Pearl Harbor: Herb Weatherwax

Herb Weatherwax was born in Honolulu, Hawai'i on June 3, 1917. He was drafted into the United States Army on June 6, 1941. After basic training, he was assigned to the 298th Infantry Regiment located at Schofield Barracks, O'ahu, Hawai'i. On December 7, 1941, Private Weatherwax was on a weekend pass when he heard an announcement over a local radio station that Pearl Harbor was under attack by Japanese forces. The announcement instructed that all military personnel should immediately report to their duty stations. On his way to Schofield Barracks, he witnessed the destruction at Pearl Harbor and Wheeler Army Airfied near Schofield. In 1944, Herb left Hawai'i for training in the Signal Corps. He was reassigned to the 272nd Infantry Regiment, 69th Division, stationed at Camp Shelby, Mississippi. The 69th Division was sent to Europe, and in early 1945, entered combat at the Eifel Forest in Belgium. From there, his regiment moved inland to join up with Russian troops at a town called Torgau, which was located on the west bank of the Elbe River in western Germany. When the two Allied armies linked up, there was a sense of joy among them, knowing at the end of the war in Europe was near. Herb joined the National Park Service volunteer program in 1996. He enjoys haring his war stories with many of the USS Arizona Memorial visitors. Herb has been active in the Pearl Harbor interview series, part of the Witness to History Teleconference Educational Program. The series allows American school children from all across the country to learn about the Pearl Harbor attack by communicating directly with the survivors of the attack.