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Mayor Richard M. Daley today honored the sacrifice of fallen World War II service men and women during a wreath-laying ceremony at Navy Pier to commemorate the 69th anniversary of the Pearl Harbor attack.
On December 7, 1941, a surprise attack by the Japanese on Pearl Harbor in Hawaii took the lives of 2,400 Americans. Seven of those fallen were from Chicago, 118 from Illinois. The next day, the United States entered World War II, forever altering the course of American foreign policy.
More than 400,000 Americans lost their lives in World War II.
“We are eternally grateful for their selfless acts of bravery and for the sacrifices that these soldiers made – including giving their own lives – so that our democracy could be preserved,” Mayor Daley said. “As the years go by, fewer and fewer people will have first-hand memories of World War II. So we must continually find ways to remind the American public of the war and its many heroes.”
“War is an unpleasant subject, but we must continue to talk about it. Our children need to learn that the freedom they enjoy every day – and often take for granted – was achieved through great sacrifice, and at a heavy price,” he said. “And for that, we will always support our troops and continue to pray for peace.”
“Our men and women in uniform have helped to create and preserve the American way of life,” Mayor Daley said. “They serve today with the same courage and dedication to duty that has distinguished United States veterans for more than 200 years.”
“As we remember the sacrifices made in the past by our armed forces and their families, we must continue to pray for the protection of those now serving on our behalf,” he said.
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