking at the names, when in reality each one of those names represents a person’s family, friends and their entire life. I took the time to pick out a few of names just to meditate and think about the life they might have had and the impact their sudden death might also have had. It was eerie to think about the lives that had been taken were, to some extent, right beneath our feet.
I looked at the map at the center of the memorial where the length of the ship was marked. From buoy to buoy marks the entirety of the ship but it fails to really show the depth. It was hard for me to picture this massive vessel losing its strength and power upon attack. As we left Pearl Harbor, I think everyone was wondering what it might have been like to be in there on December 7, 1941.