Martinsville organizes event to remember attack on Pearl Harbor

MARTINSVILLE, Va. (WDBJ7) WDBJ7's Caitlin Francis shared a "Facebook Live" from the ceremony.

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ORIGINAL STORY

Wednesday, people across the country will be remembering the 75th anniversary of the attack on Pearl Harbor.

The attack on Pearl Harbor happened in the early morning hours on December 7, 1941. On that day, Japan's Navy and Air Force launched the surprise attack. More than 2,400 Americans lost their lives. It led to the US declaring war on Japan and entering World War II.

On Wednesday afternoon, the city of Martinsville will be holding its own ceremony at Rose Lawn Burial Park and Chapel. They anticipate about 20 World War II veterans will be there.

Mayor Danny Turner helped organize it. He says the country didn't fully understand what these veterans went through at first, but with time came recognition.

Turner said, “But now some of the reality has come through and people realize how tough it was and how horrible war is and that we have these guys that were willing to go halfway around the world to defend democracy.”

Turner says they'll also give veterans the chance to record their war stories to preserve them. He says it’ll give these veterans a chance to be remembered for generations to come.

Turner said, “It's an opportunity for them to unburden their self in some cases but to tell their story and let them know what a true hero's about. I think Brokaw said this was the greatest generation and it very well may have been, and it should be an inspiration for generations going forward."

The event begins at 12:45 p.m. at Roselawn Burial Park in Martinsville. It’s at 103 Clearview Drive. The program will run until 1:30 p.m. and feature keynote speaker Lieutenant General James K. “Kevin” McLaughlin. It will also include music from the 29th Infantry Division Army Band and the Martinsville High School Marching Band.