100-Year Old Cantonment Survivor, Tate High Participate In NAS Pearl Harbor Programs

December 8, 2018

A Cantonment Pearl Harbor survivor was recognized, and Tate High School took part in remembrance ceremonies on Friday at Naval Air Station Pensacola.

Pearl Harbor survivor retired U.S. Navy Chief Warrant Officer 4 Francis “Frank” Emond, age 100, attended Pensacola-area Chief Petty Officer’s Association Pearl Harbor Remembrance Ceremony Friday morning at Barrancas National Cemetery.

“Sometimes things happen, and you have to recover. You have to stand up again and get started again. You just can’t let adversity hold you down too long,” Emond said.

“I was in Navy Band Number 8, a musician, and we lost all our friends, Navy Band 22 on the Arizona. And I keep thinking of them a lot. It’s a shame they were so young and their lives were cut off at a very very early age. So I just can’t forget them,” he said.

Originally from Rhode Island, Emond enlisted in the Navy in 1938 as a musician. He played the French horn for the ship’s band and even got to perform at the 1939 World’s Fair in New York before he was assigned to the USS Pennsylvania (BB-38) in Hawaii in the summer of 1941. The day before the Japanese attacked Pearl Harbor, Emond and fellow Navy musicians played at a dance and band contest. His band won the contest against other bands from the USS California (BB-44) and USS Arizona (BB-39). His band later donated the trophy they won in memory to the men from the Arizona. As the sun rose on Dec. 7, 1941, Emond was preparing for morning colors and the raising of the American flag.

That’s when Emond noticed the hundreds of Japanese planes that filled the sky followed by the sound of a torpedo striking a ship docked behind his battleship. In addition to being a musician, Emond was trained as a stretcher bearer and with the general alarm sounding along with the sound of gunfire and explosions; he began retrieving injured and dead Sailors aboard the Pennsylvania.

Following the war, Emond remained in the Navy until he retired in 1968 in Pensacola. He is currently married and has two sons, five grandchildren and three great-grandchildren. His 100-year-old brother still lives in Rhode Island.

Also Friday, the Tate High School Wind Ensemble and Chorus performed at a Pearl Harbor Remembrance Ceremony at the Naval Aviation Museum.

Pictured top: Pearl Harbor survivor Frank Edmond of Cantonment speaks during a Pearl Harbor Remembrance Ceremony Friday at Barrancas National Cemetery. Pictured below: The Tate High School Wind Ensemble perform during a Pearl Harbor ceremony at the Naval Aviation Museum. Pictured bottom: The Tate Wind Ensemble with Florida Sen. Doug Broxson. Photos for NorthEscambia.com, click to enlarge.


2 Responses to “100-Year Old Cantonment Survivor, Tate High Participate In NAS Pearl Harbor Programs”

  1. anne 1of2 on December 8th, 2018 9:31 am

    An amazing life for this man. It seems the Lord put him in the right place at the right time so he could repeat the details if such a terrible day in our history. Thank you!

  2. Willene Bryan on December 8th, 2018 8:32 am

    Thank you Sir for your service.

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