USS Arizona Permanent Display Commemoration
Every day in Mishawaka’s new City Hall we commemorate and pay respect to those who served our country and made the ultimate sacrifice at Pearl Harbor on December 7th, 1941.
At the new City Hall in the City of Mishawaka, there is a permanent display of a historical relic of national significance. Just off the main entrance to City Hall is a hallowed piece of the battleship U.S.S. Arizona. During the December 7, 1941, Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor, over 2,300 U.S. military and civilian personnel were killed, including 1,177 on board Arizona, which sank after being torn in two by a massive explosion.
Arizona’s loss has special meaning for Mishawakans because one of our own, Seaman 1/C Arthur Albert Huys, was among the sailors who died because of the attack on the ship. Huys was born in Mishawaka on December 3, 1916, grew up in the West End, and attended Mishawaka schools before his family moved to Wabash, where he graduated from high school. Arthur enlisted in the U.S. Navy on October 8, 1940, received his boot camp training at Great Lakes Naval Training Station in Illinois, and joined Arizona’s crew on December 9, 1940.
According to Navy records, Seaman Huys “died of wounds received in action at Pearl 12/7/41” and was assigned “death #125” by the Naval Hospital at Pearl Harbor. Unlike most of Arizona’s crew, 1,102 of whom remain entombed within the ship’s hull, Huys may have initially survived the attack and died soon after, but his body was recovered from the wreckage or the harbor’s fiery waters.
Arthur Huys was one of 4,400 Mishawaka residents to serve in the armed forces during World War II, and he was one of 105 Mishawakans to give the last full measure of devotion for our country during that war. This relic stands as a memorial– a lasting tribute– to all the men and women in uniform from Mishawaka who saved our country and the world by defending freedom and democracy during World War II.
May our lives be worthy of their service and sacrifice.