Hundreds flock to public reopening of USS Missouri
Hundreds of people descended on Pearl Harbor today for the reopening of the historic USS Missouri, which recently returned from a three-month, $18 million stay in drydock.
The Battleship Missouri Memorial marked the occasion with a salute to volunteers that was attended by Gov. Linda Lingle and Pearl Harbor Naval Shipyard commander Capt. Gregory Thomas.
"The outpouring of support to preserve this important part of our nation's history is a tribute to the American men and women who fought with courage and pride during World War II, as well as to those who continue to follow in their footsteps," Lingle said.
The memorial is offering free admittance today to Hawaiçi residents and military personnel.
The extensive maintenance and restoration project included refurbishment of the hull, installation of cathodic and humidity detection technology, and a fresh coat of paint, as well as installation of educational signage, tour routes, and public restroom facilities. Work continues on bathrooms facilities, the ship's deck and the anchor chain.
Memorial president Michael Carr said the reopening of the ship brought "a great sense of relief."
"This ship is alive," Carr said. "You have only to walk the decks to get the sense that it's alive."