USS Arizona Memorial

So while sorting through those thousands of photos I mentioned in the last entry, I realized that I have yet to post about one of the coolest places you could visit in North America, especially if you have school-age kids. It’s one of the rarer floating memorials out there. Now before you have to endure the groans of others while selling the idea of visiting a memorial or museum, you should preface it by saying that it’s in Honolulu!

The USS Arizona Memorial sits above the final resting place for the 1,102 US sailors and Marines who perished on-board of the sunken Arizona during Japan’s attack on Pearl Harbor on December 7, 1941. Before embarking the boat ride to the memorial, you are first guided into a theater to watch a very moving documentary about this fateful event. It’s the kind of movie whose truths you wish were fictional. I do remember studying about Pearl Harbor in school, but it wasn’t until I set foot on the memorial…

looked down at the oil spills still coloring the water above the Arizona’s sad wreckage…

then up at the names of the perished on the wall…

all the while rocked by the gentle waves beneath my feet and the wind in my hair, did I begin to slowly realize the immense destruction of that day. And all the days that followed until the war was over. The American flag that you see strategically above you, hovering silently over the memorial–and whether you are American or just a fellow member of the human race–really puts a knot in your throat.

It probably takes all of 15 minutes to tour the entire memorial, but I imagine one could stand for days just looking out at the water and wishing for peace.


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