Service members and civilians stationed at Naval Support Activity (NSA) Naples gathered at the Capodichino Reel Time Theater Friday morning to take part in a Pearl Harbor remembrance ceremony Dec 7.
The yearly remembrance ceremony is held to honor the service members who were present at the attack on Pearl Harbor Dec. 7, 1941.
“Seventy-one years ago, the United States Navy suffered this devastating surprise attack by a massive expeditionary element bent on destroying our fighting force and demoralizing our nation,” said Capt. Scott Gray, commanding officer of NSA Naples. “Through the trials and tribulations of a hard won war and a harder won peace, we have forged the enduring bonds of friendship with our European allies and Italy in particular.”
The ceremony takes place every year at various naval bases and ships around the world.
“Ceremonies like this help us to never forget neither the terrible events of a given day, perpetrated by those who seek America’s demise or the extraordinary heroism that such events often give rise to from among the ranks of our military comrades,” said Cmdr. Philip Pelikan, NSA Naples chaplain.
The ceremony was attended by the NSA Naples military and civilian community and included ceremonial guardsman parading the U.S., Italian and Navy flags while two Sailors stood guard over a wreath meant to honor service members who were at Pearl Harbor.
“Wreaths have been used since the time of ancient Greece to represent the victory of the eternal spirit over death,” said Pelikan. “We lay the same wreaths today to remember the fallen at Pearl Harbor, so they are never forgotten.”
The U.S. Naval Forces Europe Band was also in attendance, playing the American and Italian national anthems, ‘America the Beautiful’ and the Navy Hymn.
Naval Today Staff, December 9, 2012; Image: US Navy