Today across Hawaii as people remember the events of the day that President Franklin Roosevelt said would “live in infamy.” 69 years ago on this date in 1941 the United States was attacked by Japanese air and naval forces. Besides the utter devastation to warships and military aircraft, over 2,000 Americans died in the attack and the United States was brought into World War II.

Although this is a day to remember the past events of that fateful day, today is also a day of great celebration. Today, the new Pearl Harbor Visitor Center is being dedicated. The $58 million facility replaces the former USS Arizona Memorial Visitor Center and will better serve the millions of visitors that come to Pearl Harbor.

Let us all “Remember Pearl Harbor” today as we reflect upon what happened 69 years ago:

View looking down "Battleship Row" from Ford Island Naval Air Station, shortly after the Japanese torpedo plane attack. USS California (BB-44) is at left, listing to port after receiving two torpedo hits. In the center are USS Maryland (BB-46) with the capsized USS Oklahoma (BB-37) alongside. USS Neosho (AO-23) is at right, backing clear of the area. Most smoke is from USS Arizona (BB-39). (Navy)

View of the Parade Ground at the Pearl Harbor Marine Barracks, between 0930 and 1130 hrs. on 7 December 1941, with smoke in the background rising from burning ships. Note armed Marines at left, awaiting the possible return of Japanese aircraft. (Navy)

Doris Miller, Mess Attendant Second Class, USN (1919-1943) Just after being presented with the Navy Cross by Admiral Chester W. Nimitz, on board USS Enterprise (CV-6) at Pearl Harbor, 27 May 1942. The medal was awarded for heroism on board USS West Virginia (BB-48) during the Pearl Harbor Attack, 7 December 1941. (Navy)

USS Bennington (CVA-20) Passes the wreck of USS Arizona (BB-39) in Pearl Harbor, Hawaii, on Memorial Day, 31 May 1958. Bennington's crew is in formation on the flight deck, spelling out a tribute to the Arizona's crewmen who were lost in the 7 December 1941 Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor. Note the outline of Arizona's hull and the flow of oil from her fuel tanks. (Navy)

The forward superstructure and Number Two 14"/45 triple gun turret of the sunken USS Arizona (BB-39), afire after the Japanese raid, 7 December 1941. The foremast is leaning as a result of the collapse of the hull structure below its front leg, following the explosion of the ship's forward magazines. (Navy)

The capsized hull of USS Oklahoma (BB-37), with a barge alongside to support rescue efforts, probably on 8 December 1941. USS Maryland (BB-46) is at right, and USS California (BB-44) is in the center distance. (Navy)

USS Nevada (BB-36) beached and burning after being hit forward by Japanese bombs and torpedoes. Her pilothouse area is discolored by fires in that vicinity. The harbor tug Hoga (YT-146) is alongside Nevada's port bow, helping to fight fires on the battleship's forecastle. Note channel marker bouy against Nevada's starboard side. (Navy)

Japanese Navy Type 99 Carrier Bombers ("Val") prepare to take off from an aircraft carrier during the morning of 7 December 1941. Ship in the background is the carrier Soryu. (Navy)

A Marine rifle squad fires a volley over the bodies of fifteen officers and men killed at Naval Air Station Kanoehe Bay during the Pearl Harbor raid. These burial ceremonies took place on 8 December 1941, the day after the attack. (Navy)


Master Sgt. John Sieh salutes the flag as F-15 Eagles fly a missing man formation Dec. 7, 2009, during the 68th Remembrance Ceremony at Hickam Air Force Base, Hawaii. The ceremony marked the anniversary of the Dec. 7, 1941, attacks on Pearl Harbor Navy fleet and the Army Air Corps fields of Hickam, Wheeler and Bellows. Sieh is from the 15th Airlift Wing protocol office and the F-15s are from the 199th Fighter Squadron of the Hawaii Air National Guard. (U.S. Air Force photo/Staff Sgt. Mike Meares)