It was standing room only yesterday in the Hull Room in the Charlestown Navy Yard's visitor center. Due to the inclement weather some parts of yesterday's Pearl Harbor commemoration were moved from the USS Cassin Young down to the Hull room. I would guess the room seats more than sixty people and there were many people standing in both aisles. I'm going to guess well over 100 people.
I sat behind a row of gentlemen from the Marine Corp League. Most were my Dad's age. Their demeanor and dress were still impressive.
Officers from the USS Constitution and USS Freedom were present.
The main speaker Don Tabbut, a Navy veteran who survived the attack recalled the attack and the immediate aftermath. It was thought Mr. Tabbut would be the only Pearl Harbor survivor present, but he noted there were two others. The Boston Globe has an article that highlights Bernard Murphy, one of the other two survivors.
I think there might have been a few more people attending, but moving down to the Hull room confused some.
Then we headed back to the ship. There were two wreaths dropped into the water and Mr. Tabbut's wife dropped a rose.
I was afraid that the officers from the two ships would outnumber the other attendees. However, that wasn't the case and I was really glad.
A Navy spokesman is quoted in the Boston Herald about how important these things are.
“Any ceremony commemorating such a tragic event is always emotional,” said Lt. Cmdr. Paul Brawley, Navy spokesman. “When you attend this kind of memorial every year and you see the number of Pearl Harbor survivors dwindling . . . it only makes one realize how important carrying on the ceremony every year is.”
You can listen to WBZ radio's podcast of their report here. It's less than a minute long.