Posted by: SJS | December 6, 2011

December 7, 1941

      In the early morning hours of Sunday, December 7, 1941, the forces of Imperial Japan launched a coordinated attack striking several targets across the Pacific.  The bombing of the US Navy base at Pearl Harbor, Hawaii, plunged our nation into World War II and forever changed the lives of countless young men and women who were coming of age at that time.

Red Stahley HS graduation

Red Stahley: North Catholic HS Graduation 1943

     In December of 1941, Red Stahley was a junior at Northeast Catholic High School in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.  Like other high school students, he loved hanging out with his friends, supporting the school football team (the Falcons), and thinking about what his work options would be following graduation.   The events of December 7th changed everything in a heartbeat.  

      As he finished his junior year, Red saw the guys in the class of  ’42 enlist in the service or get drafted.  He began his senior year at North Catholic weighing his military options.  Over the course of his senior year in high school, 1942-43, things were very rough for the American military on sea, land, and air.  Enlisting in the US Navy, and then choosing to serve in the Special Services (submarines or PTs), Red was opting for duty on the front lines.  He graduated in the spring of 1943 and found himself in the Mediterranean in 1944, just as things in Europe were really heating up for the American military.

       December 7, 1941 had a profound effect on Red Stahley – a young high school boy whose life would never be the same from that moment forward.


  1. Steve,

    Really nice post and great picture of your father. You are so right, your father and the other young soldiers he served with in World War II made a brave and very serious life changing decisions. They are all greatly to be honored.


    • Aneise,

      Belated thanks for your deeply supportive comment on my Pearl Harbor Day post. Through this blog and the dialogue it has generated we are able to honor the memory of those who served our nation so well. It also helps us to stay mindful of all our fellow citizens who currently serve in the military. My respect and admiration for all of them continues to deepen.

      Thanks again for your continued support; it means a lot!


  2. Great post. Heroes. Every. Single. One.

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