While Pearl Harbor in Hawaii was being attacked by Japanese airplanes on Dec. 7, 1941, Ruth Anderson was in a Salt Lake City hospital, bringing a new baby girl named Jane into the world.
Seventy-five years later, Jane Anderson Reynolds still remembers her mother talk about hearing the news of the bombings at Pearl Harbor while still in the recovery room.
“My mother said there was a paperboy outside yelling that Pearl Harbor has been attacked by the Japanese,” said Reynolds, a 1964 graduate of Brigham Young University who now lives in San Bernardino, California. “I don’t think paperboys read the headlines out loud for people anymore. The world has changed a lot since then.”
Reynolds, a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, mentioned that a lot of other things have changed in the world since she was born in 1941, including a lack of knowledge about Pearl Harbor Day.
“Younger people I’ve worked with didn’t really know what Pearl Harbor Day was,” said Reynolds, who was a clinical laboratory scientist. “They would ask me, ‘What’s that? Why was that important?’ I was surprised to hear that they don’t seem to think these things are important for us to remember.”
Jane Reynolds’ husband of over 52 years, Randy Reynolds, said that this lack of historical knowledge worried him as well.
“If we don’t learn from history, we might end up repeating it,” he said.
Throughout her 75 years of life and 52 years of marriage, Jane Reynolds has respected Pearl Harbor Day. Her birthday celebrations include going to lunch with friends.
However, she has always found the greatest joy in remembering something her mother told her — that in the midst of receiving the devastating news that impacted the nation, her mother's first priority was still her newborn baby.
With this perspective, Jane Reynolds has become more focused on the love of Jesus Christ and the commitment she shares with her husband through eternal marriage.
“I know that Christ cares about us and loves us and wants us to be happy,” Jane Reynolds said. “(This is why) he gives us lots of sources to increase that happiness.”