Forum Deputy Chief
When the Japanese started bombing Pearl Harbor on December 7, 1941, the HFD quickly responded to the crisis. The first of three responding HFD companies arrived to find Hickam Field's fire station hit by bombs. Honolulu firefighters worked tirelessly to extinguish flames and save as many U.S. planes as possible, but the second wave of Japanese Zero aircraft approached. Hoseman Harry Tuck Lee Pang was shot and killed; Captains Thomas Macy and John Carreira died in a bomb blast. Six other firefighters were injured. The HFD lists among its members nine men who were awarded the Order of the Purple Heart, including three dead members who were awarded the medal in 1984. This made the HFD the only fire department on American soil whose members were attacked by a foreign nation and were awarded Purple Hearts relating to their duties. This honor is now only awarded to members of the Armed Forces wounded in battle.
To this day, the Honolulu Fire Department is the only fire department on American soil whose members were attacked by a foreign nation.