KENOSHA, Wis. — Kenosha native Edward Maurer’s memory might escape him at times, but he’ll never forget his two years on the USS Wadsworth.
Maurer, 97, was a 40-millimeter gun captain on the U.S. Navy destroyer. It was commissioned following the Pearl Harbor attack and saw extensive action during World War II.
“It was almost a month that we slept with our clothes on because we were going under attack every night,” Maurer said. “Rather get up and get dressed you just keep your clothes on and get up and get out.”
Maurer was one of several Kenosha residents, elected officials, and dignitaries at the annual U.S. Navy Club of Kenosha-Ship 40 Pearl Harbor Day Remembrance Ceremony on Thursday at the Civil War Museum.
The event paid tribute to the more than 2,400 United States sailors, soldiers, and civilians who died when Japan attacked the U.S. naval base on Dec. 7, 1941, at Pearl Harbor.
Kenosha’s Navy Memorial Park honors over 50 Wisconsin veterans who died at Pearl Harbor.
Kenosha High School graduate Paul Herrick was a private in the U.S. Marine Corps and one of over 1,100 who died aboard the USS Arizona.
“(Pearl Harbor) is significant because it was a major turning point during World War II,” U.S. Navy Club of Kenosha-Ship 40 Commander Heath Ryan said.
“This event was a catalyst for the United States entering the war and taking a side and really getting involved.”
The ceremony was held for many years at Navy Memorial Park before recently moving indoors to the Civil War Museum.