New U.S. Navy submarines will revive the names of the USS Arizona and USS Oklahoma, two of the biggest casualties of the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor during World War II, officials said.
Acting Secretary of the Navy Thomas Modly announced nuclear, Virginia-class attack submarines will carry the names, The Honolulu Star-Advertiser reported Monday.
The battleships were badly damaged during the surprise attack on the naval base at Pearl Harbor in Hawaii by Japanese air forces on Dec. 7, 1941.
Most of the Navy's personnel casualties in the attack were on the two ships docked near Honolulu.
The fast-attack submarines will be designated USS Oklahoma, SSN-802, and USS Arizona, SSN-803, Modly said in a statement.
"It is my fondest wish that the citizens of the great states of Arizona and Oklahoma will understand and celebrate our Navy's desire to memorialize the 1,177 heroes who perished in USS Arizona (BB-39) and the 429 more in USS Oklahoma (BB-37) in Pearl Harbor, on Dec. 7, 1941," Modly said.
About 1.8 million people annually visit the Pearl Harbor National Memorial, which includes the USS Arizona, USS Oklahoma and USS Utah memorials, six officer bungalows, three mooring quays, and the Pearl Harbor Visitor Center.