Three Pearl Harbor Survivors from Pa. attend 76th Anniversary Remembrance Ceremony in Harrisburg

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HARRISBURG, Pa. -- Today marked the 76th anniversary of the attack on Pearl Harbor, the surprise attack by Japanese forces that drew the United States into World War Two.

A special remembrance event was held at the State Capitol to honor Pennsylvania survivors of the attack and their families.

A standing ovation for three Pearl Harbor survivors from Pennsylvania. Each, a member of the military and playing an important role, December 7th, 76 years ago.

"We put up the first radar units outside the United States and that was the ones that picked up the Japanese planes," said Richard Schimmel of Allentown.

"I was Chief Radio Operator at Hickam Field Air Base," said Isaac George, of New Castle, Pennsylvania.

And William Bonelli - he was working on an aircraft at Hickam Field when the attack happened. He went on to be a pilot.

The day reminds Schimmel of the past, time spent serving in the army.

"It gets me a little bit. I think of my friends who aren't here," said Schimmel.

And George, Serving in the Army Air Force Corps, hoping the day reminds others of the sacrifices made during the attack.

"You don't see it talked about much in schools anymore, and I think it should be," said George.

"This attack by Japanese forces on the naval base caught the nation unaware," said CMDCN Thaddeus Wright, USN, Command Master Chief, Naval Supply Systems Command.

More than 2,400 lives were lost when the Japanese attacked.

"The attack on Pearl Harbor is known as the catalyst of the navy entering World War II," added Wright.

This survivor says serving taught him to appreciate, an ideal he hopes to spread.

"Respect your country... that's all. I'm 100% for my country," said Schimmel.

The three survivors say they plan to attend next year’s remembrance ceremony and hope young people understand the importance of history.

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