PEARL HARBOR, Hawaii (KHON2) — Family and loved ones visited Pearl Harbor on Wednesday, Dec. 8, to see the commissioning of the USS Daniel Inouye.

The ship itself is a state-of-the-art military machine with air, surface and subsurface capabilities.

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The director of Naval History and Heritage Command said, the USS Inouye is leaps and bounds ahead of its predecessors.

Oh, these ships are awesome. The capability of these ships compared to what was here 80 years ago is just mind-boggling.

U.s. navy Rear Admiral (ret) sam cox, director of naval history and heritage command

The Arleigh Burke-class destroyer will sail in Indo-Pacific waters to maintain international diplomacy and — if needed — defend the American values of freedom and democracy.

Rep. Kai Kahele said, the sailors onboard will now embody the vision of one of Hawaii’s greatest statesmen.

“His legacy will live on through the brave men and women who will serve their country on this vessel.”

Rep. Kai Kahele

“I wish the officers and the crew of the USS Daniel Inouye, good luck and Godspeed,” Rep. Kahele said.

Sen. Inouye’s son, Ken Inouye, spoke of how Japanese Americans were designated as enemy aliens after the attack on Pearl Harbor — unfit to serve. President Roosevelt changed that, however, and allowed Japanese Americans to volunteer.

A young Daniel Inouye was among those with the courage to enlist.

“Because they believed in America when America did not believe in them, and for that they were willing to fight in order to fight.”

Ken Inouye, Sen. Daniel Inouye’s son

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“America is premised upon this more perfect union,” Ken Inouye said. “Always striving for that perfection, but never reaching it because they know it’s impossible, they know it’s a moving target.”