BAY RIDGE, Brooklyn — “December 7th 1941, a date which will live in infamy.”
74 years ago FDR delivered those words after the attacks on Pearl Harbor shook the country and catapulted the US into World War II. Monday members of the the Veterans of Foreign Wars gathered on the Veteran’s Memorial Pier in Bay Ridge in memory more than 2,400 people who died in the attack.
“You gotta keep remembering these things because the world is that way that we have to have this conflict all the time with different people,” said WWII Vet Tom Gallegos.
Gallegos and Angelo Tammaro served in the Army and Navy respectively during the war.
“And let me tell you, to see those young kids in those planes diving into our ships. God bless them all,” said Tammaro.
For those who served in World War II remembering the attacks on Pearl Harbor is a reminder of the ultimate sacrifice that so many men and women have given to protect this country.
“This is our country and it’s not a free country,” said Tammaro. “Where are yous all? Remember!”
To honor the fallen, the group tossed two wreaths into New York harbor. Fittingly the event took place at the site of a 9/11 memorial, in view of the Freedom Tower.
“These were two tragic events in America’s history where we were actually attacked on our own ground,” said Veteran Jack Sanford. “We should always remember those who gave their lives and who continue to serve this country very proudly today.”
Those who served say both tragic events helped demonstrate the country’s resiliency. And thanks to the principals of freedom and service, they say the country was able to to rebuild stronger than before.
“It’s a big deal in the way that we were able to recover from it,” said Gallegos. “I’m glad I served.”