The Latest: Pearl Harbor survivor returns to greet shipmates

AP News
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Posted: Dec 07, 2015 6:37 PM
The Latest: Pearl Harbor survivor returns to greet shipmates

HONOLULU (AP) — The latest on the 74th remembrance of the Pearl Harbor attack (all times local):

1:30 p.m.

Ed Schuler says he keeps returning to Pearl Harbor to greet his old shipmates killed on the USS Arizona.

The 94-year-old was assigned to the USS Phoenix on the day Japanese planes dropped bombs on the U.S. naval base and other military installations on Oahu.

He says 125 sailors from his ship had transferred to the Arizona the day before the attack. He says they were all killed.

Schuler was one of several dozen survivors of the attack who returned to Pearl Harbor on Monday for a ceremony remembering those killed. He also attended a wreath-dedication ceremony on the USS Arizona Memorial.

The water was at low tide, allowing people on the memorial to see coral stuck to the rusting ship.

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10 a.m.

The top U.S. military commander in the Pacific says Dec. 7, 1941, "must forever remain burned into the American consciousness."

Adm. Harry Harris spoke Monday during the 74th anniversary of the Japanese attacks on Pearl Harbor, which launched the U.S. into World War II.

Harris, who leads the U.S. Pacific Command, says for 74 years, the nation has remembered Pearl Harbor.

He says because we've remain vigilant, "today's armed forces are ready to answer the alarm bell."

Harris says the military also is working to "keep the alarm bell from sounding in the first place" by refocusing its attention on Asia and the Pacific region with the aim of maintaining prosperity and peace.

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7:50 a.m.

One of the survivors of the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor says being back at the site to mark 74 years since the bombings brings back "some lousy memories."

Robert Irwin of Cameron Park, California, is one of a few dozen elderly men who survived the attack and are gathering Monday to remember fellow servicemen who didn't make it.

Irwin was in the barracks when the attack began.

He says he saw Japanese planes flying overhead. A fellow sailor said to him "What's the red ball in the wing, Bob?"

The seaman first class hopped on a truck that took him to the USS Pennsylvania, where he fed ammunition to the deck of the battleship.

He comes to the annual ceremony because the attack was a big thing in his life. Irwin served as firefighter in San Francisco after the war and retired in as a lieutenant in 1979.

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7:30 a.m.

A few dozen elderly men who survived the Japanese bombing of Pearl Harbor are gathering at the site to remember fellow servicemen who didn't make it.

The U.S. Navy and National Park Service are hosting a ceremony Monday in remembrance of those killed on Dec. 7, 1941. About 3,000 people are expected to join the survivors.

The event is being held on a Navy pier overlooking the USS Arizona Memorial. It straddles the battleship which sank nine minutes after being hit. It remains a gravesite for many of those killed.

The Navy destroyer USS Preble will sound its whistle to start a moment of silence at 7:55 a.m., the minute the attack began 74 years ago. Hawaii Air National Guard F-22s will fly overhead to break the moment of silence.