To those that lived it, for those that have followed history, studied it and reflected on its importance, World War II will forever be a foundation in this nations history. This global conflict became personal to the United States and was the direct catalyst that led to 16.1 million Americans serving in this war of global freedom on December 7, 1941.
As Franklin Delano Roosevelt stated in his address to the nation on December 8, “Yesterday, December 7, 1941 – a date which will live in infamy – the United States of America was suddenly and deliberately attacked by naval and air forces of the Empire of Japan.” as he declared a state of war. – Complete Speech
As we look to our young students and the Citadel, many of which will turn to a career in the military, our men and women serving at the Charleston Naval Weapons Station and the historic military significance of Charleston, we take personal pride in the freedoms we were given 240 years ago. To those that have served and sacrificed, those that came home to hold their children once again and those that sleep in tents thousands of miles away from their loved ones to secure our liberties, we are indebted to you.
Each and every man and woman that holds the flag of freedom has chosen to be part of something bigger than themselves and there are not words to describe what they mean to us and how they will remain in our thoughts, prayers and actions.
On this day, let us remember the 171 Charleston County men and women that lost their lives protecting our freedom during World War II. Your names and legacies will never be forgotten.