Veterans Day Salute: One Spokane Man's Story of Growing Up In Pe - Spokane, North Idaho News & Weather KHQ.com

Veterans Day Salute: One Spokane Man's Story of Growing Up In Pearl Harbor

Spokane resident Bob Snider remembers the attack on Pearl Harbor vividly Spokane resident Bob Snider remembers the attack on Pearl Harbor vividly

He grew up in Pearl Harbor more than 70 years ago, but for Bob Snider, the memories of life on the island are still fresh.

His Spokane home is covered in photos and memorabilia from those days, including a picture of him as a child swimming in Pearl Harbor with his father, photos of his childhood home, his mother's tropical artwork and memories of the day that changed everything.

"There was always noise in the harbor," Snider recalled about the morning of December 7, 1941.

He was outside eating mulberries when he heard something that wasn't right.

"I don't know if it was the Arizona blowing up or not, but I decided I better run out and see what was happening on the water," Snider told KHQ's Kelsey Watts.

What was happening was one of the largest attacks ever on American Soil and it was unfolding before his own eyes about a mile from his home.

"My bedroom window faced Ford Island and we could see the Japanese dive bombers coming down," Snider said, adding that parents made him go back inside as the three watched the attack. "We were all speechless, just looking. We never really thought it was going to happen."

Snider was too young to understand what all the smoke and chaos meant.

But when the radio signaled the attack was real and that military members should return to the base, a bullet penetrated their home and his father nearly lost his life.

"As he was getting ready to leave the house a Japanese bullet missed him by three feet," Snider said. "Then I was scared, then I was crying, then I knew this was real."

He later collected a shoebox full of fragments from American anti-aircraft shells that were fired that day during the second wave of the Japanese attack. Today, he only has one left.

He remembers that civilians were evacuated to safer ground, but because the family car was gone, Snider and his mother were mistakenly left behind.

"When mother and I were alone in the middle of the Pacific Ocean and we were scared to death, all we had was what the Japanese didn't destroy, and that wasn't much," he added. "The fear was incredible."

He remembers school was closed for three months and when it finally resumed they practiced drills for weapons and chemical attacks, fearing the Japanese would return.

In August of 1942 he went to California to stay with family before his parents could leave Hawaii. The opening of what's now Fairchild AFB in Spokane eventually brought them up to the Pacific Northwest.

On this Veterans Day, Snider met with the small group of survivors from that day who now live in the Inland Northwest. There are only seven surviving Pearl Harbor veterans in Spokane and one other civilian survivor.

"[Service men and women] put their lives on the line for the rest of us and we're lucky it's being done," he added.

  • Most Popular StoriesMost Popular StoriesMore>>

  • Searchers return to campsite where toddler went missing

    Searchers return to campsite where toddler went missing

    Sunday, May 21 2017 5:45 PM EDT2017-05-21 21:45:55 GMT

    BOISE, Idaho (AP) - Almost two years after a toddler disappeared during a camping trip with his family, investigators plan to return to the campsite to search for new evidence.  Lemhi County Sheriff Steve Penner told KTVB-TV last week that deputies will return to the campground outside of Leadore, Idaho once the weather improves.

    >>

    BOISE, Idaho (AP) - Almost two years after a toddler disappeared during a camping trip with his family, investigators plan to return to the campsite to search for new evidence.  Lemhi County Sheriff Steve Penner told KTVB-TV last week that deputies will return to the campground outside of Leadore, Idaho once the weather improves.

    >>
  • WATCH: Mom's video warning others of tick paralysis goes viral

    WATCH: Mom's video warning others of tick paralysis goes viral

    Sunday, May 21 2017 7:13 PM EDT2017-05-21 23:13:48 GMT

    LA GRANDE, Ore. - We've told you about tick paralysis before on KHQ, but one Oregon mother's scary video of her daughter showing the effects of tick paralysis has gone viral on Facebook since it was first posted last week.

    >>

    LA GRANDE, Ore. - We've told you about tick paralysis before on KHQ, but one Oregon mother's scary video of her daughter showing the effects of tick paralysis has gone viral on Facebook since it was first posted last week.

    >>
  • Spokane cat is probably bigger than your dog

    Spokane cat is probably bigger than your dog

    Monday, May 22 2017 3:03 PM EDT2017-05-22 19:03:45 GMT

    KHQ.COM - An average house cat weighs between 7-10 pounds but one Spokane woman has a cat whose size is almost unheard of. Out of the corner of your eye, Ollie might be mistaken for a dog... he's that big! Not your normal house cat, Ollie is a Savannah cat, a hybrid breed that's a cross between a serval cat and a domestic cat. So while it's not surprising that he's bigger than a domestic cat, his size is still shocking.

    >>

    KHQ.COM - An average house cat weighs between 7-10 pounds but one Spokane woman has a cat whose size is almost unheard of. Out of the corner of your eye, Ollie might be mistaken for a dog... he's that big! Not your normal house cat, Ollie is a Savannah cat, a hybrid breed that's a cross between a serval cat and a domestic cat. So while it's not surprising that he's bigger than a domestic cat, his size is still shocking.

    >>
HD DOPPLER 6i
/
  • Top Stories from KHQHomeMore>>

  • UK police: 'a number of fatalities' at Grande concert

    UK police: 'a number of fatalities' at Grande concert

    Monday, May 22 2017 7:01 PM EDT2017-05-22 23:01:30 GMT

    LONDON (AP) - Police says there are "a number of fatalities" after reports of an explosion at an Ariana Grande concert in northern England.      Police advised the public to avoid the area around the Manchester Arena Monday night.      There were no immediate details of what happened during the concert by the American singer.

    >>

    LONDON (AP) - Police says there are "a number of fatalities" after reports of an explosion at an Ariana Grande concert in northern England.      Police advised the public to avoid the area around the Manchester Arena Monday night.      There were no immediate details of what happened during the concert by the American singer.

    >>
  • Fairchild AFB to hold public meeting on contamination

    Fairchild AFB to hold public meeting on contamination

    Monday, May 22 2017 6:55 PM EDT2017-05-22 22:55:55 GMT

    FAIRCHILD AIR FORCE BASE, Wash. - Fairchild Air Force Base says they will be hosting a Water Contamination Public meeting on Tuesday, May 23, at 6 p.m. in the Medical Lake High School gymnasium. Experts will be on hand from Fairchild, the Air Force Civil Engineer Center, Environmental Protection Agency and Spokane Regional Health District to provide additional information and address questions and concerns.

    >>

    FAIRCHILD AIR FORCE BASE, Wash. - Fairchild Air Force Base says they will be hosting a Water Contamination Public meeting on Tuesday, May 23, at 6 p.m. in the Medical Lake High School gymnasium. Experts will be on hand from Fairchild, the Air Force Civil Engineer Center, Environmental Protection Agency and Spokane Regional Health District to provide additional information and address questions and concerns.

    >>
  • Man dies in California botulism outbreak from nacho-cheese

    Man dies in California botulism outbreak from nacho-cheese

    Monday, May 22 2017 6:26 PM EDT2017-05-22 22:26:29 GMT

    SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) - California authorities say one man is dead in an apparent botulism outbreak stemming from nacho-cheese dip sold at a gas station. Health officials on Monday confirmed one death among what the state says is 10 people sickened by the cheese dip.      Authorities did not identify the dead man.

    >>

    SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) - California authorities say one man is dead in an apparent botulism outbreak stemming from nacho-cheese dip sold at a gas station. Health officials on Monday confirmed one death among what the state says is 10 people sickened by the cheese dip.      Authorities did not identify the dead man.

    >>