Local Pearl Harbor exhibit displayed at Pikeville museum

Pike County native Jack Buckley's posthumous Purple Heart is among the items on display. Buckley was on the USS Arizona, which was bombed by the Japanese.
Published: Dec. 7, 2021 at 10:49 PM EST
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PIKEVILLE, Ky. (WSAZ) - Tuesday marked the 80th anniversary of the Japanese attack on the U.S. naval base at Pearl Harbor.

A new exhibit at the Big Sandy Heritage Center Museum in downtown Pikeville aims to share the story of how four men from Pike County were part of the day that lives in infamy.

Three of those men were killed. Millard Burk Jr. and Harding Blackburn were on the USS Oklahoma, and Jack Buckley was on the USS Arizona, which which was bombed and sunk.

Family of one of the sailors recently donated several items to the museum from his connection to the historic event, including a telegram listing him as missing and his posthumous Purple Heart.

Pike County native Homer Robinson was also on the USS Oklahoma but survived and went on to operate a service station and work as a court bailiff before dying in 1998.

On the 80th anniversary of the attack, chairman of the museum board Brad Slone says it’s vital to remember the local connection.

“I hope they take away that we have a history of local people interested in serving their country,” Slone said. “It’s important for articles of history to go back to the communities where they come from. The Buckley family donated this to us with that in mind, and we’re very appreciative of it.”

Slone says the exhibit is expected to remain a permanent part of the museum.

For more information including museum hours, TAP HERE.

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