A Sailor's Return To The USS Arizona

Ray Guna
Ray Guna
Cozette Guna
Cozette Guna
Capt. Taylor Skardon
Capt. Taylor Skardon
The Heroes of Pearl Harbor
The Heroes of Pearl Harbor

By Joann Shin

(KHNL) - Long after Thursday's ceremonies were over, USS Arizona survivors and their families held one more service.

They returned to the memorial to pay tribute to one of their own.

Survivors said goodbye to Andrew Guna. He was a member of the USS Arizona.

He passed away last March, at the age of 90.

And his family felt it was important to return him to his ship and to his shipmates.

Ray Guna and his mother Cozette make a difficult trip out to sea.

Their destination is the USS Arizona Memorial.

It is here, where Ray will lay to rest his father, Andrew.

Andrew Guna was a member of the USS Arizona.

He left on leave to California, two days before the Japanese bombed Pearl Harbor.

"By pretty much luck, by being on leave on the 5th, he survived. He had all his friends from the first division, pretty much all were killed," explained Ray Guna.

Andrew Guna did go on and he served in the Navy for 23 years.

Through it all, he never forgot his shipmates on board the Arizona.

When he died in March of this year, Ray knew what he needed to do.

He said, "It was just important to me, to my family that he return back to his ship."

And so on this 65th anniversary, that wish became a reality.

Divers returned Guna to sea.

It was a bittersweet moment for his wife of 68 years.

Cozette Guna said of her husband, "He's finally really gone. Before you always had a little hope."

Now Andrew Guna is among the names forever etched in this wall and forever a part of history.

It's been a long time coming, but Ray says his father is finally reunited with the Arizona's other heroes.

"Home is a sailor, home from the sea. He's finally returned to his buddies," Guna said.

Guna is the 29th USS Arizona survivor, who later passed on and is now buried at the memorial.