The 75th Anniversary of Pearl Harbor: A Sailor and his Ship, the USS Arizona

On the USS Arizona, sometime between 1936 and De. 7, 1941.  Probably part of ritual of crossing the Equator for the first time.  Photo likely taken by Frank Bernard.

On the USS Arizona, sometime between 1936 and De. 7, 1941. Probably part of ritual of crossing the Equator for the first time. Photo likely taken by Frank Bernard.

You can easily determine the photographers location when he took the above photo by comparing with the following painting. (click to enlarge any illustrations).
Book cover (see referemces below)  The above photograph seems to have been taken on the foredeck of the Arizona.

Book cover (see referemces below) The above photograph seems to have been taken on the foredeck of the Arizona.

I’ve written often about my Dad’s brother, my Uncle Frank Bernard, who perished on board the USS Arizona, Dec. 7, 1941. My reference link with his – and my – story is here.
In todays post, along with personal comments about Pearl Harbor, I revisit two aspects of the USS Arizona that I have not touched on before:
1) The intersection of the lives of Uncle Frank and the USS Arizona; and
2) reflections from a diver who was assigned to visit the Pearl Harbor grave of my Uncle and the 1176 of his shipmates who perished on-board December 7, 1941.
#1 and #2, below, come from a book I’ve had for 25 years: The Battleship Arizona, An Illustrated History, by Paul Stillwell, Naval Institute Press, Annapolis MD 1991.
The ship and its crew rest in peace. As I write, this date, there are only a very tiny number of survivors of Dec 7, 1941, still alive.
(Info about 1936 forward from pp 323-332 of the Stillwell book)
24 July 1915 – Frank Bernard born in Grafton, North Dakota
12 October 1916 – USS Arizona commissioned at New York Navy Yard, Brooklyn.
4 September 1935 – Frank Bernard enlisted in U.S. Navy at Minneapolis MN; his home address 103 Wakeman Avenue, Grafton ND.
8 January 1936 – Frank Bernard transferred to the USS Arizona
15 July – 12 August, 1936 – Frank’s first visit to Pearl Harbor. (The Arizona had been to Hawaii, but only on two occasions, both in the 1920s. It’s previous locations were the western hemisphere, earlier primarily coastal U.S. Atlantic and Caribbean areas; in later years primarily west coast U.S. and Pacific, usually on maneuvers of one kind or another.)
1-4 April 1938 – (at Lahaina Roads. The brief link about Lahaina is interesting.)
8 – 21 April 1938 – Pearl Harbor
The Hawaii years, 1940-41.
10 April – 23 October 1940
(Alternated between Pearl Harbor (PH) and Lahaina Roads (LR)
10-25 April LR
26 April – May 13 – PH
14-23 May – LH
24 May – June 9 – PH
18-21 June – LR
22 June- 14 July – PH
15 July p August 1 – LR
2-19 August – PH
19-30 August – LR
30 August – September 5 – PH
5-9 September – LR
13-23 September – PH
(Most of next three months primarily at Bremerton/Puget Sound WA)
3 February – 10 June PH*
* 17 June – 1 July at San Pedro. Reunion of Frank Bernard with the rest of the Bernard family at Long Beach CA June 22, 1941
8 July – 7 December PH
THOUGHTS FROM A DIVER WHO VISITED THE TOMB (from Battleship Arizona, Stillwell, pp 286-289).
“In 1983-84 Navy and National Park Service divers conducted an underwater archaeological survey of the wreck of the Arizona. The project, which was funded by the Arizona Memorial Museum Association, had several objectives…The results of the study have been published in a book [Submerged Cultural Resources Study] edited by Daniel J. Lenihan, principal investigator for the Submerged Cultural Resource Unit of the National Park Service.
U.S.S. Arizona, U.S. Naval Institute Archives

U.S.S. Arizona, U.S. Naval Institute Archives

[Interview by author Stillwell, 5 Mar 1990] One of the divers on the National Park Service team was Jim Delgado, and he was involved in a follow-up phase of the study in 1988. He has dived on a number of sunken ships, including the collection of naval vessels used for the atomic bomb tests at Bikini Atoll in 1946. Despite his considerable experience in the field, he explains that diving on the Arizona was something special. He compares it with being in the Oval Office of the White House or perhaps in Abraham Lincoln’s box at Ford’s Theater. He says that he and other divers did not want to enter the ship because they felt they would be trespassing in an area where they weren’t supposed to be.
When he was under the water, especially in the area where the Arizona’s galley used to be, he could look up and see the people watching him from the cutouts to the sides of the white memorial. As he swam around the submerged hull, he was reluctant to touch it or to look too closely into it. He had a eerie feeling that someone might look back from inside, even though reason obviously told him otherwise. He looked into a hatch and saw all sorts of marine growth and twisted metal choking the entrance, and he noted that the deck was covered with silt. Unexpectedly, something emerged from a hatch, startling him. When it floated into the light, Delgado saw that it was a globule of fuel oil, freed from the Arizona after nearly fifty years. It rose slowly to the top of the water, then spread out to produce a sheen on the surface.
While he was swimming underwater, Delgado was overcome by a sense of time warp. The world above had changed dramatically since 1941, including the building of the memorial. But the hull of the Arizona was largely the same as it had been after the magazine explosion had ripped her asunder. True, she was corroded and covered with marine growth, but the essence was still there – the same hull that had been built seven decades earlier in Brooklyn. Shining his light in through one porthole, he peered into Admiral Kidd’s cabin, which was largely undamaged. He saw heaps on the deck that could have been furniture. On a bulkhead was a telephone; Admiral Kidd had undoubtedly used it many times. Elsewhere he saw the tiles that had been the deck of the galley. On the deck were pieces of silverware and crockery, obvious evidence of human habitation many years earlier. He saw nothing that looked as if it have once been part of a man, and he was relieved not to.
When he swam near the bow, Delgado saw evidence of the cataclysmic explosion that tore the forward part of the Arizona apart. The decks were rippled. Pieces of steel appeared to have been crumpled as easily as if they had been made of paper. Beams and decks were twisted into grotesque shapes. The ship showed some evidence of damage aft, but the hull was largely intact – certainly in comparison with the bow. By the time he dived on the wreck, no ordnance was visible, although divers had seen some 5-inch projectiles earlier in the decade. Delgado and his fellow divers found no sign of the kind of large hole that a torpedo would have made in the side of the ship. When the Park Service divers/historian emerged from the grave of the Arizona, he was covered with oil and filled with a profound sense of having been close to something he calls a “temporal touchstone” because it has so much value now as part of the American culture….”

Dad visits his brother Dec. 18, 2015, represented by his son, Dick, and the blue t-shirt he used to wear when he went for long walks, and the Collette family reunion t-shirt (his mother was a Collette from Oakwood ND).

Dad visits his brother Dec. 18, 2015, represented by his son, Dick, and the blue t-shirt he used to wear when he went for long walks, and the Collette family reunion t-shirt (his mother was a Collette from Oakwood ND).

This is what I know about my Uncle Frank Bernard: he was 26 years old when he died; he was quite a bit older than his fellow crew members. When he went into the Navy, it was, best of all, a job. It was during the Depression; he had been in Civilian Conservation Corps, and getting in the Navy was a good opportunity. He was a ship-fitter, which I understand was like a welder. He was unmarried, but had met someone, probably in Bremerton WA, who he apparently hoped to marry. She apparently was divorced, but I have never been able to learn who she was. He was a good sailor, from basic training on.
My uncle and the 1176 others who perished with him on the Arizona at Pearl Harbor were, I suppose, peace-time casualties – it wasn’t until the next day that war on Japan would be declared.
The men on the ship would have known about Hitler, and the war in Europe, and almost certainly knew that tensions between the U.S. and Japan had been building for many years. At the same time, it was quite clear that the attack on Pearl Harbor was one which was indeed a surprise, not known till the last minute. (I describe an excellent new book about this topic, here.)
I often think that Frank’s Dad, my Grandpa Henry Bernard, was unwittingly part of the history that led to the death of his son.
In 1898, likely in the fever of patriotism around the sinking of the Battleship Maine in Havana harbor, Grandpa and others from the Grafton ND area were among the first ND volunteers to enlist for the Spanish-American War. He and his ND Company spent a year, 1898-99, in the Philippines, which became America’s outpost in what the Japanese considered their sphere of influence. While among the first troops to arrive at Manila, the Spanish had basically already been defeated, and most of their time was spent fighting Filipinos who’d just as soon see the U.S. go home. The company lost four men in battle at Pagsanjan Falls, near Paete, Luzon.
Tour over, in 1899, Grandpa and the crew stopped in Yokahama enroute home from Manila (picture at end of this article). It is a picture that speaks a million words.
By late 1941, war planners thought that the Philippines would be a more likely target than Hawaii for the Japanese.
After the attack:
On Dec. 6, 1941, those on the Arizona and elsewhere at Pearl Harbor, would have had no idea about the deadly four years to come; about 50 million dead in WWII, hundreds of thousands of these, Americans; the Holocaust; the Atomic bomb….
The great prospect of peace which came with the founding of the United Nations in 1945; then the endless wars which someone always declares are necessary, but which never really resolve anything. Each war, it seems, provides a pretext for the next war.
In my opinion, for we, the living, is that the next big war, if it comes, carries the prospect of ending civilization as we have come to know it. Nonetheless, someone will be tempted to “pull the trigger”. It matters who leads.
Our nation’s default setting through almost all of its history has been achievement of power through war. War is what basically built our country; and it is war that expanded our empire to an unimaginable and unmanageable extent.
War brought prosperity; it could as easily bring defeat. There is evil; there will always be war. But we need to guard against war as the first and only solution to problems.
The illusion now sold is that we can again be as we were: the very premise of “Make America Great Again”.
It is a proposition doomed to fail. It can only be achieved at someone else’s expense, which simply ramps up anger and the desire for revenge.
We need to change our national conversation, one conversation at a time.
The solution…or the problem…lies in each one of our hands.
Our future depends on each of us.
Here are a couple of items to possibly help give definition to the years since 1941:
1. A personal compilation of American War Deaths over history: War Deaths U.S.002
2. America at War (from the American Legion magazine): America at War001
(The first is only about American war deaths, simply to help me get some personal definition of the changing problem; but the reality is that we, and many others, now possess the capacity to destabilize and destroy everything…as could have happened had cooler leadership heads not have prevailed in the Cuban Missile Crisis in 1962.)
Also, take 30 minutes to watch the 1971 film entitled Man’s Next Giant Leap. It was produced by my friend Lynn Elling, Naval officer in WWII and businessman, who died some months ago at 94. It can be accessed here. The people who put this film together, business and civic and political leaders, Republican and Democrat, believed in the possibility of peace, and they can be examples for us to follow.
As the hymn goes: “Let there be peace on earth, and let it begin with me.”
Henry Bernard, middle soldier, in Yokahoma Japan, enroute home1899

Henry Bernard, middle soldier, in Yokahoma Japan, enroute home1899

The family members in the story are, at right: Richard, Henry and Esther Bernard.  From left, Henry and Josephine Bernard, Josie Whitaker, and Frank Bernard, Henry's parents and siblings, in Long Beach June 22, 1941.

The family members in the story are, at right: Richard, Henry and Esther Bernard. From left, Henry and Josephine Bernard, Josie Whitaker, and Frank Bernard, Henry’s parents and siblings, in Long Beach June 22, 1941.

from Annelee: I read Uncle Frank, When will we learn? However, War with Japan and Germany were justifiable.
Response from Dick: There is no question that war was “justifiable” in both instances. However, I do have a couple of points.
First, it has long been my contention that America waited far too long before entering WWII, which began two years before Pearl Harbor. As a country, we were isolationist, and there were other complications such as a – let’s be honest – not terribly friendly attitude towards the Jews, and an otherwise close relationship with Germany in all senses of the word.
Second, I am always interested in when history is deemed to begin. Pearl Harbor didn’t begin our history of relationship with Japan, for instance. We were sowing the seeds long before. My Grandpa and his fellow soldiers enlisted, I’m pretty sure, to support defeating Spain, with the battle cry “Remember the Maine”, but their service was far from Cuba, in the Philippines on the island of Luzon (Manila). The Spanish-American War was Teddy Roosevelt’s war, largely, supported by the Press, and it seems to have been a war of acquisition, not defense. In the end analysis, it really had little to do with Spain, and more to do with American expansion, and in the case of Japan, what became “our” Philippines was within their sphere of influence, and far closer to them than Hawaii. Like us, they apparently had pretenses of power, and we were boxing them in.
Plus, we long had a very dismissive attitude about the Japanese, generally. People my age who grew up in the United States remember things purchased from Japan which were more in the curio class than anything else. “Japan” was a synonym for “cheap”.
Japan and some other places might now be jewels of capitalism, but at what cost in lives in WWII? I think we have a big blindspot in this area, and we’ll find out if we try to “Make America Great Again” the cost of national pride at the expense of others.
A concluding comment: As I write I remember that letter in German written by my Great Uncle in Dubuque IA Feb. 14, 1924 to his relatives in Westphalia (borderland of today’s Netherlands). At the time of his letter, he’d lived in the United States for over 60 years. In a very long sentence, which the translator described as emotion laden, he remembered a slaughter day conversation from perhaps 1850, and comments his grandmother made about the French during the time in the early 1800s when Napoleon had designs on controlling Europe.
He said this: “I will never forget how, each year on slaughter day, as we cut the fat pigs and cows apart, dear grandmother would say if only the dear Lord will let us eat it in peace and good health, and then, each time, she would tell how the French took everything of hers, in addition to all of the oppression they had to endure, and dear grandfather would tell how the French and the Russians took him and his father with (their) horses and wagon to drive under orders for weeks and, how the horses couldn’t go anymore, and how they were then whipped and left by the wayside (to die) and that the Busch’s homestead had been their lawful property but was taken away by the French, no wonder that my father left his home with his sons [for America]. France’s history has always been full of war and revolution for the last three hundred years and Germany was always the oppressed, if they will ever become peaceful?”
The phrase, “you lost, get over it”, takes on new meaning with this very long emotion filled sentence.

#815 – Dick Bernard: What we did on our vacation: A not-so-ordinary Road Trip from North Dakota to California, 1941

“We did some visiting in North Dakota before we left for California…June 22, 1941 at Long Beach. The first time we had our family together for seven years, and also the last….”
Merry Christmas! This blog quite naturally follows two previous blogs about 1940: here and here. UPDATE Dec. 24 post, also related.
Today would have been my Dad’s 106th birthday (born Dec. 22, 1907). Today, his daughter, my sister Mary Ann, arrives on the Big Island of Hawaii from Vanuatu for a visit with her kids and grandkids and our niece Georgine and partner Robert. Her last 15 months in the Peace Corps is chronicled here, the most recent post, Dec. 18, at the end.
It seems a perfect day to recall a June, 1941, trip I took with my family from rural North Dakota to Long Beach California. The narrator is my Dad, Henry, RIP Nov 7, 1997.
I was one year old at the time. The travelers were Grandma and Grandpa Bernard, Mom and Dad, and I.
We traveled by car.

Here’s some background and the “cast of characters”: my parents were age 33 and 31 at the time of the trip; my oldest grandparent, Grandpa Bernard, was 69 (I’m 73, as I write); the youngest, Grandma Busch, was 57. Grandpa Bernard had a love for machines. Fixing a car enroute would have been no problem for him. Mom’s siblings, my Uncle Vince and Aunt Edith, were 16 and 21…. Dad’s sister, Josie, would have been 37; his brother, Frank, 25.
By 1941, Bernard’s were no stranger to travel: Grandpa migrated to North Dakota from Quebec in the 1890s, and in 1898, sailed to the Philippines via Hawaii to be a soldier in the Spanish-American War. Grandma and Grandpa had first gone to Los Angeles in November 1935 for daughter Josie’s wedding. They likely traveled by train, visiting people they knew in Oregon along the way. Beginning in 1937 they became a regular part of the North Dakota winter community in the Los Angeles area, living in Long Beach.
Josie’s husband, Alan Whittaker, had died after surgery only three years or so into their marriage, about 1938. In 1939 she took a major cross-country automobile trip with friends, documenting the route on a 1939 American Automobile Association road map (see below).
For the geographic inclined, here’s a map for reference. The Red and Blue lines are explained here: Josie Bernard trip 1939001
(click to enlarge any photos)

U.S. map showing the 1939 trip route, and the beginning and end points of the 1941 trip.

U.S. map showing the 1939 trip route, and the beginning and end points of the 1941 trip.

In 1940-41 Dad was a school teacher in rural Rutland ND. His parents home was Grafton, but since 1937 they had spent a lot of time in Long Beach/LA area where there was already a relatively large North Dakota population.
Mom’s parents lived on a farm near Berlin ND.
Invited by Dad’s parents to go west with them, the decision was made to go to California to visit their daughter and sister, Josie Whittaker, who had lived in Los Angeles since the early 1930s, and was widowed. An apparently unanticipated bonus was to also be able to see their son and brother Frank Bernard, whose ship, the USS Arizona, berthed in nearby San Pedro June 17 – July 1, 1941.
A first stop on the 1941 trip was at the farm of Mom’s parents, Rosa and Ferd Busch:
Henry Bernard, Rosa Busch, Richard Bernard, Josephine Bernard, Ferd Busch, at the farm June, 1941

Henry Bernard, Rosa Busch, Richard Bernard, Josephine Bernard, Ferd Busch, at the farm June, 1941

Many of Busch family, and neighbors, pose with the Bernards June, 1941.  Note particularly Edith, 3rd from left; Mary, 4th from left, and Vincent 2nd from right.  Dad, Mom and Richard (me) are roughly at center.

Many of Busch family, and neighbors, pose with the Bernards June, 1941. Note particularly Edith, 3rd from left; Mary, 4th from left, and Vincent 2nd from right. Dad, Mom and Richard (me) are roughly at center.

Dad, Henry Bernard, recalled the trip in a written memoir in February, 1981. Here is his recollection:
“The grandparents Bernard had not yet seen Richard so in the spring of 1941 they came from California to see us [at Rutland Consolidated school in SE North Dakota].
They spent a week or so with us and then said that they would buy us another car if we would drive them back to California and spend some time there. We were happy to get this gift so we managed to get to Fargo with our old ’29 Chevy and went to Ford and Dad bought us a ’36 V8 Ford*. It was used but in good condition. It even had a radio in it. [Note the so-called “suicide” back doors. This was our family car for the next 10 years.]
Grandma and Grandpa with Richard and car for the California trip May, 1941

Grandma and Grandpa with Richard and car for the California trip May, 1941

We did some visiting in North Dakota before we left for California…then on through the Black Hills of South Dakota and then on through Wyoming where we saw our first oil wells, and continued on to Salt Lake City and I remember stopping at a motel at St. George UT. Early in the morning I could hear water running and I got up and behind the motel there was an irrigation ditch running full of water. That was the first irrigation I had ever seen.
We continued on and reached Las Vegas after dark. We saw all the neon lights of the gambling dens but we were interested only in rest. Had a good supper and then to bed. We had heard that the desert crossing was an adventure and were warned to get started early so we did and made the crossing with any great incident. I remember stopping at a filling station about the middle of the desert and among other things asked for a drink of water This was reluctantly given as water had to be hauled in from miles away.
We reached Long Beach in due time and stayed with the folks in their small apartment. I recall that it had three rooms and a bath and also a front porch. It was set in the alley and there were several attached apartments somewhat like the modern condominiums. It was about two blocks from the beach and we could put on our bathing suits and walk to the beach with ease.

Richard on the beach, Long Beach CA June 1941

Richard on the beach, Long Beach CA June 1941

[My sister] Josie was living in Los Angeles and we saw her frequently. We were surprised one day to hear that “the fleets in” [San Pedro] and shortly after my brother Frank [crewman on USS Arizona] came over. He had leave and several times he was in port we had a chance to visit with him and go on trips here and there. Little did we realize that Pearl Harbor was only six months away. [Grandma wrote on the back of the iconic photo of the trip, below: “Taken June 22, 1941 at Long Beach. The first time we had our family together for seven years, and also the last. This is where we lived.”]
from left, Henry and Josephine Bernard, Josie Bernard Whittaker, Frank, Richard, Henry and Esther Bernard

from left, Henry and Josephine Bernard, Josie Bernard Whittaker, Frank, Richard, Henry and Esther Bernard

I remember one time we were riding around the suburbs of Los Angeles that we came by an area of Japanese homes. Each one had huge radio aerials and Frank said that was sure they were in communications with the home land. he already felt that we were going to be in the war soon. Security was heavy with the fleet and we did not get a chance to visit the Arizona, the ship on which Frank was stationed. We would be just curious but not spies like the Japanese.
We left Long Beach on July 5 for the long trip back home. Up the California coast to Oregon and Portland where we visited the Krafts and also the Battleship Oregon [then in repair at Puget Sound Navy Yard, Bremerton WA] and on through Montana and then stopped at Amidon [ND] to visit people we had met there while teaching [1937-39] and then back to the Busch’s before getting on back to Rutland Consolidated where I would be teaching a second year.
I had a chance to do some shocking of grain and threshing before school started. This little bit of extra income was certainly welcome.”

Little more than three months later, Frank Bernard lay dead in the hulk of the USS Arizona.
War was on for the U.S.
Lives had changed dramatically, instantly.
How long a trip was it? Assuming Jamestown ND to Long Beach CA, Long Beach to Seattle WA, and Seattle back to Jamestown, and just doing Mapquest as a guide, that single trip was 4268 miles, under far different driving and vehicle conditions than we’re accustomed to today. It is unknown the exact number of days enroute, or in Long Beach, but the assumption is we were gone at least a month, at least ten of these days basically in the automobile, no air conditioning, seat belts, gps, automatic transmission, cruise control, four-lane highways…. It would not have been a simple trip.
Dad was 73, my present age, when he wrote his memoirs in 1981. If you’re thinking you should do something similar, it’s not too late!
Esther’s brother, George (not in the family picture), finished college at Mayville and became a Naval Officer on the Destroyer Woodworth in the Pacific 1943-45, docking at Tokyo Sep 10, 1945. Melvin Berning (the 13 year old to my left in the family picture above, double cousin to my mother, next farm over) saw his brother August off to the Army. August Berning became a Captain in the Pacific theatre.
Unknown to everyone in the pictures, the summer of 1941 was to be the last of peacetime for over four years….
Twenty-five years later, in the summer of 1966, my parents essentially duplicated the 1941 trip with their two-year grandson, my son, Tom. His mother had passed away a year earlier, and I was in summer school at Illinois State U (Normal), and my parents were the sitters-in-residence for Tom. They, along with my brother John and sister Flo, drove to LA (by a different route, if I recall right), thence up the coast and back to ND across Montana as before. Florence was about to begin two years in the Peace Corps in the Dominican Republic, as her older sister, Mary Ann, is now past half way in her own later-life tour in the same Peace Corps.
George Busch and Jean Tannahill wedding Thompson ND May 20, 1944.  Vincent Busch, George's brother, was best man, 19 years old at the time.

George Busch and Jean Tannahill wedding Thompson ND May 20, 1944. Vincent Busch, George’s brother, was best man, 19 years old at the time.

Josie (Bernard) Whittaker and group at Hilo HI May 2, 1969

Josie (Bernard) Whittaker and group at Hilo HI May 2, 1969

Models of the USS Arizona and USS Woodworth, Frank Bernard and George Busch's ships in WWII.  The Arizona was 608 feet long; the Woodworth, 381 feet. The models were made out of wood blocks by good friend and colleague Bob Tonra in 1996.

Models of the USS Arizona and USS Woodworth, Frank Bernard and George Busch’s ships in WWII. The Arizona was 608 feet long; the Woodworth, 381 feet. The models were made out of wood blocks by good friend and colleague Bob Tonra in 1996.

#661 – Dick Bernard: Pearl Harbor Day and the wreckage of the Minnesota Orchestra Lockout

UPDATE February 23, 2013: Still unsettled…. I sent this letter to the 28 members of the Minnesota Orchestra Association Executive Committee last week. here. Sometime today I’ll again watch the story of Pearl Harbor. [Here’s this years Pearl Harbor reflection]
I also have interest in current affairs, and the recent lockout of the Minnesota Orchestra is an important issue to me, as we are subscribers, locked out like the orchestra from, perhaps, this entire year of concerts. Thus the following post:
Today is the annual meeting of the Board of the Minnesota Orchestra (MO). I didn’t know that till a newspaper column in yesterdays Minneapolis Star Tribune. I had decided, some weeks ago, that December 7 would be an appropriate date to write about the very public catastrophe facing this world class orchestra whose home is downtown Minneapolis MN.
As I write, there are major issues between musicians and management at the Orchestra. The solution for the moment is to lock out the musicians and those of us who bought tickets to the concerts.
For those with little or no interest in or knowledge of the issue, some time ago the Orchestra Board made at least two major decisions: to embark on a major renovation of Orchestra Hall; and to lock-out the Musicians of the Orchestra in a contract dispute, thus almost guaranteeing that the season will ultimately be cancelled (half has already bit the dust.). We subscribers have thus been “locked out” as well.
The Japanese preemptive strike on Pearl Harbor in 1941, and the lockout of Minnesota Orchestra musicians came quickly to mind for me when this conflict affected we ticket-holders. In both cases there was a ‘win’, albeit short-term, for Japan, and for the MO management, but in the long-term it is a rather pyrrhic victory.
(click on all photos to enlarge)

Orchestra Hall Minneapolis MN December 5, 2012

There have been numerous interesting commentaries not necessarily taking one side or another: In the New Yorker was this contribution; last Sunday in the STrib carried this column. There have been many more commentaries. This has become national news.
I happen to have a particular interest in this lockout, since for a lot of years we’ve been a subscriber for six concerts a year, and perhaps have attended two or three more each season. We sit in the fourth row, behind the maestro. Perhaps there are better seats in the house, but we’ve come to like being upfront, and over time you get to know the nature of your neighbors, and they, you. We seem to be fairly typical among our fellow concert-attendees.
All of we customers have become the victims of this conflict. The list of victims is expanding, daily.
I also spent an entire career in and around collective bargaining, so I know the trade, including the foolhardiness of inserting oneself in the middle of a dispute where the real ‘facts’ (issues) may not be visible. All I can say for certain is that at some point there will be a settlement, and the sooner the better that will be for both parties.
As in war, the more protracted and bitter the conflict, the greater the residual damage will be.
In such disputes there are always diverse points of view, strongly felt. In this one, there seems to be value in ranking several top priorities, which I present in alphabetical order below:
Concern for the customers (the people who actually attend the concerts, whether one or a thousand)
New Lobby construction
Power and Control: authority issues
Quality Musicians and others who work for MO
Savings Account (the endowment fund)
Rank these from one to five (most to least important) and you might have a personal idea of where you stand.
Of course, there can be more factors, but these give an idea. As for me, the November 26 Star Tribune printed a letter from myself on the issue, in which I said, in part: “… we buy tickets to hear the Minnesota Orchestra….”
As a result of this letter, I received a number of very interesting phone calls and e-mails, all positive, all expressing similar concerns.
November 24, I sent a U.S. mail stamped letter to all of the 81 listed members of the Minnesota Orchestra Board. It is here: MN Orchestra Nov 24 Ltr001 (There are actually 25 members on the Board, but the Orchestra website lists honorary, emeritus and other Directors as well. They are listed at the end of this post.)
I asked each for “individual acknowledgement of this letter.” So far, no acknowledgements of any kind have been received from any Board member. Perhaps it’s a little too early.
Meanwhile, the hurt goes on as the cement shoes worn by the respective sides seem to be hardening. Maybe there will be a breakthrough, maybe not.
I went by Orchestra Hall Wednesday to take some photos (above, and following at the Hilton across the street), and together the photos evoke for me a very sad situation for a great orchestra in our great community.
I ask good faith bargaining, all cards on the table, and an honorable settlement.
Since it appears that this is essentially a Business driven conflict, I offer a piece of advice to the people who will have to ultimately settle the matter from my good friend, former Governor and successful businessman, corporate owner and philanthropist Elmer L. Andersen, in his memoir “A Man’s Reach” (2000), edited by Lori Sturdevant. At pages 96-101 Mr. Andersen summarizes his four corporate priorities, as follows:
1. “Our highest priority…should be service to the customer.”
2. “The company should exist deliberately for the benefit of the people associated in it.”
3. “[Our] third priority was to make money.”
4. “Our philosophy did not leave out service to the larger community…The quality of life in a company’s hometown is important to that business’s welfare and future….”

Of course, Mr. Andersen was talking about internal priorities within his own company, but still, it is quite good advice, I’d say.

At the Hilton Hotel near Orchestra Hall December 5, 2012

The Dream...December 5, 2012

Directly related post: here.
The Minnesota Orchestra Musicians Union website is here.
The Minnesota Orchestra Board as of December 6, 2012:
* – denotes membership on Executive Committee
Jon R. Campbell*, Chair, Wells-Fargo Bank
Richard K. Davis*, Immediate Past Chair, U.S. Bancorp
Michael Henson*, President and CEO
Nancy E. Lindahl*, Secretary, Deephaven MN
Steven Kennedy*, Treasurer, Faegre Baker Daniels
Life Directors
Nicky B. Carpenter*, Wayzata MN
Kathy Cunningham*, Mendota Heights MN
Luella G. Goldberg*, Minneapolis
Douglas Leatherdale*, The St. Paul Companies
Ronald E. Lund*, Eden Prairie, MN
Betty Myers, St. Paul MN
Marilyn C. Nelson, Carlson, Minneapolis MN
Dale R. Olseth, SurModics, Eden Prairie MN
Rosalyn Pflaum, Wayzata MN
Directors Emeriti
Margaret D. Ankeny, Wayzata MN
Andrew Czajkowski, Blue Cross & Blue Shield, St. Paul
Dolly J. Fiterman, Minneapolis
Beverly Grossman, Minneapolis
Karen H. Hubbard, Lakeland, MN
Hella Meaars Hueg, St. Paul MN
Joan A. Mondale, Minneapolis MN
Susan Platou, Wayzata MN
Emily Backstrom, General Mills, Minneapolis
Karen Baker*, Orono MN
Michael D. Belzer, Crescendo Project Board, Minneapolis
David L. Boehnen, St. Paul MN
Patrick E. Bowe*, Cargill, Wayzata MN
Margaret A. Bracken, Minneapolis
Barbara E. Burwell, Wayzata MN
Mari Carlson, Mt. Oliver Lutheran Church, Minneapolis
Jan M. Conlin, Robins, Kaplan, Miller & Ciresi, Minneapolis
Ken Cutler, Dorsey & Whitney, Edina
Jame Damian, Minneapolis
Jonathan F. Eisele*, Deloitte Service LP, Minneapolis
Jack W.. Eugster*, Excelsior MN
D. Cameron Findlay Medtronic, Minneapolis
Ben Fowke*, Xcel Energy, Minneapolis
Franck L. Gougeon, AGA Medical Corporation, Plymouth MN
Paul D. Grangaard, Allen Edmonds Shoe Corporation, Minneapolis
Jane P. Gregorson*, Minneapolis
Susan Hagstrum, Minneapolis
Jayne C. Hilde*, Satellite Shelters, Minneapolis
Karen L. Himle, HMN Financial, Minneapolis
Shadra J. Hogan, Minnetonka MN
Mary L. Holmes, Wayzata MN
Jay V. Ihlenfeld, St. Paul MN
Philip Isaacson, Nonin Medical, Plymouth MN
Nancy L. Jamieson, WAMSO, Bloomington
Lloyd G. Kepple, Oppenheimer, Wolff & Donnelly, Minneapolis
Michal Klingensmith, Star Tribune Media, Minneapolis
Mary Ash Lazarus, Vestiges Inc, Minneapolis
Allen U. Lenzmeier, Best Buy, Minneapolis
Warren E. Mack, Fredrikson& Byron, Minneapolis MN
Harvey B. Mackay, Mackay Envelope Company, Minneapolis
James C. Melville*, Kaplan, Strangis and Kaplan, Minneapolis
Eric Mercer, PriceWaterhouseCoopers, Minneapolis
Anne W. Miller, Edina MN
Hugh Miller, RTP, Winona MN
Anita M. Pampusch, Bush Foundation, St. Paul
Eric H. Paulson, Excelsior, MN
Teri E. Popp*, Wayzata MN
Chris Policinski, Land O’Lakes, St. Paul
Gregory J Pulles*, Minneapolis
Jady Ranheim, Young People’s Symphony Concert Assoc
Jon W. Salveson*, Piper Jaffray & Co, Minneapolis
Jo Ellen Saylor*, Edina
Sally Smith, Buffalo Wild Wings, Minneapolis
Gordon M. Sprenger*, Allina Hospitals and Clinics, Chanhassen
Sara Sternberger* WAMSO, Eagan MN
Mary S. Sumner, RBC Wealth Management, Minneapolis
Georgia Thompson, Minnetonka MN
Maxine Houghton Wallin, Edina
John Whaley, Norwest Equity Partners, Minneapolis
David S. Wichmann*, UnitedHealth Group, Minnetonka
John Wilgers, Ernst & Young, Minneapolis
Theresa Wise, Delta Air Lines, Eagan MN
Paul R. Zeller, Imation, Oakdale
Honorary Directors
Chris Coleman, Mayor, St. Paul MN
Barbara A. Johnson, President, Minneapolis City Council
Eric W. Kaler, President, University of Minnesota
R.T. Rybak, Mayor, Minneapolis MN.

From 11th and Marquette, December 5, 2012

Downtown Minneapolis from 11th and Marquette December 5, 2012

#573 – Dick Bernard: Three Memories on Memorial Day 2012. Frank Peter Bernard, Henry Bernard and Patricia Krom

I’m at the age where death is an increasingly regular visitor to my circles. This Memorial Day three deaths come to mind.
The first came when I was 1 1/2 years old, when my Uncle Frank Peter Bernard went down on the USS Arizona at Pearl Harbor HI. He was 26 years old, and I had “met” him in Long Beach CA five months earlier, at the end of June, 1941.
(click on photos to enlarge them)

Henry Sr, Josephine, Josie, Frank Peter, Richard, Henry and Esther Bernard, Long Beach CA late June, 1941

I’m the family historian, and I recall no talk, ever, about any kind of funeral or memorial service for Frank.
He was from Grafton, ND. On Dec. 7, 1941, his brother, my Dad, was a teacher in the rural ND country school called Rutland Consolidated; his sister lived in Los Angeles; and his parents were wintering in Long Beach CA. Indeed, according to my Dad, they were not sure, for some time, whether or not Frank was dead. His good boyhood and Navy friend, John Grabanske, was reported to have died, though later was found to be very much alive (and lived on, well into his 80s). Here’s my Dad’s recollection, as recounted by myself 50 years after Pearl Harbor: Bernard H Pearl Harbor001
The closest I have to a “memory card” about a formal remembering of Uncle Frank is a long article in the February 17, 1942 Grand Forks (ND) Herald, reporting on a large ND picnic somewhere in the Los Angeles area on about February 12, 1942. Such picnics were common in those days – a gathering of winterers and transplants.
There is a poignant passage which I quote here in part: “A touching incident occurred during the program. [The counsel for the Republic of Poland in Los Angeles] read a press report telling of the death of a young man of Polish descent at Pearl Harbor, the young man being a native of the Grafton area. When he had finished reading a man and his wife arose in the audience, the man asking if he might interrupt for just a moment…the man [my grandfather] said the report of the boy’s death later was found to be in error, but that the man actually killed at Pearl Harbor was the pal of the boy mentioned in the first press report. “The boy killed,” said the man, “was our son!”…The entire audience arose and stood in silence for a moment in honor of the dead hero and the parents who made the sacrifice.”
Uncle Frank’s grave, on the USS Arizona, is probably among the most visited cemeteries in the world. I know his sister, my Aunt Josie, visited there in 1969, but my Dad and his parents never had that opportunity.
The next funeral I remember is for that same Grandfather of mine, who died May 23, 1957 at age 85. I was 17.
His funeral was in Grafton, on May 25, 1957, and many people came to his funeral.
Grandpa was a Spanish-American War Veteran, Philippines, 1898-99. We still have the flag in recognition of his service.
It has 48 stars. Alaska and Hawaii had not yet been admitted as states. It is the flag we raised on a flagpole the family purchased at Our Lady of the Snows, Belleville IL, after Dad died in 1997. We raised the flag on Memorial Day, 1998, dedicating it to Grandpa’s sons, my Dad and Uncle Frank. (Here’s an interesting piece of research about percent of Americans who actually serve in the Military)

Dedication of flagpole with Grandpa Bernards 48 star flag, Memorial Day, 1998, Our Lady of the Snows, Belleville IL

Plaque for the Our Lady of the Snows flagpole, 1998

Time passes on, many more deaths and remembrances of all assorted kinds.
The most recent came on May 19, 2012, in Langdon ND, a memorial service for my cousin Patricia (Brehmer) Krom. Pat actually passed away in Las Vegas on January 25, and there was a memorial service there at that time, but the Langdon area was her home, and my Uncle Vince and I went up for the Memorial Service.
All funerals are alike; all funerals are very different. Pat’s was no exception.
I doubt I will ever forget the eulogy at Pat’s Memorial, given by her husband of 42 years, Kent.
He retraced two lives together in a truly memorable way, one which any one in any relationship for any length of time could immediately relate to; from the first awkward dance at Langdon High School, to her death at only 62 years of age.

Pat Brehmer Krom's life, May 19, 2012

The details are unimportant, except for one which I will always remember. As I recall it, regardless of how their day might have gone, it was a frequent occurrence for exchange of a simple expression of affection: “I love you Kent Krom”; “I love you Pat Brehmer”.
Can’t get better than that.
Arriving back in LaMoure, before I left for home, I picked up a new flag for the flagpole at Vince and Edith’s residence, Rosewood Care Center.
Friday, May 25, at 10:30, they dedicated the new flag to the memory of Patricia Brehmer Krom.
Happy Memorial Day.

Spring at Redeemer Cemetery near Dresden ND May 19, 2012 near the grave of Mary and Allen Brehmer

Memorial Day, which began as Decoration Day in post-Civil War times, has a long history. Ironically, it was born of what was likely America’s deadliest war ever (in terms of casualties related to the entire population). Americans slaughtered other Americans.
Here are some impressions of today received from individuals. Possibly because the day has an over 140 year history, and because the means of war has changed so much in recent years, making war almost impersonal (see the Pew Research above), there are differing interpretations of what Memorial Day means: is it an event to be solemnly remembered, enjoyed, celebrated, etc.?
How we look differently at the meaning of Memorial Day is good reason for increased conversation among people with differing points of view.
From Susan Lucas: Dick, at the end of your blog you say, “Happy Memorial Day.” I’m afraid I don’t find this day a happy one. The three flags represent our three sons. I’m just so sorry that so many in our society regard Memorial Day as the first day of summer and a three-day weekend to go to the cabin. Anyone who visits Fort Snelling or any other national cemetery can truly appreciate why we have a Memorial Day. While Tom did not die while actually in the service, as the original “Decoration Day” was meant to be, the day should honor all who have been in military service. It’s a day to honor their memory. I question whether it should still be a national holiday when, as Pew Research suggests, so few families are actually impacted by military service anymore.

May 27, 2012, at Ft. Snelling Cemetery from Susan Lucas

From Carol Turnbull: Beautiful!
Scouts observing Memorial Day at a Cemetery in South St. Paul MN, doing upkeep of graves, and placing flags at the stones of veterans.

Scouts at So St Paul cemetery May 28, 2012

Daughter Heather and granddaughter Kelly at grave of Mom and Grandma Diane in So. St. Paul May 28, 2012

The annual commemoration by the MN Veterans for Peace at the State Capitol Grounds, St. Paul MN. Many Vets for Peace, but no means all, are Vietnam Veterans. I have been part of Veterans for Peace for over 10 years.

Veterans for Peace near MN Vietnam Vets Memorial on the MN Capitol Grounds May 28, 2012

Local VFP President Larry Johnson at the MN Capitol area observance May 28

Gita Ghei, whose father was caught in the conflict in western India (a civil war of sorts) at the time the British transferred authority to Indians.

Vet Jerry Rau performs a composition on May 28

Commentary here from Digby related to a Veterans for Peace event in southern California.
Other commentaries on the label “hero” as a topic of contemporary political warfare are here and here.
Of course, such a term is a moving target. In the 2004 Presidential Election, candidate John Kerry, whose military service and heroism in Vietnam was ridiculed by “Swift Boating” negative ads, was made to seem the opposite of what he was: a serviceman who had done his job above and beyond the call of duty. I agree with the assessment that the word “hero” is often misapplied in todays political conversation. Personally, I’m a lucky Vietnam era veteran. I served during the first Vietnam War years 50 years ago, and can prove it. I did everything I was asked to do, and I never left the United States. Indeed, we were preparing a reactivated infantry division for later combat in Vietnam, but in our frame of the time, we had no idea that such a war was developing. We simply did our jobs. If that is heroism, so be it.
But, then, John Kerry was far more a hero than I every thought of being, and he was viciously ridiculed for his service….
President Obama spoke at the Vietnam Memorial on Monday. I had the lucky privilege of having been at that Memorial the very weekend it was dedicated in the Fall of 1982. Vietnam Mem DC 1982001
A little photo album of my service time as a “hero” at Ft. Carson CO can be found on the internet, here. Note my name in the first paragraph, click on the link to the album, and open the link to a few of my “Photographs of 1/61….” in 1962-63.

#306 – Dick Bernard: Frank Peter Bernard, U.S. Navy 1935 – 1941, USS Arizona

It was on a Sunday morning, December 7, 1941, that my Uncle, Frank Peter Bernard, was killed on the USS Arizona at Pearl Harbor HI.
Each December 7 I remember that day, and indeed, am reminded of that day, as the iconic film clip of the Arizona being hit by the bomb is shown.
Dec. 7, 2010, was no different, until an e-mail arrived late in the afternoon from Dave Calvert, someone unknown to me. The e-mail included two photographs of his Dad, Max Calvert, and my Uncle, taken in 1938 at Long Beach CA. The photographs (below) seemed familiar, and I looked in my collection and found two photos taken at exactly the same place on the same day, one of them identical to the one of Max and Frank; the second with my Uncle and his Dad, my Grandpa Henry Bernard.
The miracle of the internet!

Max Calvert and Frank Bernard, Long Beach CA 1938

Max’s son and I met each other through the ‘twin’ photos. His Dad, he said, was an Iowa farm kid actual first name Howard, who had joined the Navy and at the time of the photo was secretary for the Commander of the Pacific Fleet, Adm. Husband E. Kimmel, on the USS San Francisco. Uncle Frank, two or three years older, was a small town kid from North Dakota. How Max and Frank became friends is unknown; as is why they happened to show up at the same place as my grandparents were then visiting. But it was a fascinating story.
The handwritten caption on the back of Max’s photo said it was taken in November of 1938. The mechanical stamp on the back of my photos identified the date the film was processed as August 15, 1938. Such small discrepancies are common in history work. Most likely, because of the photo processing date stamp, the photos were taken in August in Long Beach. The Arizona was in port at San Pedro August 12-15.
The surprise event caused me to write an e-mail to the National Park Service at Pearl Harbor, telling them I had some photos to share of Uncle Frank. In late December, I received a reply, and sent jpeg’s of all of them for the National Park Service Library at Pearl Harbor.
Last night I decided to post the collection on Facebook. You can view them all here. Double click on any photo to get a larger version. Hold the cursor on the photo to see the caption.
Not at Facebook, but also provided to the Park Service, are three text items relating to my Uncle Frank who, in his short 26 years of life, became, unintentionally, an actor in World War II: Arizona014; Memory017; Fam History015
Frank is at peace; May we all be at Peace as well.

Model of USS Arizona hand-crafted by Bob Tonra ca 1996; goblet, one of six made by Frank Bernard on USS Arizona (size 6 inches high); leaves are Hawaiian, gift from a friend in 1998.

A newspaper column I wrote in 2005 about the end of WWII is at this link:Atomic Bomb 1945001