The USS Arizona was a Pennsylvania-class battleship which was built for and by the United States Navy in the mid-1910s. She was named in honor of the 48th state’s recent admission into the Union. She was the second and last of the Pennsylvania class of “super-dreadnought” battleships. Even though she commissioned in 1916, the ship remained stateside during World War I.
Besides a comprehensive modernization in 1929–31, the USS Arizona was regularly used for training exercises between the wars, including the annual Fleet Problems exercises. In 1933, when an earthquake struck Long Beach, California, Arizona’s crew provided aid to the survivors.
In April of 1940, she and the rest of the Pacific Fleet were transferred from California to Pearl Harbor, Hawaii, as a possible deterrent to Japanese imperialism.
During the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor on the morning of 7 December 1941, the Arizona was bombed. She exploded and sank, killing 1,177 officers and crewmen. The Arizona could not be fully salvaged, unlike many of the other ships sunk or damaged that day, though the US Navy removed parts of the ship for reuse.
The wreck still lies at the bottom of Pearl Harbor and the USS Arizona Memorial, dedicated on 30th May 1962 to all those who died during the attack, straddles the ship’s hull.
Few people know about this, but after hours at the Pearl Harbor memorial, something profound happens.
Of all the men who survived the attacks, many went on to continue to serve and then lead civilian lives. However, when they pass they are given the option to return to their shipmates who fell on that day which will live in infamy. The process for doing that is powerful and wholly unexpected.
Check it out below: