Retired WWII Navy vet remembers Pearl Harbor - WTOC-TV: Savannah, Beaufort, SC, News, Weather & Sports

Retired WWII Navy Captain remembers Pearl Harbor

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Max C. Duncan Max C. Duncan
SAVANNAH, GA (WTOC) -

Friday marks the 71st anniversary of the attack on Pearl Harbor.

When the Japanese attacked Pearl Harbor, Max C. Duncan was attending the Naval Academy.

"I was in a class of 42, but they graduated us early. I graduated Dec. 19, 1941," said Dunanc. "I was ready to get into the fray."

Nearly 24,000 americans lost their lives in the attack.

"Pearl Harbor is so important," said Duncan. "It was the motivation of the whole country to avenge the attack on Pearl Harbor."

Millions of Americans were horrified, angered and determined to defend our country.

"As a young man I was thinking lets get on with it," said Duncan.

Duncan later went to submarine school and joined the USS Barb during WWII, where he was awarded two silver stars and the bronze star for his service.

"The 11th patrol was said to be the greatest single attack," said Duncan. "It turned out that the 12th patrol was more historic, because we fired the first ballistic missles from a sub at a target."

While many decades and battles have passed since that infamous day, it's a day Duncan says he will never forget. This year, like others before it, he will pay homage to the moment America went to war and united as a country.

"Pearl Harbor was the crux of motivation to celebrate the bringing together of the country and the avenging of the attack on Pearl Harbor," said Duncan. "A very significant day always."

Duncan commanded the submarine base Pearl Harbor from 1964 to 1966. He is now retired and lives in Savannah.

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