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Almost Seventy Years Later, Greenspring Pearl Harbor Survivors Remember

November 16, 2011

With the 70th anniversary of the Pearl Harbor attacks fast approaching, Greenspring retirement community remembers as resident survivors who were at Pearl Harbor on December 7, 1941 share their stories.
Elizabeth 'Betty' Kenealy was 9 years old at the time of the Pearl Harbor attack; her father was a sheet metal worker for the Navy and they lived very close to Hickam and Pearl Harbor.   On the morning of December 7, 1941, she and her brothers were watching airplanes from a field nearby John Rogers Airport (now Honolulu Int'l Airport). Shortly after they left to go to church, her father heard loud noises and saw the Japanese planes; he immediately packed everyone in a car and drove them 30 minutes away to Kaimuki.  When they returned, they found out everyone else left on the field that morning had been killed and their own house had been hit by machine gun fire.
Carl Kloss was 14 years old and lived on the harbor.  He recalls hearing planes flying overhead while waiting to go to church that Sunday.  He watched Japanese planes dive down into the harbor from some nearby unfinished buildings.  He and his family did not hear from their father for three days after the attacks; his father was a Chief in the Navy at the time. Following the attacks, Carl Kloss worked at a nearby temporary hospital that was set-up and helped the injured (feeding them, learning how to make beds, etc.)
Houston 'Hugh' Wynn was 25 years old and had just started work on Dec. 1, 1941 as a landscape architect working on officers' houses around Pearl Harbor.  An aircraft shell exploded in the yard next door and woke him up on Dec. 7, 1941.  After the attacks, he and a friend took a camera to the harbor and took photos of what remained; most were of ships still burning and smoking.  He recalls that the young reporter on the radio that morning told listeners that is was just an air raid and no one was in any danger; he remembers how nervous the reporter sounded that morning.  He also remembers the blackout and curfew for Pearl Harbor which remained in place for three years.
Resident Carolyn Posey is the daughter of a Naval Lt. Commander who was stationed on the U.S.S. Maryland during Pearl Harbor, which was one of the ships under attack.  She has kept a typewritten, original account of what happened that day along with several pages of remarks that came out of the control room on the U.S.S. Maryland during the attacks.
ABOUT GREENSPRING:  Greenspring, one of 16 Erickson Living full-service retirement communities, is situated on a scenic 108-acre campus in Springfield, Virginia.  The community is home to 2000 residents, many of which reside in the 1405 independent living units.  At Greenspring, a robust complement of resident programs and facilities promote an engaged, fulfilling lifestyle that is reflected in resident satisfaction levels that exceed the industry average.  Life at Greenspring offers a true sense of community and is an exciting alternative to the typical retirement community.  Additional information about Greenspring can be found at