USS Arizona survivors to speak at Las Positas College
Wednesday symposium part of college's Veterans Day observances
Las Positas College will hold a free history symposium featuring three survivors of the USS Arizona on Wednesday as part of its Veterans Day observances.
The one-hour symposium will be held at 11:30 a.m. Nov. 10 in the new Barbara Fracisco Mertes Center for the Arts.
History instructor Stuart McElderry will facilitate the symposium, which takes place the day before Veterans Day. The USS Arizona sank at Pearl Harbor in the attack by Japanese planes Dec. 7, 1941.
"This is an amazing opportunity to learn about our country's history from three American heroes," said Todd Steffan, Las Positas College Veterans First coordinator.
"We are especially honored that these heroes will be visiting our campus the day before Veterans Day," he added, noting that Las Positas College will also feature a full day of Veterans Day activities Nov. 11.
In the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor, which led to the United States involvement in World War II, 1,177 crew members aboard the USS Arizona were killed -- the most recorded casualties on any American warship. Only 18 survivors remain today.
The three surviving veterans who will participate in the Las Positas College symposium are as follows:
* Lonnie D. Cook, 89, Chief Gunners Mate, eight years with U.S. Navy, traveling from Tulsa, Okla.
* Clarendon "Clare" R. Hetrick, 89, Master Sergeant, more than 10 years in U.S. Navy and 10 years in U.S. Air Force, traveling from Bull Head City, Ariz.
* Louis A. Conter, 87, Lieutenant Commander, 28 years in U.S. Navy, traveling from Grass Valley.
To learn more about the Veterans First Program, visit www.laspositascollege.edu/veterans or contact Todd Steffan, Las Positas College Veterans First Coordinator, at 424-1571 or email TSteffan@laspositascollege.edu.