Last Pearl Harbor USS Arizona Survivor Dies Aged 102

( One of the few remaining survivors of the December 7, 1941 Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor died at the age of 102. The veteran, Lou Conter, died on April 1 after congestive heart failure, according to his daughter.

Conter was the last living person to have been aboard the USS Arizona during the Pearl Harbor attack, which resulted in the battleship sinking. The attack led to the deaths of 1,177 soldiers aboard the USS Arizona, accounting for nearly half of the overall deaths caused by the attack. The battleship continues to rest at the bottom of the sea where it sank, with the remains of more than 900 soldiers still inside the sunken vessel.

Conter authored an autobiography, in which he detailed his account of the attack on Pearl Harbor. In the book, Contar described how the USS Arizona exploded after a Japanese bomb struck more than 1 million pounds of gunpowder stored on the ship.

Only 335 crew members of the USS Arizona survived the attack. The second to last survivor, Ken Potts, died at the age of 102 in 2023. Just 19 survivors of the Pearl Harbor attack survive as of this writing.

Following the attack on Pearl Harbor, Conter continued his military service. Conter flew so-called “Black Cat” planes during the Second World War, in which he was twice shot down. After crashing off the coast of New Guinea during one of the shootdowns, the crew was surrounded by sharks.

Conter later became an intelligence officer and participated in combat missions in Korea. Conter also served as a military adviser to US Presidents Dwight Eisenhower, John Kennedy and Lyndon Johnson.

The United States “lost a hero” upon Conter’s death, current US President Joe Biden said in a statement. The country owes Conter and all other US military service members an unpayable debt of gratitude, Biden said.

Indeed, the outpour of respect for Conter following his death shows that the honor of heroic service survives even beyond the grave.

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