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Pearl Harbor Anniversary

A day which will live in infamy. That’s how President Franklin Delano Roosevelt described December 7th, 1941. Ken and Wilma Hanna, of Knoxville, were teenagers in Adams County, Iowa, on the day of the Pearl Harbor attack. Ken eventually served in North Africa and Europe during World War II. They say it was an incredibly somber day, but not many tears were shed. People were more in shock than anything else. They both easily recall parts of Roosevelt’s fireside chat following the attacks to this day.

Wilma explains that when they went to the train station to drop off her brother Don, they thought they’d have a chance to wave through the windows. However, the windows were dirty and foggy, something she believes was intentional. Ken was one of many young men who served overseas. He was involved in fronts in North Africa and Europe, including the deadly Battle of the Bulge. There was a layer of snow on the ground already to go along with the freezing temperatures. Ken says it was all they could do to just keep their feet from freezing. You can hear more from Ken and Wilma during Let’s Talk Knoxville at 12:40.