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Nikkei Names: Writing Workshop in Seattle

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Mitsu Beni Akiyama Sundvall

My parents never revealed meaning of my name, except that my 2nd name, Beni is the one my grandfather made up for my mother. Grandpa was a poet, socialist/anarchist (in plot to assassinate emperor) which might account for mom's name Beni, which means red. My big sister's name is Emi/Amy & my three little brothers have totally English names (Kensey, Donald Terrance, & Dennis Richard (mama wanted her boys to have lively Irish personalities (as opposed to quiet Japanese one))

As a child my name was anglicized to Mitsi & I knew when I finished high school I would be my own person & become Mitsu.

I worked in China imports for ten years & the Chinese interpreted my name as Kwan, which means light, & I like that.

Based on this original

Mitsu Beni Akiyama Sundvall
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Photo taken and name story provided on September 20, 2014 at the Wing Luke Museumas a part of Discover Nikkei’s workshop warm-up excercise in conjunction with the Nikkei Names: Taro, ... More »


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