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Pacific Historic Parks Launches “History Talks” Series

Wednesday, May 6, 2020

HONOLULU – In an effort to connect with homebound students and others who share a love for history, Pacific Historic Parks has ramped up its online presence. History Talks is an interactive educational and interpretive series of webinars to share the history and stories of the attack on Pearl Harbor and World War II in the Pacific.


The Zoom conferences are being accelerated in the wake of the temporary closure of the Pearl Harbor National Memorial to contain the spread of coronavirus. Four other parks under PHP’s umbrella are also temporarily shuttered.


“The pandemic may keep museums and parks closed for now, but it should never stop the important mission to always remember, honor and understand World War II in the Pacific,” said Aileen Utterdyke, CEO and President of Pacific Historic Parks.


History Talks is made possible through a partnership between Pacific Historic Parks and Edutainment Learning. Guests include survivors, eyewitnesses and those who were impacted by the war in the Pacific.

Dorinda Nicholson shared her experience as a six-year-old eyewitness during the attack on Pearl Harbor.


Pearl Harbor survivor Sterling Cale related his first-hand account of the attack and how he assisted in the rescue and recovery efforts.


Naoko Okimoto, an A-bomb Legacy Successor from Hiroshima Peace Memorial in Japan, told the story of a Japanese student who was evacuated to Hiroshima and survived the Aug. 6, 1945 atomic bomb.

Jay Blount, the National Park Service’s Chief of Interpretation and Education at the Pearl Harbor National Memorial, honored the fallen at Pearl Harbor and Sicily Rome American Cemetery in Nettuno, Italy, where he served as superintendent.


The next program is tomorrow, May 7, when Alton Takiyama-Chung, a local professional storyteller, shares a story entitled “Pigs from the Sea” to exemplify the true meaning of reconciliation in times of need.

Some of the upcoming sessions will be called History Talks: Fireside Chat edition. In times of crisis during World War II, President Franklin Delano Roosevelt spoke to the American people in his Fireside Chat to ensure that the United States would be strong and give them hope.


Speakers include Lou Conter, one of only two living survivors of the USS Arizona. The 98-year-old attended the past Dec. 7 ceremonies at Pearl Harbor and spoke at Lauren Bruner’s interment on the USS Arizona.


Chief Historian Daniel Martinez will conduct a session titled “Inside the Historian’s Office, Pearl Harbor the Real Story.”


“In addition to being a teaching tool, this is also an opportunity for parents to connect and engage with their children in the safety of their homes and take part in this education opportunity,” said Jennifer Sagon-Taeza, Education Specialist at Pacific Historic Parks.




Jim McCoy, PHP Director of Communications

Email:  |  Mobile: 808-373-0419

Jennifer Sagon-Taeza, PHP Educational Specialist

Email:  |  Mobile: 808-726-4670

ABOUT: Headquartered in Waipahu, HI, Pacific Historic Parks is the non-profit cooperative association of the National Park Service and has been raising funds and providing support to NPS operations at Pearl Harbor since 1979, when the organization was known as the Arizona Memorial Museum Association. PHP also supports NPS operations at: Kalaupapa National Historical Park on Molokai; the War in the Pacific National Historical Park on Guam, and the American Memorial Park on Saipan. And PHP partners with the state of Hawaii to support the Diamond Head State Monument. PHP’s mission is to Remember, Honor and Understand World War II in the Pacific.

ABOUT: Headquartered in Las Vegas, Nevada, Edutainment Learning is a leader in video conferencing technology that combines education and entertainment. Founder and Educator Ralph Krauss streams live interviews to up to a thousand students in 14 different countries. His guests include historical figures, actors, musicians, professors, astronauts, and athletes. Edutainment also interviews people who witnessed history, including survivors of the Holocaust, the attack on Pearl Harbor, and survivors of the September 11 attacks on the World Trade Center and Pentagon. The live interviews enrich the learning experience by passionately connecting students with primary sources of education.

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