Dozens of Watertown’s veterans gathered on the Watertown Square Dock for a somber ceremony to mark one of the most infamous days in American history – the attacks on Pearl Harbor.
Across the nation at noon, wreaths were laid in honor of the 75th anniversary of Japan’s sneak attack on the United States’ Pacific Fleet in Hawaii. In Watertown, the wreath was tossed into the Charles River with the veterans and dozens of others watching.
The town has a connection to that tragic Sunday morning, said Veteran’s Officer Mark Comeiro.
“At about 8 a.m. Japanese planes filled the skies over Pearl Harbor. At 8:10, an 1,800 lb. bomb crashed through the deck of the U.S.S. Arizona and hit the ship’s ammunition magazine and exploded. The ship sunk with over 1,000 men aboard. Philip Zane Darch was one of those killed on the Arizona.”
A road in West Watertown is named in honor of Darch.
Ed Aucoin, one of the veterans who took part in the ceremony, said the Pearl Harbor remembrance is a tradition in Watertown, and sometimes has been just members of Watertown’s veterans groups. In the last few years has drawn more people, including about 50 this year, but he would like to see more.
“I would like to see a crowd much bigger,” Aucoin said. “Bigger crowds come out to burn candles for Nagasaki and Hiroshima, and that’s a sin.”
The attack on Pearl Harbor is one of those events that helped shape the United States, and should be recalled be all, Aucoin said.
“You can’t forget. You have to remember, just like 9/11,” Aucoin said.