Pearl Harbor holds an important place in American history. It was the attack on the naval base at Pearl Harbor by Japanese forces on December 7th, 1941 that brought the USA into World War II. A total of 18 ships were either lost or damaged with four of the eight U.S. Navy battleships sunk. On that infamous day 2402 Americans died and 1282 were wounded.
Over half of the lives lost (1177) during the attack happened when a bomb dropped by one of the attacking planes penetrated the armoured deck in the forward section of the USS Arizona. The bomb struck an ammunition magazine and a catastrophic explosion ensued 7 seconds later blowing out through the sides of the ship and destroying much of the forward interior structure.
Today at Pearl Harbor the remains of USS Arizona lie honouring the final resting place of 1102 of the 1177 sailors and marines aboard that lost their lives that day. On the 30th May 1962 the USS Arizona Memorial was formally dedicated; designed by Honolulu architect Alfred Preis the structure stands astride the sunken hull without touching it.
The Memorial can only be reached by boat and as you approach it seems as if the battleship USS Missouri, the 'Mighty Mo' is standing vigil over a fallen friend. Once on the Memorial there are the names of the fallen inscribed on a marble wall and if you look down to the water you see the 'tears of the Arizona' as tiny droplets of oil float to the surface...