Keller: How could we ever forget Pearl Harbor?

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, December 7, 2022

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You realize you’re old when you can remember exactly where you were 81 years ago.  Wednesday, December 7, we Americans will observe the 81st anniversary of Japan’s sneak attack on Pearl Harbor.

President Frank D. Roosevelt proclaimed it as a day of infamy. A song was soon released titled, “Let’s Remember Pearl Harbor.” How could we ever forget, but many Americans have, that in all, about 2,400 people who died in that tragedy.

One person, the late Mrs. Nancy Acosta, never forgot. She was in Pearl Harbor as a young girl ready to go to church when the action started, shortly after 7 a.m. Her dad was in the military and was stationed there.

I was 7 years old at the time and can recall that Sunday in 1941 like it was yesterday. I was sitting in the football stadium at Leon Godchaux High School with my dad. I don’t remember who won the game, but I do recall the late Inez Madere Millet, in her band uniform, shouting to someone, “The Japanese have attacked Pearl Harbor!” I remember listening to war news on the radio for the next three or four years. I remember my grandmother worrying because she had four sons serving their country. I can still remember playing baseball in St. Peter’s schoolyard when word came that one of my uncles was killed in Europe. I remember food rationing, especially sugar and butter. I know exactly where I was when I heard that the United States had dropped the A-bomb. I was at the Reserve Community Club swimming pool. I remember the end of the war and the pride that we Americans had. We were together. We had won the war.

If you ever get the chance, read the book the local School Board published right after the war recognizing the men from St. John who died during the war.

Let me encourage some of you who served during the war to share your experiences with our young people so they will never forget.  We’ve had other wars in the past 81 years and many men and women, unselfishly, gave their lives for our freedom. Let’s never forget the veterans.

In the past, America has always been able to pull together to fight the enemy. We were a strong and proud nation.

My concern is that we are in a war now and it’s taking place in America. The crime rate escalates as domestic violence, gang wars, and drug abuse cause overcrowded jails that continue to plague society. Abortion on demand is legal and sexual promiscuity is running rampant.

Yes, America is a war zone and we are losing the battle. The reason is because we, unlike the Americans during the Second World War, refuse to come together and solve the problems that have weakened our once great country.

We must always remember Pearl Harbor, but come together and focus today on the battles we now face.


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