PEARL HARBOR, Hawaii (AP) — About 3,000 people are expected to gather at Pearl Harbor on Saturday to commemorate the anniversary of the 1941 Japanese attack that launched the U.S. into World War II.
About 70 World War II veterans and survivors of the Dec. 7 bombing plan to attend the morning ceremony on the shore overlooking a memorial to the USS Arizona battleship that sank during the attack.
The event will begin with a traditional Hawaiian blessing. There will be a moment of silence at 7:55 a.m., the minute the bombing began 72 years ago. A guided missile destroyer will pass by and render honors to the USS Arizona and its crew.
FILE - In this file image provided by the U.S. Navy, crewmen of the USS Nevada still fight flames on the battleship, battered in the Japanese aerial attack on Pearl Harbor on Dec. 7, 1941. It was hit with at least six Japanese bombs and a torpedo that opened a 45-by-35 foot gash in the side of the ship. It was intentionally run aground, but its crew continued to fight and was the first to shoot down a Japanese aircraft. At the end of the battle, 50 Nevada crew members died and 140 were wounded. (AP Photo/U.S. Navy, file)
The Navy and National Park Service are co-hosting the ceremony, which is open to the public. Their theme for the event, "Sound the Alarm," will explore how Americans answered a call to duty in the wake of the attack.
Former U.S. Sen. Max Cleland of Georgia is scheduled to deliver the keynote address.
The Vietnam War veteran is now secretary of the American Battle Monuments Commission, which is responsible for managing overseas cemeteries for fallen American troops.
The current U.S. Pacific Fleet commander, Adm. Harry B. Harris, Jr. will also speak.
Later in the day, Pearl Harbor survivors will join military and government officials in a parade through Waikiki.