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Veterans share stories at Pearl Harbor commemoration

CCTV.com

12-08-2016 12:29 BJT

World War Two veterans have gathered to commemorate the 75th anniversary of the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor. Ceremonies took place in Pearl Harbor and at the National World War Two memorial in Washington.

Pearl Harbor survivor veterans attend the 75th anniversary commemoration of Pearl Harbor attack, at the National World War II Memorial in Washington D.C., the United States, Dec. 7, 2016. (Xinhua/Yin Bogu)

Pearl Harbor survivor veterans attend the 75th anniversary commemoration of Pearl Harbor attack, at the National World War II Memorial in Washington D.C., the United States, Dec. 7, 2016. (Xinhua/Yin Bogu)

Across the US on Wednesday, Americans remembered those who died at Pearl Harbor and the long, difficult war that followed. Japan's surprise attack killed 2,400 people and plunged the US into World War Two. Fewer than 200 survivors of the attacks there and on other military bases in Hawaii are still alive.

"I was in the Navy. We were in Okinawa at the end of the war. I was on an attack transport. We spent most of our time out in the Pacific. We had just taken the replacement troops into Okinawa for the invasion of Japan is where we were going after that. That's when the war ended. And you know, I was young, real young," WWII veteran Don Pickard said.

"I was at what they call the big barracks at Hickam, the new barracks up on the third floor of wing D. And it was right outside of our barracks where the first bomb fell. And I was in bed at the time, went to the window to see what was happening. And at that time there was an airplane flew by the window, had a great big red ball on it, and one of the guys says 'that's a Japanese plane. Let's get the hell out of here'. So during the first attack I was setting up machine guns. The second time I was firing at the enemy planes passing by, and survived that day," WWII veteran Jay Groff said. 

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