Pearl Harbor survivors honored aboard USS Midway

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Pearl Harbor ceremony aboard the USS Midway Museum

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SAN DIEGO -- Seven survivors of the attack on Pearl Harbor 74 years today were honored at a ceremony aboard the USS Midway Aircraft Carrier Museum.

The veterans, well into their 90s, tossed a wreath over the side of the ship into San Diego Bay to commemorate the nearly 2,400 military personnel and civilians killed in the attack by Japanese aircraft on Dec. 7, 1941, at U.S. military installations in Hawaii.

"The memories of Pearl Harbor are always quite strong with me,'' survivor Jack Evans said.

The attack thrust the U.S. into World War II, a conflict many Americans were hoping to avoid. President Franklin D. Roosevelt told Congress the next day that a state of war existed between the U.S. and Japan. Germany and Italy declared war on the U.S. a few days later.

Another survivor, who identified himself as Woody, shared his experience.

"I was down in the magazines sending up ammunition to the guns that were firing at the planes coming in and around,'' he said. "It was a bad day.''

Today "was a good day,'' by comparison, he said.

Around 300 members of the San Diego-based dock landing ship USS Pearl Harbor joined the ceremony.

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