Oldest living Pearl Harbor survivor visits Wichita

Local

The oldest living survivor of the attack on Pearl Harbor made his way to Wichita today.

106-year old Chief Petty Officer Ray Chavez attended a meet and greet ceremony today at Yingling Aviation.

Chavez was 29-years old and stationed at Pearl Harbor on December 7th, 1941.

He says he had worked overnight and came home early that morning, telling his wife not to bother him while he took a nap.

“It seemed like it was only 10 minutes, that I slept and she called me that we are being attacked,” said Chavez.  “I said, who is going to attack us? She said, the Japanese are here,” Chavez added.

Chavez described what it was like shortly after the attack.

“All the ships were on a fire in the harbor, black smoke and fire,” said Chavez.

For the oldest living Pearl Harbor survivor, it was a heroes welcome in Wichita today.

Chavez met and mingled with current and former servicemen and women.

Afterwards, a ceremony was held at Veterans Memorial Park, where Chavez received a brick, commemorating his service in World War II.

“This is quite significant, because he is a World War II Veteran, he is the greatest generation, he is what that represents,” said Herb Duncan, a Vietnam War veteran.

Chavez left Wichita this afternoon, en route to Washington D.C.

He is expected to participate in the 2018 National Memorial Day Program.

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