Karleen C. Chinen

Spotlight=75th PH Logo“Honoring the Past, Inspiring the Future” has been selected as the theme for the 75th anniversary commemoration of the Dec. 7, 1941, attack on Pearl Harbor. Plans for the 11-day commemoration in Hawai‘i were announced last month by a Blue Ribbon Leadership Committee that has been commissioned by Gov. David Ige. Chaired by retired U.S. Navy Adm. Thomas Fargo, the committee consists of representatives from a cross-section of the community, but largely from the business, visitor and the military sectors. Gov. Ige and Adm. Harry B. Harris Jr., head of the U.S. Pacific Command, are the commemoration’s honorary co-chairs.

In a press release issued by the committee, Adm. Fargo is quoted as saying, “The 75th Commemoration embraces our acknowledgement and respect for all men and women who have answered the call of duty for the last seven decades and honors those during WWII who did everything possible to protect our nation and the world.”

The commemoration events will begin Dec. 1 and continue through Dec. 11. They are designed to attract not only Hawai‘i residents, but global visitors as well. Organizers expect media coverage of the commemoration to reach millions of people worldwide.

The centerpiece event will be the National Pearl Harbor Remembrance Day ceremony on Dec. 7. There was speculation earlier this year that President Barack Obama might be the keynote speaker for the Dec. 7 ceremony. However, officials at a May 9 briefing at the Hawai‘i Convention Center said the keynote speaker has yet to be confirmed. They did confirm, however, that five survivors of the USS Arizona, upon which the Arizona Memorial was constructed, plan to attend the ceremonies.

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