Dec. 7, 1941 started as a typically calm, beautiful Sunday morning on the shores of Hawaii, not yet a U.S. state. At 7:48 a.m., that tranquility was shattered by a surprise Japanese air attack on the U.S. naval base at Pearl Harbor, marking the beginning of "a date which will live in infamy."
Over the next two hours, Japanese aerial bombs, torpedoes and kamikaze attacks damaged all eight U.S. battleships stationed at Pearl Harbor, sinking four. The attacks also damaged or sank three cruisers, three destroyers, an anti-aircraft training ship and a minelayer. The Japanese destroyed 188 U.S. aircraft, and killed 2,403 Americans, wounding 1,178 others.
Of the eight damaged or sunk U.S. battleships, six returned to service and fought in World War II. Only one remains at the bottom of Pearl Harbor today, the USS Arizona, along with the remains of 1,177 men who died when the ship sank. Of those 1,177 men, 22 were Nebraskans.