PRESIDIO OF MONTEREY, Calif. - The attack by Imperial Japanese naval forces on the U.S. Pacific Fleet at Pearl Harbor, Hawaii, on Dec. 7, 1941, was the event that drew the United States into military participation in World War II. News of the early morning attack by waves of 423 Japanese fighter-bombers flown from six aircraft carriers swept across the nation via radio broadcasts and special newspaper editions. In a declaration of war less than 24 hours after the attack, an angry President Franklin D. Roosevelt famously referred to Dec. 7, 1941, as "a date that will live in infamy."

Wikipedia states that 2,402 U.S. service members were killed in the attack and another 1,282 wounded. As casualty reports reached service members' families and appeared on the front pages of hometown newspapers, communities across the United States were made to feel the brunt of involvement in the conflict to come. Probably few communities were affected more by the shock of the Pearl Harbor attack than Monterey, Calif., the hometown of three young sailors of the U.S. Navy who died at Pearl Harbor as shipmates aboard the Battleship USS Arizona.

The three are Petty Officers Michael Criscuola, Jack Hazdovac and Tom Trovato. They will be remembered at a dinner planned in their honor by the Monterey Elks service organization scheduled Dec. 3 at the Elks Lodge at 150 Mar Vista Drive in Monterey. For the event the Monterey Elks have engaged three guest speakers who grew up with the sailors in the close-knit town that was Monterey in the 1930s and 1940s. Scheduled to speak are former Monterey Mayor Dan Albert, Clara Foster and Jack Holt.

A reception at the Elks Lodge is scheduled from 6 to 7 p.m. with dinner to follow from 7 to 9 p.m. Cost of attending is $40. Information is available by telephoning 657-9793 or 277-4299.

Page last updated Fri July 22nd, 2011 at 12:16