In his own words:
I was assigned to the 42nd Bomb Squadron, 11th Bomb Group (H), Hickam Field at the time of the attack. It was a typical Sunday morning in the peacetime Army. Everyone was taking it easy. Ed Finn of Massachusetts and I knew that a flight of B-17s were due to arrive that morning. We were up and getting ready to leave and watch their arrival. We heard several explosions, and looked out the window on the Pearl Harbor side of the barracks and saw a low flying plane. As it banked around to the right, we could see the Japanese rising sun on the fuselage. We were on the third floor of the barracks, and immediately rushed down the stairs and started across the road toward the ball field. The armament school was nearby, and Ed and I and a few others broke into the school. We obtained a .50 cal. machine gun and ammunition, then ran across the street to the ball diamond. Several machine guns, both .50 cal. and .30 cal. were obtained in this same way by others.
The aircraft that passed over the ball field came from the direction of the flight line and headed toward the harbor. The altitude of these aircraft was about 75 feet maximum. We were bombed, and as the planes banked around you could plainly see the pilot wearing goggles and helmet. As I swung the .50 cal. toward the approaching aircraft, I could see smoke from the flight line, debris, and fire from the bombed hangars and aircraft that I knew were parked on the ramp. We saw B-17s that were part of the flight arriving from the mainland attempting to land. As I swung the .50 cal. around to follow the Japanese aircraft, I would end up facing the harbor. I could see the results of the tremendous explosions, thick black smoke, flames and Japanese planes diving over the harbor
As far as damage to the Japanese aircraft, I remember we could follow the tracers into the passing planes. When I fired at one particular plane, I could see thick black smoke pour out of the cowling, then it banked out to sea and began a slow climb out. I do not know if the pilot went down or not. He could have made it back to the carrier, or possibly have gone down at sea. Unless we could see the plane blow up as we were firing at it, we were not allowed to claim it as a shoot down. At some time during the engagement, I was hit by something; maybe a bomb fragment, or possibly a piece of debris thrown up by a bomb blast. It wasn’t anything serious, so I continued with what I was doing.
The lowest flying Japanese plane that I saw during the attack was a torpedo bomber that was not much higher than the barracks. It seemed as though every machine gun on the field was firing into it. The action took place over roughly a two-hour period, during which there was utter confusion. After the attack was over, we were moved to another location near the base headquarters. Two days later we were relieved and returned to our own organization. Following my return to the mainland I was assigned to the CBI theater of operations. In 1942, Ed Finn and I were awarded the Silver Star and Purple Heart. I was discharged on June 5, 1945, a week short of five years of active duty.
Story published in Pearl Survivors: Eyewitness Accounts in their own words. Pearl Harbor, December 7, 1941, Salute to U.S. Veterans Who SURVIVED the Date “That Will Live in Infamy” by Dick Jensen, 2001