Story by Mass Communication Specialist 3rd Class Kennishah J. Maddux
PACIFIC OCEAN – Dec. 7, 1941, according to President Franklin D. Roosevelt, is “a date that will live in infamy.” Seventy six years later as the aircraft carrier USS Nimitz continues its journey home to Bremerton, Wash., that sentiment proves true. During the Tiger Cruise, Nimitz crew members and their guests took time to honor that day and those whom lost their lives on it.
At 1:00 p.m. the usually hectic hangar bay fell silent as the ceremony began as Tigers and the crew watched as Sailors paraded the colors. Lt. Cmdr. Robert E. Mills, from Silverdale, Wash., a chaplain aboard Nimitz provided the invocation.
“It is our hope that everything that is said and done here today will draw our memory back and draw ourselves forward to a solid decision never to let anything like the events that took place that day ever happen again,” said Mills.
Members of the Chief Petty Officer 365 Heritage Committee hosted the ceremony, which included a singing of the national anthem, a brief timeline of events that took place, a video presentation from the Nimitz media department, and presenters who shared reflections of the heroic actions from the Sailors on that day.
“The ceremony was really moving,” said Aviation Boatswain’s Mate (Handling) 3rd Class Nicholas Schommer, from Fond Du Lac, Wis., “It was a powerful reminder of our history and the things Admiral Nimitz and all those Sailors in the past overcame.”
The ceremony concluded with a benediction from Mills reminding the crew to not only look back and remember the events of that day, but also to look forward and be ready for whatever their mission might bring.
The Nimitz Carrier Strike Group is on a regularly scheduled deployment to the Western Pacific. The U.S. Navy has patrolled the Indo-Asia-Pacific region routinely for more than 70 years promoting peace and security.