Pearl Harbor survivor Glenn Lane interred at USS Arizona Memorial

Brandon Bosworth
Contributing Writer

Glenn Lane served aboard the USS Arizona on Dec. 7, 1941. Unlike many of his shipmates, he survived the ship’s sinking and went on to have a military career spanning 30 years and three wars.

Lane passed away on Dec. 10, 2011, nearly 70 years to the day after the attack on Pearl Harbor. On Sept. 12, his ashes were interred on the sunken ship at a ceremony held at the USS Arizona Memorial.

The ceremony was a rare event. There have been only 36 interments of remains at the USS Arizona Memorial. The Navy began interring and scattering ashes of Dec. 7 survivors at Pearl Harbor in the late 1980s. Only survivors of the Arizona and the Utah may return in death to their ships.

“These are the only burial services like this in the world,” said Jim Taylor, Pearl Harbor survivors Navy liaison. There are only 13 known survivors of Arizona still living.

“Glenn Lane is going back to his ship,” said Daniel Martinez, historian at the USS Arizona Memorial, during the ceremony. “He is going to rejoin his shipmates.”

A longtime resident of Oak Harbor, Wash., Glenn Lane worked as a seaplane radioman on Arizona. One of the bombs hitting the ship blew him off the deck. Lane swam to the USS Nevada, which soon received hits by bombs and a torpedo, forcing the ship aground.

After Pearl Harbor, Lane served as a member of combat air crews. He retired as Whidbey Island Naval Air Station’s first command master chief after three decades in the Navy.

Historian Daniel Martinez began the proceedings by welcoming those in attendance, including several members of Lane’s fami ly. “Glenn Lane was a personal friend of mine,” said Martinez. “Today, I think of his sense of humor, his love for his family, and what he meant to us at the USS Arizona Memorial.”

Capt. Lawrence Scruggs, deputy commander of Pearl Harbor Naval Shipyard, also spoke, describing Lane as a man who “never wavered in his faith or his spirit that day.”

Lt. Rick Tiff, Chaplain Corps, Pearl Harbor Memorial Chapel, led the committal service. “Master Chief Lane was a hero,” Tiff said. “But he was also a man of great influence, as can be seen by the number of people here today.”

After a moment of silence, Navy and National Park Service divers took Glenn Lane’s remains down to Arizona and placed his ashes in one of the gun turrets. The ceremony ended with a rifle salute, a bugler playing “Taps,” and Sailors presenting an American flag to his family.

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Category: Life & Leisure