Originally Published: December 7, 2006 4 a.m.
A visit to Pearl Harbor evokes a history lesson the events of that Sunday morning, 65 years ago today.
One can read the names of the 1,177 individuals who died that day while serving our nation on the USS Arizona. Many were preparing for church services; none of them expected it to be their last day alive. Most of the bodies of those 1,177 still lie in their sunken grave in Pearl Harbor. All told 2,390 military personnel and civilians died during that surprise attack.
Japan's assault on Dec. 7, 1941, awoke a sleeping giant, and the enemy soon faced something it had not counted on the power of American patriotism.
One cannot think of surprise attacks without recalling the more than 3,000 civilians who died on Sept. 11, 2001. On that day, terrorists thought they could cause our nation to crumble by destroying the Twin Towers and the innocent people inside them. What that enemy did not understand was that it was not these symbols of our economy that made the U.S. great. It also is not the economy itself that makes America great. The goodness and strength of America is the power of freedom, faith and patriotism.
It is sad to hear about any of our military personnel falling to attacks, even today. We all hate to lose any of our fellow Americans. And know this: each life sacrificed by one of our military likely saves dozens of lives here at home.
Today, along with remembering Pearl Harbor, we should spend some time thanking God for our military and praying for their protection.