Pearl Harbor ships join nationwide bell ringing to mark centennial of WWI’s end

ll the ships pier side in Pearl Harbor will ring their ship bells at 11 a.m. today as part of a nationwide initiative to commemorate Veterans Day and the 100th anniversary of the conclusion of World War I.

Nov. 11 marks the anniversary of the signing of the armistice that ended hostilities in WWI.

“To mark this anniversary, the United States WWI Centennial Commission is calling on Americans across the nation to toll bells at 11 a.m. on 11 November in remembrance of those who served in WWI,” the Navy said. “The tolling of bells is a traditional expression of honor and remembrance, and ‘Bells of Peace’ is a national event to honor the 116,516 Americans who died and over 200,000 who were wounded in the war.”

WWI, known at the time as the “Great War,” ended at the 11th hour of the 11th day on the 11th month in 1918. Armistice Day was established by President Woodrow Wilson on Nov. 11, 1919, to honor Americans who served during the war.

The name was changed to Veterans Day in 1978 as the day when all veterans are honored.

Local commemorations include activities and entertainment at the Waikiki Natatorium War Memorial starting at 9 a.m., culminating with fireworks at 8:45 p.m. (hawaiiworldwar1.org)

The USS Battleship Missouri Memorial will honor Korean War veterans at a sunset ceremony that begins at 4:30 p.m. The event is free and open to the public, with shuttle service available from the Pearl Harbor Visitor Center. (ussmissouri.org/events/veterans-day)