Local Pearl Harbor Survivor Frank Edmond Turns 103

May 21, 2021

Pearl Harbor survivor Frank Emond of Cantonment celebrated his 103rd birthday Friday. And he’s looking forward to reading your birthday wishes in the comment section below, or on our Facebook page.

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 Emond, CWO4 USN (RET.), spent his naval career as a musician and band director. He was on the stern of the USS Pennsylvania (BB-38) getting ready to play morning “Colors” on his French horn when the Japanese attacked Pearl Harbor on December 7, 1941. Emond then walked to the conductor’s stand, picked up the baton and proceeded to direct the band in “Stars and Stripes”.

After seven years of playing horn, he became a Navy bandleader, retiring in 1968.

“I’m about the last one (Pearl Harbor survivor) left around here,” Emond said during a drive-by birthday party last year at the Gonzalez United Methodist Church.

He remained a music man; sometimes leading the music at Gonzalez Methodist  and performing with the Pensacola Civic Band. The Guinness Book of World Records named him the “Oldest Musical Conductor” in the world after he participated in a 2019 Memorial Day concert.

Picture above, Emond is seen celebrating a few days ago and encouraging future Naval Aviator Eva Miller as she begins her time in the NROTC at Embry Riddle Aeronautical University. Miller, who is graduating this year from Tate High School, calls Emond “Uncle Frank” even there is no blood relation.

For photos from Emond’s 102 drive-by birthday event in 2020, click or tap here.

Pictured below: Scenes from Frank Emond’s 102nd drive-thru birthday party last year at Gonzalez United Methodist Church. NorthEscambia.com photos, click to enlarge.


81 Responses to “Local Pearl Harbor Survivor Frank Edmond Turns 103”

  1. Ed Neal on June 20th, 2021 9:49 am

    Happy Birthday Mr. Emond. It has been my honor to have been a member of your NAS Pensacola Band from 1963-1965. I recall talking to you on the phone last year as we both remembered those times including the record album you bought “The Singing Nun”, your white Nash Rambler, and the two week long trips the band made to play in the Marci Gras parades those years. I wish you all the best. I really respect you as I knew you personally as I spent those two years in your office as the Band yeoman.

  2. Kathy on June 4th, 2021 4:21 pm

    Mr. Emond, this is Kathy that lived across the street from you and Mrs. E many years ago and from Fairfield President. You look wonderful. Would love to see you sometime.
    Happy Belated Birthday!!

  3. Will Taylor ( Colonel Retired) on May 30th, 2021 11:13 am

    Uncle Frank, thank you for your service to our nation and being a role model for me and others growing up. I remember spending time while visiting with you and Aunt Evelyn in all the places you were stationed. I salute you and send a heart felt prayer to all the men and women who gave the ultimate sacrifice for our nation. God bless you and the USA!

  4. Dave Lambert on May 26th, 2021 8:47 pm

    Happy birthday – thank you for your service and god bless you sir!

    From the son of a WWII vet and Associate member of SDPHSA

    Dave Lambert

  5. Milton B Humphrey on May 23rd, 2021 8:13 pm

    Mr Frank Edmond, I had the honor to meet and speak with you on September 12 2018 in Clarksville Tn. This was a dinner to welcome veterans and you and Mr Edgar Harrell were the guest speakers. I have a picture of us three together. I feel so bless to to meet both of you. HAPPY 103RD BIRTHDAY, SIR.

  6. Judy Butler on May 23rd, 2021 7:39 pm

    Happy Birthday, thank you for your service.

  7. Cindybo on May 23rd, 2021 6:07 pm

    Happy Birthday Mr. Frank! We appreciate and thank you for your service! Have a blessed Birthday!!

  8. Cannon cocker retired on May 22nd, 2021 8:25 pm

    First and foremost thank you Sir for your service and of course Happy Birthday. People say say the only thing guaranteed in life is change. Sometimes good sometimes bad, I’m sure you have seen your fair share of both. My birthday wish to you is that you have seen more good.

  9. Donna McNeilly on May 22nd, 2021 8:09 pm

    Happy Birthday, Sir. Thank you for serving your country and the sacrifices you made. God has blessed you with a wonderful life and you have seen so many avenues of progression. Than you for using your musical talents for the Lord! I know you have been such a blessing to so many. My Dad and 2 of his brothers served in WWII in the Pacific. May God continue to bless you.

  10. Jen Williams on May 22nd, 2021 5:51 pm

    Happy Birthday Mr.Frank!! Thank you sir for your service to our country! May God Bless You! Enjoy your special day.

  11. Deborah Daugherty on May 22nd, 2021 12:49 pm

    Happy Birthday..you are a truly amazing man..Thank you for your service,Sir

  12. KEN HORTON on May 22nd, 2021 11:03 am

    Best wishes Frank. Was honored to volunteer with you at NAVAL HOSPITAL PENSACOLA QUARTERDECK.

  13. RC on May 22nd, 2021 10:23 am

    Happy Birthday Mr. Edmonds! Thank you for your service to our country.

  14. ELW on May 22nd, 2021 10:17 am

    God has blessed you with a wonderful life, many friends, a musical ability few people have. Looking forward to hearing from you next year. HAPPY BIRTHDAY!!!!!!!!

  15. Elsie Butler on May 22nd, 2021 8:53 am

    Happy Birthday, Sir! Thank you for your service providing the freedom we have today.

  16. EVELYN L OWEN on May 22nd, 2021 7:37 am

    Happy Birthday to you, Mr. Edmonds. Well done.

  17. Nancy Peters on May 22nd, 2021 6:53 am

    Happy Birthday, Mr. Frank! Thank you for your service! God bless you! :)

  18. Gisell Perez on May 22nd, 2021 12:45 am

    Mr. Frank Happy Birthday! Thank you for your service sir. Wishing you the very best God bless you.

  19. Derek on May 22nd, 2021 12:04 am

    Happy 103 and thanks for your service!

  20. Pat Phillips on May 21st, 2021 11:32 pm

    Thank you for your service in World War II!! God bless you!!!!

  21. D capers on May 21st, 2021 10:00 pm

    God bless you on your specisl day! Happy birthday sir!

  22. Charles and Kristy Parker on May 21st, 2021 8:36 pm

    Happy Birthday! We wish you the best on your special day and thank you for your service. You are a wonderful person who ,I’m sure, must have amazing stories to tell. Hope you have a lovely day.

  23. Anne on May 21st, 2021 7:20 pm

    Sir, I believe you were at Zelica Grotto Hall some years ago with a couple of other Survivors of Pearl Harbor. It was a Great Honor to hear you and others speak of the time before the attack and afterward when all hands turned to fight back then help their injured and fallen mates.
    It is Wonderful that you have lived long and continue to stand as a Beacon of Freedom.
    God Bless YOU and God Bless the United States of America.

  24. Panhandler on May 21st, 2021 6:51 pm



  25. HAPPY on May 21st, 2021 6:43 pm


  26. Gloria Jones on May 21st, 2021 6:25 pm

    Happy birthday Frank !!!Thank you Brother Frank for your service to our country. You are such an Encouragement to me, as a choir member at Church. It’s amazing how strong your voice beams above the others !!May God continue to bless you and keep you singing Praises at Gonzalez United Methodist Church. You are an inspiration to many. Happy Birthday and pray you have many more special days‼️

  27. jonothan W. Taylor on May 21st, 2021 6:20 pm

    How cool is it that a Sailor Bandsman makes it to 103 !
    BRAVO from a retired Chief Master Ser !

  28. William Lightsey on May 21st, 2021 6:03 pm

    Thank you for your sacrifice and protecting our country
    Happy Birthday sir. You truly are the part of the greatest generation

  29. HT1 US Navy Retired on May 21st, 2021 4:36 pm

    A most Happy Birthday Shipmate!!! My first duty station in 1983 was on board the USS Jason AR-8 in Pearl Harbor, Hawai’i. I looked at the Arizona memorial with reverence every work day. Would love to meet you sometime and trade some scuttlebutt. Until then please accept a snappy hand salute on your 103rd Birthday. BRAVO ZULU!!

  30. Michael Atterbery on May 21st, 2021 4:25 pm

    Happy Birthday. Thank you for your service. My uncle Max Ring was a retired Chief Musician and my other uncle was on board the USS Maryland that day in December.

  31. Well on May 21st, 2021 3:01 pm

    Happy Birthday Sir !!!!
    May you have many more and thank you for your service !!!!

  32. Felix on May 21st, 2021 2:30 pm

    Happy birthday! Hope your doing well in these dreadful times. :)

  33. Carolyn and Keith Gwaltney on May 21st, 2021 2:00 pm

    Happy Birthday 103!!! Keith and I are so proud to call you “friend” and to attend Gonzalez UMC with you. We lived on Oahu 1967-69 and visited the Arizona Memorial and Pearl Harbor several times. Little did we know that we would get to know a survivor of that “day of infamy” in 1941. Thank you for your service. God bless you on this special day! Keith & Carolyn Gwaltney

  34. Keith and Carolyn Gwaltney on May 21st, 2021 1:20 pm

    Frank, we are so proud to call you friend and fellow church member at Gonzalez UMC. During Keith’s last 2 years in the Navy, we lived on the island of Oahu. We visited the Arizona Memorial several times. Little did we know that one day we would have a friend who survived that terrible “day of infamy.” God bless you for your service. Thank you for being such an inspiration and, most of all, for being our friend. Happy 103rd Birthday. Our love, Keith & Carolyn Gwaltney

  35. danny on May 21st, 2021 1:13 pm

    Our WWII vets, An American treasure. I cannot begin to imagine what he felt on that day! Thank you sir for your service and the productive life you have lived after the fact.

  36. Tish on May 21st, 2021 12:06 pm

    Happy birthday Frank. Thank you for your
    Service. Many happy returns.
    Keep on amazing us.

  37. Larry Wingard on May 21st, 2021 11:55 am

    THANk YOU for your service and a BIG HAPPY BIRTHDAY young man

  38. Arlene W Walsh on May 21st, 2021 11:28 am

    Just wanted to take a moment and wish you Mr. Frank a very Happy Birthday. What a proud moment in history this is for you. May God continue to Bless You and Thank
    You sir for your service to our great nation. May you enjoy your day and don’t eat
    too much cake.

  39. Brandon Nance on May 21st, 2021 11:18 am

    Happy birthday hero! Thank you for your service during one of our most troubled times. I am from pearl harbor and familiar with the struggles faced that day of which no one should have had to endure. Hope you have a joyus birthday celebration surrounded by loved ones

  40. Tammy Diaz on May 21st, 2021 10:36 am

    Happy Birthday!

  41. NavyDave on May 21st, 2021 10:23 am

    Happy Birthday, Sir and many more! Semper fortis!

  42. Happy on May 21st, 2021 10:11 am

    Happy Birthday Sir
    Thank you for your service.
    God Bless

  43. Tony on May 21st, 2021 9:44 am

    Happy Birthday Warrant
    I am a fellow french horn player and a retired Senior Chief.
    Far winds and following seas

  44. Jim on May 21st, 2021 9:33 am

    We salute you sir, Happy 103rd Birthday

  45. Clarke family on May 21st, 2021 9:14 am

    Happy Birthday from the Clarkes of Cantonment. We heard your story on the radio and had no idea you lived here – we are SO PROUD and honored to live nearby! Thank you thank you thank you for your service and patriotism for all your years YOUNG! Your story is an inspiration to us all. HAPPY BIRTHDAY!!

  46. Attaboy on May 21st, 2021 9:13 am

    Happy birthday, Sir. Wishing you fair winds and following seas.

  47. Ron D on May 21st, 2021 8:54 am

    ☆ Happy Birthday Sir ☆ Thank You for Your Service

  48. Ron D on May 21st, 2021 8:53 am

    ☆ Happy Birthday Sir☆ Thank You for Your Service

  49. carl and Sylvia Godwin on May 21st, 2021 8:48 am

    Happy birthday and God Bless you. Thank you for your service!

  50. Denny on May 21st, 2021 8:41 am

    Happy Birthday, Mr. Emond! I hope you have a great day celebrating your special day!
    My mom was a WAVE during WWII, serving here in Pensacola repairing aircraft instruments. Pearl Harbor was her inspiration to put her teaching career on hold and sign up. Those days women had to get a male relative’s signature to do so but her dad wouldn’t give it since he already had three sons serving (one at Pearl Harbor, too). So, she moved in with a brother in another state and convinced him to sign her papers!
    Thank you for your service keeping the morale up of your fellow sailors. I’m glad you survived that terrible day. Bless you and take care.

  51. JimC on May 21st, 2021 8:39 am

    Happy Birthday, Shipmate! I also served in Pearl Harbor, and more specifically, did a shore duty tour on Ford Island. I rode the smallboat shuttle out every morning past Battleship Row, and I never cease to be grateful for the sacrifice and service of yours, “The Greatest Generation”. Fair Winds and Following Seas, Frank!

  52. Citizen on May 21st, 2021 8:30 am

    Happy Birthday, Chief Warrant Officer Edmond!

    You are a Gentleman and a Patriot and we are all grateful for your service.

    God Bless You, Sir.

  53. Irene Daughtery on May 21st, 2021 8:30 am

    Happy Birthday Mr Frank!

  54. Lifendason on May 21st, 2021 8:27 am

    Happy Birthday Mr. Emond and thank you sir for your service and being that GREAT generation. Without men and women like you this country would have fallen a long time ago.

    God bless you sir and BZ!!!

  55. molino resident on May 21st, 2021 8:15 am


    You are a true American Hero in every sense of the word.

    I hope you have a wonderful, wonderful day.

  56. KENNY on May 21st, 2021 8:02 am

    Hey, Happy Birthday! HOOYAH!

    -AO2 VET-

  57. Mike J. on May 21st, 2021 8:01 am

    Happy Birthday and Thank you, Frank! Years of service to the USA and the Navy are very much appreciated! We have some World War 2 history in my family with an ancestor who died at the Naval Battle of Guadalcanal in 1942. The courage and sacrifice of the Greatest Generation far exceeds any other. Have a good day and God Bless!

  58. Sam on May 21st, 2021 7:53 am

    Very awesome, Happy Brithday!!

  59. Darryl lockerman on May 21st, 2021 7:42 am

    My grandfather also at pearl harbor was on USS Vestal, got to hear first hand stories of the attack, Charles Bransford was his name… Happy birthday

  60. Darryl lockerman on May 21st, 2021 7:41 am

    My grandfather also at pearl harbor was on USS Vestal, got to hear first hand stories of the attack, Charles Bransford was his name

  61. DD on May 21st, 2021 7:40 am

    Happy Birthday. Your story is encouraging.

  62. Mandy Grubbs on May 21st, 2021 7:38 am

    Happy Birthday, and thank you for your service sir!

  63. Lindsey on May 21st, 2021 7:35 am

    Happy happy birthday to you. Thank you for your service and lifelong dedication to your passion!

  64. SusanZ on May 21st, 2021 7:32 am

    Amazing man! I would enjoy talking with him. My grandfather Alexander Campbell was also at Pearl Harbor and went to the survivor reunions every year. (Wonder if he knew him?) — Happy Birthday Mr Frank! :-)

  65. Inigo Montoya on May 21st, 2021 7:13 am

    Happy Birthday sir! Thank you for your many years of service.

  66. Willene & Preston Bryan on May 21st, 2021 6:50 am

    Happy Birthday Mr. Frank Emond ! May God bless you with good health and blessed days ahead of you.

  67. Grateful American on May 21st, 2021 6:48 am

    Congratulations on your birthday. Thank you for serving! God bless. Prayers for another great year with your friends and loved ones.

    From North Carolina with love and appreciation.

  68. Gabe on May 21st, 2021 6:33 am

    The legend lives on

  69. Gabe on May 21st, 2021 6:30 am

    Happy 103rd birthday Frank

  70. Angela Heflin on May 21st, 2021 6:28 am

    Happy Birthday Mr. Frank!! What an honor it is to be able to send you birthday wishes!

  71. Brenda on May 21st, 2021 6:25 am

    Happy Birthday

  72. Lorene on May 21st, 2021 6:24 am

    We wish you a very Happy 103rd Birthday.
    God Bless you and keep you.

  73. Mary Jane on May 21st, 2021 6:24 am

    Happy 103rd Birthday, Mr. Frank! Thank you for being a remarkable man and for your service. My father-in-law was on the Arizona up until just a few months before the Pearl Harbor attack. What an amazing life you have lived! You truly are a “music man”! It was great to read just a few of the amazing facts of your accomplishments. And you are still encouraging others! We need more Mr. Frank Edmonds. Enjoy your special day. Party on!

  74. Klondike Kid on May 21st, 2021 6:15 am

    Happy birthday Mr. Frank !

  75. MAH on May 21st, 2021 6:04 am

    Happy birthday sir.

  76. Gene on May 21st, 2021 5:12 am

    Thank you for your service sir… I am honored to live even in the same area as you!

  77. JTV on May 21st, 2021 5:08 am

    Happy Birthday Sir

  78. Alan on May 21st, 2021 4:33 am

    Happy Birthday Frank.

  79. Fred on May 21st, 2021 2:50 am

    Happy Birthday Mr. Emond! I would love to hear some of your reflections on the past 100 years.

  80. BRING IT ON on May 21st, 2021 12:40 am

    What an accomplished patriot.

  81. Bonnie Exner on May 21st, 2021 12:27 am

    Hubby Craig and I were just talking about Mr.Edmond this week..we listened to his story first at MOLINO MIDTOWN HISTORICAL SOCIETY and then he shared his WORLD WAR II
    experiences at one of BARRINEAU PARK HISTORICAL SOCIETY annual Christmas dinner 5 years ago..we treasured his presentation because he actually lived through one of 20th Century most memorable events and his rendition made it so vivid and real..HAPPY 103TH BIRTHDAY,MR.FRANK EDMOND.

Have a comment on this story?

We welcome your comments on this story, but there are some rules to follow::

(1) Be Nice. No comments that slander another, no racism, no sexism, no personal attacks.

(2) No Harrassing Comments. If someone says something bad about you, don't respond. That's childish.

(3) No Libel. That's saying something is not true about someone. Don't do it.

(4) Keep it clean. Nothing vulgar, obscene or sexually related. No profanity or obvious substitutions. Period.

(5) NorthEscambia.com reserves the right to remove any comments that violate our rules or we think to be inappropriate. We are not responsible for what is posted. Comments may not appear right away until they are approved by a moderator.

(6) Limit your comments to the subject in this story only, and limit comments to 300 words or less. Do not post copyrighted material. Comments will not be added to stories that are over 30 days old.

(7) No posts may advertise a commercial business or political group, or link to another commercial web site or political site of any kind.