Service recalls tragedy

Published 10:23am Thursday, December 12, 2013

Only a few attendees gathered beside the Coosa River adjacent to Gold Star Park this past Saturday morning to carry on a tradition that has endured more than 30 years. Led by Wetumpka VFW Post Commander Jud Elliott, the brief program served as a reminder of the Dec. 7, 1941 attack by Japanese bombers of Pearl Harbor, Hawaii.

“I know that was a scary thing to have bombs falling out of the sky on them,” said Elliott. “Those men and women were heroes.

“The amazing thing is that they got some of those ships repaired and ready for war. If not for them we would probably all be speaking Japanese now.”

The service began with Margaret Ward of the Ladies Auxiliary of VFW Post 4572 tossing a memorial wreath in the river.

Wetumpka’s Pearl Harbor observance was started by the late Jack DeVenney in the 1970s.

“I promised Jack I would keep this going and I will,” said Elliott.

Approximately 3,000 U.S. naval and other military personnel were killed or wounded during the attack; 200 aircraft were destroyed; and eight battleships and 10 other naval vessels were sunk or badly damaged.

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