For the first time since Pearl Harbor remembrance ceremonies began, no survivors of the famous USS Arizona ship are expected to be in attendance.
The USS Arizona was famously bombed by the Japanese on Dec. 7, 1941 — 77 years ago — leading to the deaths of 1,177 officers and crewmen aboard. Five survivors remain alive, but none were able to make this year’s ceremonies on today’s anniversary of the Pearl Harbor bombings due to old age and deteriorating health. (RELATED: OPINION: Pearl Harbor Day One For Which Franklin Delano Roosevelt Shoulders Infamy)
The five veterans still alive from that day are Lou Conter, Don Stratton, Ken Potts, Lonnie Cook, and Lauren Bruner. All of them are in their late 90s and unable to travel according to doctor’s orders. On a week where we celebrate the loss of our last president who was also a world war two veterans, this year’s events take on even more meaning.
Just five USS Arizona crewmembers are still alive: Lauren Bruner, 98, Lonnie Cook, 98, Ken Potts, 97, Lou Conter, 97, and Don Stratton, 96. https://t.co/gIcfYF7LFX
— Stars and Stripes (@starsandstripes) December 6, 2018
Ray Chavez, the oldest living Pearl Harbor, passed away at the age of 106 on Thanksgiving.