Great Clips: Remember Pearl Harbor

The Greatest Generations Foundation travels 14 World War II survivors to scene of historic attack, including last known African-American survivor and famed Dallas homicide detective with role in Kennedy investigation

December 07, 2015 // // Denver – On Dec. 7, 1941, Nelson Mitchell was asleep in bed aboard the USS Jarvis, when the attack on Pearl Harbor commenced. As he jumped out of his bunk, he saw that the whole bay was on fire. Some 74 years later, Mitchell is the last remaining African-American survivor of the attack on the USS Jarvis.

The 93 year-old Navy veteran is one of 14 World War II survivors traveling to Pearl Harbor this week on an all-expenses-paid trip funded by The Greatest Generations Foundation with event sponsor Great Clips. The 14 veterans are taking part in the 105th program of The Greatest Generations Foundation, a 501(c)3 charity based in Denver.

From Dec. 3 to 8, 2015, these 14 veterans will be in Hawaii to remember Pearl Harbor. While there, they will participate in numerous activities to commemorate the 74th anniversary of the attacks on American installations at the island of Oahu, Hawaii.

Throughout the week surrounding the anniversary of Pearl Harbor on Dec. 7, veterans will meet with local schools, visit national cemeteries and attend a few sporting events. The group will also participate in the annual Pearl Harbor International Ceremony & Memorial Parade to honor and remember the selfless courage of all World War II veterans.

Among the returning veterans is Nelson Mitchell who joined the Navy in 1940 and was assigned to the U.S.S Jarvis, a destroyer. At that time in the Navy, African-Americans could serve only as a cook or a captain’s steward, assisting in whatever daily necessities the captain had.

The Jarvis was stationed at Pearl Harbor on Dec. 7, 1941. Mitchell was in bed when the Japanese started bombing. “I got up out of my bunk, and the ship was shaking. I looked out and the whole bay was full of fire.” Mitchell immediately got to work and did his job. “I didn’t have a battle station, but I did stay in the pantry and waited on the officers until the bombing was over.”

Great Clips, the world’s largest salon brand, is primary sponsor for the 2015 Pearl Harbor trip. “We’re honored to support The Greatest Generations Foundation,” said Great Clips Chairman Ray Barton. “It’s inspiring to hear the stories from these men who fought heroically and sacrificed so much to protect our freedom. The work of this organization is truly special. Not only is the Remember Pearl Harbor event a great way to thank these veterans, but it’s a chance to listen to their experiences and pass on an important piece of history to future generations.”

The Greatest Generations Foundation honors our nation’s veterans through its battlefield programs, in which veterans return to the battlefields where they served. The goal of this program is to raise awareness of the selfless courage all World War II veterans exercised when they were called to duty, in hopes that future generations will never forget their sacrifices or those who were left behind.

Over the last 11 years, The Greatest Generations Foundation has returned more than 3,000 World War II veterans to the battlegrounds on annual journeys to Pearl Harbor, Normandy and Iwo Jima, along with missions to the Pacific battlegrounds of Guam, Saipan, Tinian, Tarawa and Okinawa to name a few. While these voyages back to the battlefields are often emotional, they provide veterans a measure of closure from their war experiences, the chance to share in the gratitude for their service and a venue to educate others.

Starting in 2016, The Greatest Generations Foundation will begin battlefield programs to Vietnam, to honor and remember the selfless courage all Vietnam War veterans exercised when they were called to duty. For more information visit

List of veterans taking part in the 2015 Remember Pearl Harbor program:

  • Jack Holder, Age 94, Sun Lakes, Arizona
  • Robert Addobati, US Navy, Age 93, Sacramento, CA
  • Thomas Petso, US Army, Age 95, Aurora, CO
  • Nelson Mitchell, US Navy, Age 93, Peoria, AZ
  • Michael “Mickey” Ganitch, US Navy, Age 95, San Leandro, CA
  • Emery Arsenault, US Navy, Age 94, Peabody, MA
  • Lawrence Parry, US Army, Age 95
  • Robert Blum, US Army, Age 95, Munds Park, AZ
  • Armando Chick Galella, US Army, Age 95, Tarrytown, NY
  • Joseph Reilly, US Army, Age 94 (Not a Pearl Harbor Survivor)
  • Peter du Pre, Age 92, Waterbury, CT (Not a Pearl Harbor Survivor)
  • E. Bruce Heilman, US Marines, Age 90, Richmond, VA (Not a Pearl Harbor Survivor)
  • Arthur Staymates, US Army, Ago 90, Hagerstown, MD (Not a Pearl Harbor Survivor)

To arrange an interview with one of the veterans visiting Hawaii, contact Brandon Cope, or visit

About The Greatest Generations Foundation

The Greatest Generations Foundation is a 501c3 non-profit dedicated to honoring the sacrifices of veterans and ensuring that their legacies are recorded and retold in perpetuity to future generations. Founded in 2004, The Greatest Generations Foundation (TGGF) is the only non-profit organization devoted to helping veterans return to their battlefields and enabling closure of their war experiences while at the same time educating youth about key war events and their relevance. TGGF works to ensure that the stories and lessons of war are not forgotten, even when there is no one left to tell them. Preserving the legacy of these heroic men and women happens most effectively through education and the retelling of stories to younger generations. TGGF's educational programs take a dynamic, experiential approach, allowing learners from all backgrounds to explore the values and beliefs that Americans and their Allies embraced during wartime. They address the extraordinary history of sacrifice and the noble accomplishments of those who served.

About Great Clips

Great Clips, Inc. was established in 1982 in Minneapolis. Today, Great Clips has more than 3,800 salons throughout the United States and Canada, making it the world’s largest salon brand. Great Clips is 100 percent franchised, and salons are owned locally by more than 1,200 franchisees across North America. Great Clips franchisees employ nearly 35,000 stylists who receive ongoing training to learn the Great Clips customer care system and advanced technical skills. As a walk-in salon, Great Clips provides value-priced, high-quality haircare for men, women and children. No appointments are needed, and salons are open nights and weekends. Getting a great haircut is more convenient than ever with Great Clips’ Online Check-In and Clip Notes®. To check in online, visit or download the app for Android and iPhone. For more information about Great Clips or to find a location near you, visit

SOURCE Great Clips

Media Contact:

Sue Yannello

Brandon Cope
The Greatest Generations Foundation


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Great Clips, Inc. was established in 1982 in Minneapolis. Today, Great Clips has more than 3,800 salons throughout the United States and Canada, making it the world's largest salon brand.


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