American Pilot Who Dismissed Initial Pearl Harbor Report Dies at 96

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An American pilot who dismissed initial reports of what turned out to be the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor has died at age 96.

Kermit Tyler was the Army Air Forces' first lieutenant on temporary duty at Ft. Shafter's radar information center in Hawaii on Dec. 7, 1941, when two privates reporting seeing an unusually large blip on their radar screen, indicating a large number of aircraft about 132 miles away and fast approaching.

Many questioned his decision for years, and the 1970 movie "Tora! Tora! Tora!" portrayed him in an unflattering light. Audiences watching a documentary at the Pearl Harbor Visitors Center theater still groan when they hear Tyler's response to the radar report.

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