HDNet Commemorates the Seventieth Anniversary of the Attack on Pearl Harbor with a Special 90 Minute Episode – “Dan Rather Remembers: Pearl Harbor”

Colette Carey
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Rather and his team travel to Hawaii to speak with some of the final remaining survivors – Tuesday, December 6 at 8:00 p.m. ET

DALLAS (December 1, 2011) – It’s been 70 years since the day “which will live in infamy,” and the number of survivors of the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor is rapidly dwindling. Tuesday’s emotional and thought-provoking “Dan Rather Remembers: Pearl Harbor,” may very well be the last time all these voices come together to tell their stories. Legendary newsman Dan Rather had just turned 10-years-old on December 7, 1941. And in this program he weaves together his own vivid memories with the survivors’ own stories of those sacred waters. The 90-minute special will air Tuesday, December 6 at 8:00 p.m. ET.

This report takes an expansive look at the history and meaning behind Pearl Harbor: from the harrowing recollections of survivors now in their late 80s and 90s, to a Japanese school group coming to Hawaii to learn about the war. We hear the story behind the building of the famed memorial to the USS Arizona, what the attack meant for local Hawaiians, and reflections on the meaning of sacrifice from a war-decorated Marine who now oversees the fallen heroes buried at Hawaii’s Punchbowl national cemetery.

The window for hearing these stories is closing, “Pearl Harbor Survivor members have a very unique relationship with one another,” says Mal Middlesworth, former President of the Pearl Harbor Survivors Association. “We’re bound together by age – we don’t get any new members.” Middlesworth explains the decision to close down the survivors group because it is just too much work for men so old. They should be spending their last days with their families. Rather says that while the term “walking, breathing history,” has become a journalism cliche, the survivors he talked to for this report really do personify it. “They are, by any measure, national treasures.”

“Dan Rather Remembers: Pearl Harbor” tells this historical narrative through personal stories, showing that Pearl Harbor was much more than just one day. It continues to shape the world in which we all now live. As the Pearl Harbor survivors motto states, “Remember Pearl Harbor–Keep America Alert– Eternal Vigilance is the Price of Liberty.”

Check out a clip from the program:

“Dan Rather Remembers: Pearl Harbor” premieres on HDNet, Tuesday, December 6 at 8:00 p.m. ET with an encore presentation at 11:00 p.m. ET.

Follow “Dan Rather Reports” on Twitter@danratherreport or “like” us on Facebook at facebook.com/danratherreports

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