PEARL HARBOR, Hawaii — More than 2,000 people at Pearl Harbor and many more around the country Friday marked the 71st anniversary of the Japanese attack that killed thousands of people and launched the United States into World War II.
The USS Michael Murphy, a recently christened ship named after a Pearl Harbor-based Navy SEAL killed in Afghanistan, sounded its ship’s whistle Friday to start a moment of silence at 7:55 a.m., marking the exact time the bombing began in 1941.
Crew members lined the edge of the Navy guided-missile destroyer in the harbor where the USS Arizona and USS Utah, battleships that sank in the attack, still lie. Hawaii Air National Guard F-22 fighter jets flew overhead in a special ‘‘missing man’’ formation to break the silence.
‘‘Let us remember that this is where it all began. Let us remember that the arc of history was bent at this place 71 years ago today and a generation of young men and women reached deep and rose up to lead our nation to victory,’’ Rhea Suh, an Interior Department assistant secretary, told the crowd. ‘‘Let us remember and be forever grateful for all of their sacrifices.’’
About 30 survivors attended the commemoration.
Pearl Harbor became a popular topic on Facebook and other social networks, trending worldwide on Twitter and Google Plus as people marked the anniversary with status updates, personal stories of family, and photos.
The Navy and National Park Service, which is part of the Interior Department, hosted the ceremonies held in remembrance of the 2,390 service members and 49 civilians killed in the attack.
The event gave special recognition to members of the Women Airforce Service Pilots, who flew noncombat missions during World War II, and to Ray Emory, a 91-year-old Pearl Harbor survivor who has pushed to identify the remains of unknown servicemen.