“December 7, 1941 – a date which will live in infamy,” President Franklin D. Roosevelt famously proclaimed.
Americans on Monday will honor the 79th anniversary of the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor in Hawaii.
The surprise raid on the major U.S. Navy base near Honolulu killed more than 2,400 Americans and left another 1,100 injured. In short, the strike signaled the entry of the United States into World War II.
According to the National Park Service, Congress designated Dec. 7 as National Pearl Harbor Remembrance Day in August 1994. This year, due to the coronavirus pandemic, a small, intimate gathering of veterans will be held at Pearl Harbor Visitor Center — though it is closed to the public.
Here are some facts surrounding that fateful day in U.S. history:
Just before 8 a.m. on Sunday, Dec. 7, 1941, hundreds of Japanese planes made the surprise raid on Pearl Harbor. During the attack, which was launched from aircraft carriers, nearly 20 American naval vessels, including eight battleships, were damaged or destroyed, as well as more than 300 aircraft, according to the History Channel.
How many were killed at Pearl Harbor?
The official American death toll was 2,403, according to the Pearl Harbor Visitors Bureau, including 2,008 Navy personnel, 109 Marines, 218 Army service members and 68 civilians. Of the dead, 1,177 were from the USS Arizona, the wreckage of which now serves as the main memorial to the incident. Fifty-five Japanese soldiers also were killed.