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Pearl Harbor dead remembered on 71st anniversary

5:21 PM, Dec 7, 2012   |    comments
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Video: Return to Pearl Harbor 71 years after infamous attack

Kent Nishimura/Getty Images

PEARL HARBOR, Hawaii  -- More than 2,000 people gathered at Pearl Harbor on Friday to mark the 71st anniversary of the Japanese attack that killed thousands of people and launched the United States into World War II.

Ceremonies began with a moment of silence at 7:55 a.m., the exact time the bombing began in 1941.

The crew of a Navy guided-missile destroyer stood on deck while the ship passed the USS Arizona, a battleship that still lies in the harbor where it sank decades ago.

The Navy and National Park Service hosted the ceremonies, which were held in remembrance of the 2,390 service members and 49 civilians killed in the attack.

In Cleveland, local World War II veterans were joined by more than two dozen students from Orange Middle School to place a wreath into Lake Erie from the USS Cod.  The Cod compled seven patrols in the Pacific during World War II.

President Barack Obama marked the day on Thursday by issuing a presidential proclamation, calling for flags to fly at half-staff on Friday and asking all Americans to observe the day of remembrance and honor military service members and veterans.

"Today, we pay solemn tribute to America's sons and daughters who made the ultimate sacrifice at Oahu," Obama said in a statement. "As we do, let us also reaffirm that their legacy will always burn bright - whether in the memory of those who knew them, the spirit of service that guides our men and women in uniform today, or the heart of the country they kept strong and free." 

The Associated Press

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