WWII Vet remember Pearl Harbor - WALB.com, South Georgia News, Weather, Sports

WWII Vet remember Pearl Harbor

December 7, 2007

Quitman - It's been 66 years since that fatal day at Pearl Harbor, but 93-year-old Pete Young remembers it like it was yesterday.

"I was brushing my teeth good and strong when the news came over the radio early that Sunday morning, December 7th, that the Japanese had bombed Pearl Harbor and sunk every one of our Navy ships," Young recalls.

He was in basic training then, a member of the 1459th Boat Maintenance Company. But after that day, he was thrust into World War Two, storming the beaches of the Pacific with a very important mission.

"Our assigned military duty was to repair, service, maintain, repaint and have Mr. Higgins famous amphibious boats ready for the next combat mission, which carried our fighting soldiers to the front lines of the Pacific islands."

And was lucky to make it out alive.  "They'd fly over us in the day time in the fighter planes and strafe us with the machine guns while we were working. Then in the night time, when it was pitch black dark, the Japanese airplane bombing squadron would fly over us and drop bombs on us at night," Young says.

The events at Pearl Harbor changed his life, although he's never been there. 

But he's ready for one more adventure.  "As soon as I can I'm going to make a special trip to Pearl Harbor and I'm going to stay over there a pretty good while."

Where he'll honor the thousands who died and were injured in Pearl Harbor and all the men and women who helped the greatest generation live up to the name.

Feedback: news@walb.com?subject=WWII

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