While walking into a local store last week I ran into Steve Milkovich, the last living Pearl Harbor survivor from Carbon County. I had done an article a couple of years ago on his experience on that infamous day of Dec. 7, 1941, and as we talked I began to think about how, even though I had been reminded of it many times in the last few weeks, I was almost forgetting about the 62 anniversary of that terrible day.
In this day and age of fast moving times, and news bombarding us all the time, and at present another war going on, it is sometimes easy to forget about those that have gone before us and kept us free.
As we stood there and talked he told me that he was going to Salt Lake this past weekend for a special program on the surprise attack. He said he would be sharing his story with many people and with others that were also there.
On Veterans Day, as I took photos of the festivities at the Price Peace Garden, I had to think about how much the men that were standing there, uniforms on, from different eras, had done for me personally and for our country as a whole. It's probably obvious by a lot of what I write in the paper and do with photos that I have a soft spot for these guys. I'm not sure why that is: I am not a veteran myself, nor did my father serve. I have, however, had many close relatives serve everywhere from England during World War II to Vietnam.
What I think it is is that they are so sincere about the way they feel, their commitment to country and to our way of life. They have endured horrible things so the rest of us don't have to. And they have come home and put their lives back together, and brought us, as a proud nation, into the 21st century.
I just hope we don't ever forget Pearl Harbor Day, although I suspect it will disappear into history eventually. The 9-11 attacks have somewhat replaced it as the event of our generation, and someday I am sure there will be another type of attack that will replace that in contemporary minds as well.
But for now, Pearl Harbor still stands out in my mind as a time to think about what others have done for us and to say thanks to them for all they gave.