Connecticut’s sole remaining survivor of the attack on Pearl Harbor attended a special ceremony Thursday recognizing the creation of a new memorial park.
State and local officials held a dedication for the Pearl Harbor Memorial Park in New Haven. It’s located in the shadows of the Pearl Harbor Memorial bridge over the Quinnipiac River. The park honors the more than 2,400 lives lost during the attack on the naval base in Hawaii on Dec. 7, 1941.
Ninety-seven-year-old Floyd Welch from East Lyme was on board the USS Maryland, which was damaged during the Japanese bombing.
“The next day after that attack I could see it was horrible, so many at once, so many left our world at once,” Welch said.
Friday marks 77 years since the surprise attack that led the US to enter World War II. The bridge is lit up red, white and blue in memory of that day.
The new park, located at the corner of East Street and Forbes Avenue, includes panels where people can view the bridge and learn more about the memorial aspects of the site. The park features a center island with a flag pole surrounded by pathways containing 17 benches to represent the Connecticut servicemen who lost their lives during the attack. The sidewalks leading up to the park was designed to reflect the shape of a submarine sitting in the harbor.
The park was created as part of the I-95 New Haven Harbor Crossing Corridor Improvement Program.