78 years later, his heroism on Dec. 7 still inspires many (including his grandson)

Updated: Oct. 15, 2019 at 5:54 PM HST
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HONOLULU, Hawaii (HawaiiNewsNow) - When Imperial Japanese forces attacked Pearl Harbor on December 7, 1941, U.S. Navy Rear Adm. Isaac Campbell Kidd rushed to the bridge of the USS Arizona.

He died when a bomb exploded on the battleship.

"He was a totally dedicated battleship sailor," Isaac "Cappy" Kidd said of his grandfather.

Admiral Kidd was the first flag officer killed in World War II. Because of his service and heroism, the Kidd name became one of the most revered in the United States Navy.

"He actually earned that his entire career from 1906 forward until Pearl Harbor," Cappy Kidd said.

He was born two years after his grandfather’s death. On Monday, he made his first visit to the Arizona Memorial to see the remembrance wall that bears his grandfather’s name.

"I was impressed," he said. "This is the second rendition of the wall because underneath his name now is Battleship Division Commander, which was not on the previous wall," he said.

Admiral Kidd was awarded the Medal of Honor, and three battleships were named after him.

"The first was the DD1, which was commissioned in 1961. She is now a beautifully maintained museum ship in Baton Rouge, LA," Cappy Kidd said.

His father, Adm. Isaac Kidd Jr., spoke at the opening of the first Pearl Harbor visitor center in 1980.

On Wednesday, Cappy will deliver the keynote address at Pacific Historic Parks 40th anniversary event at the Pearl Harbor National Memorial. The ceremony starts at 11 a.m. and is open to the public.

He said his grandfather stood tall when it mattered most.

"When the 'fit' hit the 'shan' he was there at his battle station," he said.

Admiral Kidd’s body was never recovered, but his Naval Academy ring was found embedded in the Arizona’s bridge.

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