This is a very sad story. On May 6, the USS Arizona Memorial closed when a boat operator noticed cracks in the supporting structure. After repairs, the cracks returned, and indicated a serious problem.
"There is a brow or an edge where the visitor ramp meets the memorial, and at that point, there's been some fissures located on the exterior," said Jay Blount, a spokesman for the World War II Valor in the Pacific National Monument. "After further investigation on the interior, it was determined that the structure is not supporting the loading ramp the way that we need."
One of the highlights of my one and only trip to Hawaii was a visit to this memorial. It's one of the few places where you can get a very real touch of history, and a sense of the tragedy of war. Over 1,100 sailors are entombed beneath Pearl Harbor under the memorial, and the hull of the Arizona still leaks oil, which rises to the surface in small blobs.
I took the picture of the American flag flying through the "bridge" in 2008. It remains one of my treasured memories, and one of the symbols of the sacrifice made by American troops we honor on Memorial Day.
It's sad that the memorial is closed, and I hope that our government does everything it can to reopen this sacred place very soon.