Early Childhood

Transcripts available in the following languages:

I was born in Santa Maria, California in 1934. In fact, my birthday was a week ago. I am 80 years old now.

My father, by the way, he had an unusual history because he was an Issei immigrant from Wakayama Prefecture, but he had attended Waseda University. He came to this country, and he went to the University of Utah, and so he is a graduate of the University of Utah. But after that, sometime after that, he and my mother, they settled in Santa Maria, California, where he was the… I guess you would call it the executive director of an agricultural co-op in the Santa Maria Valley, where I was born in 1934. He died while I was still oh… 4 years old.

So at that time, I had 3 sisters. So there were 4 of us kids, and my mother was a widow then. I was about 4 years old, and my mother moved us to Los Angeles. So I grew up mostly in Los Angeles.

When the war started, 1941, I was what… 7 years old I guess. And shortly thereafter, in May of ‘42, we were… what’s the word they use…evacuated to the relocation camp at Poston, Arizona and spent the war years  in Poston, Arizona from May ’42 till August 1945.

When we returned to the Los Angeles area and I lived here ever since, except for taking time off to be in the military and to go to school. Otherwise, I have lived my entire life in Southern California. 

Date: July 2, 2014
Location: California, US
Interviewer: Sakura Kato
Contributed by: Watase Media Arts Center, Japanese American National Museum; Japanese American Bar Association

1934 arizona california incarceration Poston Prefecture santa maria Wakayama WWII

Nikkei Heroes: Trailblazers, Role Models, and Inspirations

Read the Nikkei Heroes stories and help select the Nima-kai community favorite >>

Get updates

Sign up for email updates

Journal feed
Events feed
Comments feed

Support this project

Discover Nikkei

Discover Nikkei is a place to connect with others and share the Nikkei experience. To continue to sustain and grow this project, we need your help!

Ways to help >>

A project of the Japanese American National Museum

Major support by The Nippon Foundation