USS Arizona, Dec. 7, 1941

Today is the 75th anniversary of the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor that resulted in the United States entering World War II. How many facts do you know about that day?

  • The U.S. Pacific Fleet had eight of its nine battleships in Pearl Harbor on Sunday, Dec. 7, 1941.
  • The Japanese forces used the  code name “Operation Z.”
  • The Japanese air fleet had 353 planes.
  • The surprise attack started at 7:55 a.m. A second wave attacked at 8:40 a.m.
  • Commander Mitsuo Fuchida reported “Tora! Tora! Tora!” to indicate the Americans were caught by surprise.
  • Japan attacked Hickam Field, Wheeler Field, Bellows Field, Ewa Field, Schoefield Barracks and Kaneohe Naval Air Station.
  • USS California was struck portside by two torpedoes and sunk. She was later salvaged and reconstructed.
  • USS Maryland was struck by two armor-piercing bombs but stayed afloat. She was repaired and became the first ship damaged in Battleship Row to return to service (June 1942).
  • USS Oklahoma was struck by five torpedoes and capsized. Later dry docked, she did not return to service.
  • USS Tennessee was hit by two armor-piercing bombs. She was repaired and returned to service (August 1942).
  • USS West Virginia was struck by six torpedoes and two bombs and sunk. She was salvaged and returned to service (July 1942).
  • USS Arizona was hit by four armor-piercing bombs, which detonated the ship’s ammunition magazine in a violent explosion that sank the ship and caused irreparable damage. She remains on the sea floor at Pearl Harbor.
  • USS Nevada was the only battleship to get underway from Battleship Row during the attack. She was damaged by one torpedo but was able to move toward the entrance to the harbor before the second wave attacked her with five bombs. She was beached at Hospital Point and later repaired and returned to service (October 1942).
  • USS Pennsylvania was not in Battleship Row but in dry dock at the time of the attack. Damage came mostly from strafing and debris. She was repaired and returned to service (April 1942).
  • Lives lost that day totaled 2,403 military, 68 civilian. Wounded: 1,178 military, 35 civilian. Nearly half of the American deaths were among the crew of the USS Arizona.
  • Americans shot down 28 Japanese planes, sank four midget subs and captured one Japanese soldier.
  • The United States declared war on Japan the next day
  • President Franklin Delano Roosevelt made a last minute edit to his speech to Congress, changing “a day that will live on in world history” to “a day that will live in infamy”
USS Arizona Memorial, Pearl Harbor, Oahu, Hawaii
USS Arizona Memorial, Pearl Harbor, Oahu, Hawaii


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