Seventy-two years to the day that Japan attacked Pearl Harbor, plunging the United States into World War II, about 50 survivors of the assault paused to honor those killed.

Alvis Taylor, 90, was serving as an Army medic when the attack began. His superiors, who were doctors, rushed to hospitals to care for the wounded and left him in charge. He went to Pearl Harbor, about 18 miles south of his Army post at Schofield Barracks, with dozens of ambulances.

"I remember everything that happened that day," Taylor said grimly.

A crowd of about 2,500 joined the survivors at Pearl Harbor to honor those killed and those who fired back, rescued the burned and went on to serve during the war. Roughly 2,400 sailors, Marines and soldiers were killed at Pearl Harbor and other military installations on the island of Oahu in the Dec. 7, 1941, attack.

Hawaii Gov. Neil Abercrombie and Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer were among those attending.

Brewer said it was an honor to be there among the survivors.

"Pearl Harbor was such a horrific tragedy in the U.S., but it makes me proud to know that the men here are the fabric of what America is made of," Brewer said in a statement after the ceremony.