FREDERICKSBURG, Texas --
To mark the 68th anniversary of the attack on Pearl Harbor, the U.S. Marine Drum and Bugle Corps performed at the National Museum of the Pacific War Dec. 7 in Fredericksburg, Texas.
Approximately 5,000 people attended the ceremony that honored World War II veterans and their accomplishments in the Pacific War. Distinguished guests included former President George H.W. Bush and wife Barbara, Texas Gov. Rick Perry, and Gen. James T. Conway, 34th Commandant of the Marine Corps.
During the ceremony, Bush, who was the youngest naval aviator in WWII, reminded patrons it is important to remember the sacrifices made by his generation, but also remember those that continue to fight for freedom today.
"It is right and important that we honor the genuine valor of men and women who throughout our history have made the ultimate sacrifice for their country, for the cause of freedom, and perhaps most of all for each other," Bush said.
"We're also right to pause and thank the living for the honor and commitment they've shown, and continue to show, to preserving and protecting this, the greatest and freest nation on the face of the earth."
Keynote speaker Conway, said the war that took place within the Pacific is an event that we as Americans must remember.
“You and I must bring our children and grandchildren here so they can grow to appreciate the gifts the greatest generation bestowed on us all,” Conway said.
Conway also spoke of the courage of service members currently serving in Iraq and Afghanistan and reminded guests that our freedom is well protected.
The ceremony ended with Conway helping Bush use a pair of golden scissors to cut a ribbon marking the reopening of the George H.W. Bush gallery.
The George H.W. Bush gallery received a $15.5 million expansion that takes guests on a chronological journey of the events and battles of WWII that took place within the Pacific.