Three quarters of a century ago, Pearl Harbor……..

Three quarters of a century ago, Pearl Harbor became a National symbol in the worse possible way. Today, we see how a Nation in the midst of tragedy, pulled together and fought its way out of an impossible situation to become the world’s only superpower.

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On this spot, on the Battleship Missouri, while anchored in Tokyo Bay, the Second World War ended.  They say that 70 million lives were lost, but I think that is far short of the actual total.

The following pictures are of the USS Bowfin, Balao-class submarine.  All of this class of submarines were named after fish. SS-287 had a remarkable life.  it was commissioned 2 days after I was born and survived the war in the Pacific, where 52 of it’s class were lost at sea.  At 311 feet long and 27 feet wide, she packed a lot of punch and had a range of 11,000 nautical miles.  it was home to 80 officers and crew.  It could make 20 knots on the surface or 8.75 knots submerged. It could stay submerged for 48 hours and had a max depth of 400 feet.

Submarines were responsible for sinking 5.5 million tons of enemy shipping in the Pacific. Out of the 16,000 men who served in the silent service, 375 officers and 3,131 enlisted, never returned home.  Some of the markers at the Pearl Harbor memorial say:  Still of Patrol.

These submarines were engineering masterpieces, operated by men of great courage.

John

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