Group wants to save WWII history from demolition

John Bond
John Bond

By Zahid Arab - bio | email

EWA BEACH (KHNL) -  Many here in Hawaii and around the country can never forget the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor. That deadly ambush, killed thousands and has been immortalized in pictures and film. But now a local group says an important area involved in the attack is in danger of being destroyed.

It's a place where many marines lost their lives after a steady japanese attack.

The Ewa Marine Corps Air Field has been untouched since the war and while some consider it forgotten, others call it a fixture in American history.

"They basically shot up all of the planes that were right here. Destroyed most of them and then continued onto Pearl Harbor," said John Bond.

Historian John Bond says the old Ewa Field is often confused with Barbers Point Naval Air Station.

"As the planes kept coming in and bombing different fields and everything they would come back to this area rotate and then keep shooting everything that moved," Bond said.

Once a target of fire, Ewa Field is now the target of demolition. A private commercial development company takes over the land's lease in July.

" That group can basically come out here and bulldoze this field completely because they don't have to abide by anything in their lease other than the fact that they can do whatever they want out here," Bond said.

Nearly 70-years after the attack, this building that was said to be used for Ammunition storage is virtually the only building that remains here at Ewa Field. A piece of history that may soon fade fast.

" There really is a very short clock running on this place right now. If it's not saved this place could be lost in a matter of weeks," Bond said.

The last time anyone's used the field was back in the late 40's, but Bond says the memories here are not forgotten.

" Those guys that served and died out here deserve some recognition they shouldn't be swept under the rug because literally that's what's happened here," Bond said.

For this historian it's a hope to create a path to protect this piece of American history.

This month, President Bush ordered an investigation into designating Pearl Harbor and other historic World War II sites a national monument. Bond says he's asking everyone to contact their Congressman and urge them to protect Ewa Field.