As we begin the new millennium there remains a need for our organization, the Watsonville-Santa Cruz chapter of the Japanese American Citizens League.
You may have had the good fortune of being spared the feeling of human indignity but there are so many, young and old, who are confronted with racism, bigotry, and harassment situations even today.
Please join us in supporting those individuals, groups, and issues that need our help. Our JACL is an advocate for human and civil rights for all Americans. Our mission statement is, "to fight discrimination and to insure the well being of anyone who is victimized by social injustice," as stated by John Tateishi, our National JACL Executive Director.
Welcome to our website-the official on-line presence of the Watsonville-Santa Cruz Chapter of the Japanese American Citizens League (JACL).
Here we are in the fourth year of the 21st Century. Even though we left the 20th Century, there are many people who have failed thus far to leave some their old social and cultural stereotypes and attitudes behind. Although we live in a culturally-rich society of many different kinds of people with different attitudes, colors, cultures, etc., many of us still consider ourselves somehow "superior" to others. Many of us still think this is an "us against them" type of society. Hence, many times, responses range from racial discrimination to overt violence against others just because of the color of their skin, race, creed, religion, or sexual orientation.
The purpose of the JACL, of which the Watsonville-Santa Cruz Chapter is a part, is to be forever vigilant for instances of racism, bigotry, harassment, discrimination, violence, etc. still occurring in our society in the 21st Century. Although the focus of JACL began over instances encountered by Japanese-Americans specifically, we have come to realize the importance of noting and responding to any instances or threats against any recognized group of individuals. This is based on the fact that: if anyone's rights are threatened or denied, it is also a threat to the rights of all of us-i.e., the total society. As stated by John Tateishi, National JACL Executive Director, the mission of the JACL is, "to fight discrimination and to insure the well being of anyone who is victimized by social injustice."
The Watsonville-Santa Cruz Chapter is the "local" organization with ties to the international civil rights organization of the JACL. Our chapter works on a diverse range of activities such as: civil rights, education, culture, civic and history, veterans, etc. We inter-face with other community groups, Asian-American organizations, and the media, to prevent or respond to hate crimes and discrimination. Some examples include the following: the community picnic; support of Watsonville Taiko, Kokoro no Gakko, Sister City's Program of cities in Santa Cruz County, Santa Cruz Japanese Cultural Fair, and the JACL Senior Center. For our young scholars, we support the Kee Kitayama Memorial Scholarship, as well as scholarships and grants available through the National JACL. If desirable, we participate with a Blue Cross health insurance plan. A long-term health care plan is also available. If needed, our Chapter can mobilize its disaster relief committee to help our community friends and members who may suffer from various calamities or misfortunes such as earthquakes, floods, or fire. We also inform our members of current issues and upcoming attractions through a great newsletter.
Please join the nearly 350 members and their families of Santa Cruz County and northern Monterey County and beyond who belong to the Watsonville-Santa Cruz Chapter of the JACL. For more information, please contact Membership Chairperson, Victor Kimura, at (831) 761-0945. We welcome you and thank you for your support.
Paul Kaneko, Chapter President, 2004
In 1928, the Nisei (second generation) in San Francisco formed the New American Citizens League and encouraged others to form similar organizations. In Watsonville, the leaders of the Japan Society (Issei who are immigrants) suggested that the younger Nisei form the Watsonville Citizens League. The first officers in 1934 were Tom Matsuda, President; Bill Shirachi, Treasurer; and Sam Hada, Secretary. The organization became a member of the National Japanese American Citizens League, which had been organized in 1929.
During the next seven years the organization was primarily a social club respecting the plafonds loyer loi pinel. It also participated in patriotic events by entering in the Fourth of July parade with colorful floral floats.
After the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor on December 7, 1941 and the subsequent declaration of war between the two countries, all persons of Japanese ancestry were evacuated to the interior from the West Coast, according to President Franklin D. Roosevelt's Executive Order 9066, issued on February 19, 1942. The first group of the Watsonville Nikkei (Japanese and Japanese Americans) community were interned at the Salinas Rodeo Grounds on April 27, 1942. In all, 1,301 Nikkei members of Santa Cruz County were removed, 71% were American citizens. In early July the Salinas "Assembly Center" closed down, and most of the internees were transferred to Poston "relocation camps," with half in Camp I and half in Camp II.
During the war years, the organization was inactive and relied heavily on the National JACL's leadership.
In the spring of 1947, a committee consisting of Kow Wada, James Izumizaki, Charlie Shikuma, Walter Hashimoto, Frank Uyeda, Harry Mayeda, Min Hamada, Hardy Tsuda, George Ura and Shig Hirano issued an invitation to Watsonville's Nisei to form a "non-religious citizens organization" which would be a Nisei group to "carry on community services." The Issei organization, the Japan Society, deeded over the property on Union Street to the Watsonville Citizens League in April of 1948.In June of 1948, the group formally re-organized the Watsonville Citizens League with William Fukuba as president. The first major decision was a symbolic one -- to carry on a tradition begun by the Watsonville Japan Society by entering a decorated car in the Fourth of July parade.
The WCL provided information about the Nikkei community to the general public, assisted Nikkei in filing evacuation claims for losses sustained during the war, provided Blue Cross heath insurance for its members, re-registered its members so they could vote in the 1948 elections, and supported legislation granting naturalization rights to Issei.
In November of 1949 the organization became the Watsonville Japanese American Citizens League (although legally it remained WCL until 1964). During the 1950's and 1960's the JACL was occupied with health insurance plans, citizenship classes for the Issei, and a JACL Issei History Project. Keiro kai dinners were sponsored to honor the Issei and older Nisei residents for their contributions to the Pajaro Valley. Membership of the organization included residents of Santa Cruz County, the northern portion of Monterey County and Aromas, a small portion of this community lies in San Benito County.
In 1971 the JACL began to look for a suitable place for Issei and older Nisei to meet and gather socially. The Hayashi Building at 27 First Street in Watsonville was opened as the first Senior Center in July of 1971 with Mr. Tokushige Kizuka as first chairman.
When the Assembly of God Church at 150 Blackburn Street in Watsonville was made available in 1977, the JACL sold the property on Union Street and conducted a fund-raising campaign. The purchase price was set at $55,000. However, the Nikkei community donated over $71,000. This was remarkable for, only a few years before, the Nikkei community was struggling to recover from their wartime losses. The building's official name is JACL Tokushige Kizuka Hall.
Programs of the JACL included contributing to the Watsonville Community Hospital, restoration of the downtown plaza bandstand, conducting health clinic fairs, scholarship programs for high school seniors, and securing redress for the internment. It has been honored as the Organization of the Year by the Watsonville Chamber of Commerce and Agriculture. This is remarkable since in 1945 only one in five in the Pajaro Valley wished for the return of the Nikkei after the war.With the cooperation of Watsonville High School staff and Class of 1992, 13 Nisei graduates of the Class of 1942 received their official diplomas with a cap and gown ceremony. It was held on June 12, 1992 at 2 pm, exactly 50 years later.The JACL Tokushige Hall facilities are used by Watsonville Taiko, Watsonville Bonsai Club, Kokoro no Gakko (a Japanese Cultural Summer School program), KAYO singing club, Kawakami Sister City Committee, a dance club, and the JACL Senior Center.
Today, the Senior Center members meet on Thursday afternoons for a social gathering. They conduct a full range of interesting programs for their members all year long.
The chapter has recently changed its name to Watsonville-Santa Cruz JACL that reflects its membership roster. The chapter draws from all of Santa Cruz County and the northernmost portion of Monterey County (the Pajaro Valley).The chapter's varied programs include Senior Center, membership, funeral koden, scholarships, Blue Cross Insurance, long term health care, disaster relief, youth activities, civil rights issues, Day of Remembrance programs, cultural activities, and veterans issues.The main activities include an Installation/Keiro Kai dinner in January, Day of Remembrance observance in February, Spirit of Watsonville parade on the Fourth of July, and an annual community picnic in August.
"Liberty Lost...Lessons in Loyalty," re-enacted the unjust evacuation of all persons of Japanese ancestry from Santa Cruz County on April 27, 2002, on the 60th anniversary of Exclusion Order 16. It called attention to the hardships experienced by the internees in the assembly centers and "relocation centers"," to the heroics of those who served in the 100th/442nd Regimental Combat Team and the Military Intelligence Service, and to the wonderful loyalty of those Chinese and Caucasian Americans who supported the Japanese and Japanese Americans during the internment and re-settlement periods. The event was made possible with the support and cooperation of the entire community of Watsonville, for which we are grateful.
The chapter also worked closely and in concert with other civil rights and community organizations agaainst racial bigotry and discrimination, hate crimes and social injustice.
Those who are interested in the "Japanese American Experience: The Internment" may contact Mas Hashimoto, 578 Vivienne Drive, Watsonville, CA 96076, (831) 722-6859 or e-mail at email@example.com.
As an educational civil rights organization it has a speaker's bureau for local public and private schools and organizations on the Japanese American experience. The chapter has a lending library of books, videos, CDs, posters, etc. on the Japanese American experience.
By Sandy Lydon and Mas Hashimoto
Officers are appointed by the Board of Directors to serve one year terms. Board Members are elected by the membership to serve three year terms.
Senior Center Representatives:
Bobbi Jo Palmer
Liberty Lost; Lessons in Loyalty The First Re-enactment of the Internment of Japanese Americans during WWII
"Camp Dance" Show
The Mello Center
250 East Beach Street
Saturday, April 2, 2005 at 1PM
Click here for information
Kee Kitayama Memorial
Scholarship for 2005
Tuesday, April 26, 2005.
Click here for information
First Saturday in July
Saturday July 2, 2005
Aptos Village Park
11:00 AM to 4:30 PM
Programs of the Watsonville-Santa Cruz Chapter of the JACL—
A List of “Recent” Events.
• Socializing, exercise, and Bingo Games—Every Thursday at Kizuka Hall.
Attended by 50-60 people. More than 80 people are active members of the
Chapter’s Senior Center.
• Monthly luncheon and birthday celebration—Honor everyone with a birthday
for the month.
• Senior trips—Average, one trip every month. Following are representative
examples of the past: Chukchansi Casino, Reno, Las Vegas, Bronson, Poston,
Manzanar, etc. Future planned major trips include: Roaring Camp Railroad &
Barbecue, Northern California/Southern Oregon 5-day Trip, and the Mexican
• Keiro Kai Dinner—Recognizing and honoring our senior members (75+)
during the Officer Installation dinner.
Civil Rights, Constitutional Issues, & Education Programs.
• Reenactment of the 1942 Evacuation: “Liberty Lost . . . Lessons in
Loyalty”—April 27, 2002, the 60th Anniversary of the evacuation from Santa
• Objection of a proposed split of the Pajaro Valley Unified School District
• Support of Anti-discrimination policies of the Pajaro Valley Unified School
• Patriot Act I—Positions and letters of objection.
• Patriot Act II, the Domestic Security Enhancement Act of 2003—Positions
and letters of objection. Support of the Watsonville City Council resolution
objecting to the Act.
• Rescinding of Anti-Japanese Resolutions adopted during WWII in support of
the evacuation and against the return of Japanese Americans back to the area
after the War, e.g., San Benito County, Monterey County, and Santa Cruz
• Letters in support of the Ninth District Court of Appeals regarding the
removal of the words “Under God” from the Pledge of Allegiance.
• Letters and e-mail messages objecting to disparaging remarks made by Talk
Show Host Gordon Liddy on March 7, 2001 on a radio station in Monterey,
CA (KNRY)—to stop apologizing for the accidental sinking of a Japanese
fishing trawler by a US submarine. The bombing of Pearl Harbor was no
accident. “. . . there’s been enough kissing of Jap asses.” Mr. Liddy has since
then been released.
• Letters in support of same-sex marriage as a constitutional, nondiscrimination right. Objection to constitutional amendment.
• Showing of important film documentaries: “Beyond Barbed wire,” “Honor
Bound,” “A More Perfect Union: Japanese Americans and the United States
Constitution,” “Yankee Samurai,” and “Return to the Valley.”
• Support of the film “Day of Independence” which chronicles the tragic
journey of a family torn apart by a forced, unjust incarceration, a father’s
decision that challenges his son to find strength, and ultimately his son’s
triumph through courage, sacrifice and the All-American game of baseball.
The story is set in an internment camp during World War II.
• Showing and presentation of unreleased documentary: “A Most Unlikely
Hero”—two events on April 17, 2004, Watsonville and Santa Cruz. A total of
70-80 people attended.
• Letters in objection to VISA credit card centered around a Japanese theme and
marketed to Japanese Americans—an assumption by the greater community
that Japanese Americans are aligned and maintain a direct allegiance to Japan.
• Letters of objection to Congressmen Sam Farr and Mike Honda; Tom Honig,
Editor of the Santa Cruz Sentinel; Jon Chown, Editor of the Watsonville
Register-Pajaronian, regarding remarks made by Congressman Coble. Later
in the year, the California State Assembly unanimously passed a resolution
asking for Howard Coble’s resignation from the House subcommittee on
crime, Terrorism and Homeland Security because of his comments regarding
the internment of Japanese Americans during World War II.
• Jack Matsuoka Project—collaborative effort with the Japanese American
Museum of San Jose to recognize and honor the life’s work of Cartoonist Jack
Matsuoka. This event was held at Wesley United Methodist Church in San
Jose on February 28, 2004. An exhibit will remain at the Museum from
February 28, 2004 to February 27, 2005. The Watsonville-Santa Cruz
Chapter will arrange for the exhibit’s showing in the Monterey Bay Area after
it leaves the San Francisco Bay Area. Its final location will be on the grounds
of the Poston Relocation Center.
• Day of Remembrance—Joint effort every year by five Monterey Bay Area
JACL Chapters (Gilroy, Monterey Peninsula, Salinas Valley, San Benito
County, and Watsonville-Santa Cruz). Our Day of Remembrance is an annual
commemoration of the assembly of about 3,500 Japanese Americans in the
Monterey Bay Area. The horse stables on the Salinas Rodeo Grounds served
as the assembly center and temporary home for those who experienced the
inhumane evacuation. The site has been designated a California State
Historical Site with a Japanese garden and special marker.
• Veterans Issues—support of an annual meeting of remaining veterans of the
442 Regimental Combat Team of the 100 Battalion.
• Veteran Recognition—Veteran’s Honor Roll of local Nisei Veterans
dedicated on November 10, 2002. List and presentation of all Nisei veterans
who served in the Armed Forces during World War II. The “Honor Roll”
measures 3' by 6' and is on display in Kizuka JACL Hall in Watsonville.
• Support of the establishment of a third high school in the PVUSD. Mr.
Hashimoto played an important part in the naming of the new campus:
“Pajaro Valley High School.”
• Support of special exhibits: e.g. “Enemy Aliens Files: Hidden Stories of
World War II” (January 2 through February 28, 2003). The exhibit featured
photos and artifacts documenting the treatment of Japanese, German, and
Italian immigrants by the U.S. Government during World War II. A special
opening ceremony and discussion was held on January 31, 2003 in the main
branch of the Santa Cruz Public Library in Santa Cruz.
• “Special Day of Remembrance” was held on February 19, 2003 that featured
presentations of prominent representatives of the Italian, German, and
Japanese community. The important message was that what happened in the
past is in danger of being repeated in conjunction with Arab-Americans. The
event was the collaboration of the American Civil Liberties Union; Temple
Beth El; Muslim Student Alliance at UCSC; Middle Eastern Education
Coalition at UCSC; the Resource Center for Nonviolence; the National
Association for the Advancement of Colored People; the Marconi Civic Club
of Santa Cruz; Community TV of Santa Cruz County; the Santa Cruz Islamic
Center; and the Watsonville-Santa Cruz Chapter of the JACL.
• Supported a letter by the JACL to Congressman Trent Lott objecting to
comments made in support of segregationist Strom Thurmond for President.
The by John Tateishi requested that Mr. Lott step down as Majority Leader of
the U.S. Senate.
• Letter in support of affirmative action—2/21/03. The Chapter Newsletter of
June 2003 published one of the letters received from a “white male” objecting
to JACL’s position in support of affirmative action.
• UCSC’s Day of Remembrance sponsored by the Japanese American Student
Association at the UCSC. A panel included local JACL members (April
Goral and Mas Hashimoto) and addressed the question: “Why do we need to
remember something that happened so long ago?”
• Support of a lawsuit against clothing retailer Abercrombie & Fitch for
offensive t-shirts which depicted two slant-eyed men in conical hats and the
slogan “Wong Brother Laundry Service—Two Wongs Can Make it White.”
Also of issue is their hiring and firing practices that discriminate against
• Teacher Training of workshops. The Chapter has conducted several teachertraining workshops. Supported by the “Day of Remembrance Education
Fund,” the Chapter also visits many schools throughout the year to present the
“Japanese American Experience: the Internment.” The Chapter supports
efforts by the National JACL in the area of teacher training workshops: e.g.,
“What it Means to be an American” on March 13, 2004.
• The receipt of an educational program regarding the unjust incarceration of
120,000 innocent persons of Japanese ancestry entitled: “Farewell to
Manzanar.” Plans are underway to have a screening of the film with a panel
discussion. Ms. Wakastuki Houston is a member of our Chapter.
• Strongly urging voters to reject Proposition 54 (the Racial Privacy Initiative)
which would have made it illegal for public agencies to compile or use
information by race, ethnicity, color, or national origin. This would have
damaged the ability of documenting disparities by race or ethnicity in
healthcare, disease patterns, educational resources, academic achievement,
and hate crimes and other acts of discrimination.
• Monitored and supported a school administration’s actions to respond to a
racial slur incident that occurred at a local High School (San Lorenzo High).
Although the incident involved a student of African American heritage, our
JACL Chapter is forever vigilant of such occurrences and will fight racial
discrimination and hatred wherever it shows up and against any minority
group. The Chapter has offered to assist the School District is responding to
the incident and developing policies and programs to prevent future
• Junior Olympics—annual track and field competition sponsored by the
• Annual support of Watsonville High School’s Grad Night festivities.
• Support of available scholarships—e.g., National JACL Scholarships; local
scholarship: Kee Kitayama Memorial Scholarship; Kokoro no Gakko (Frank
Mito Trust Fund scholarship); Mike Masaoka Fellowship (for students in their
third year of college or in graduate/professional programs and an American
• Past Min Yasui Oratorical Contest Winner. Thanks to the able coaching of
member Mas Hashimoto, the Chapter’s entry (Brian Arao) won the contest at
the 2000 Convention in Monterey.
• Speaker’s Bureau to local schools and colleges. Every week during the
school year, member Mas Hashimoto makes presentations to students
(elementary to college age) regarding the evacuation during WWII and the
importance of protecting our civil rights. Support is through the “Day of
Remembrance Education Fund.”
• Support of the Watsonville Taiko Group and their concerts. The Group
practices at Kizuka JACL Hall in Watsonville.
• Support of the Kokoro no Gakko—Japanese cultural summer school for
• Japanese Cultural Fair—Co-sponsor of the one-day event in Santa Cruz that
celebrates the many cultural contributions of Japan for the benefit of the entire
community of the Monterey Bay Region.
• Fourth of July Parade—the Chapter customarily co-sponsors a float in the
parade down Main Street in Watsonville. The vehicle is decorated by Kokoro
no Gakko school children and the Watsonville Taiko provides the
entertainment along the parade route. The activity is a collaborative effort on
the part of the JACL, Watsonville Taiko, and the Kokoro no Gakko.
• Maintenance of Japanese Garden in Salinas—joint responsibility of five
JACL chapters of Monterey Bay Area.
• Woven Stories, Woven Lives Project—part of a program of the Watsonville
community to present a flavor of the various types of people who make up the
community. A banner representing the culture of our members presented on
May 1, 2004.
• Community Annual Picnic—Aptos Community Park, every August. Attended
by 100-150 people.
• Support of the Watsonville Bonsai Club
• Support of the Kayo Club
• Renovation and recognition of the Castroville Japanese Language School—
collaborated with Monterey County Redevelopment Agency to preserve the
structure and history of the building. Board Member, Jeff Sumida and his
Uncle (Mr. Kunio Ace Sumida) were instrumental in keeping our chapter
informed and involved during the ongoing process, and ultimately saving the
structure for future generations. The theme of the project is: “For the Sake of
the Children—Kodomo no tame ni.” A new generation of migrant children
• Support of the purchase of a historic painting “Point Lobos at Sunset” by the
late Professor Chiura Obata of UC Berkeley for the campus of CSUMB.
• Support of the showing of the Japanese drama/comedy film “Shall We Dance”
as part of the 2003 Pacific Rim Festival in Santa Cruz County.
• Support of the reading and book signing by Jeanne Wakatsuki Houston,
author of “The Legend of the Fire Horse Woman” on March 9, 2004.
The following are other activities that make the Watsonville-Santa Cruz Chapter whole
• Newsletter—Excellent, comprehensive monthly newsletter.
• Insurance—Participation with the Chapter’s Blue Cross Health Trust, basic
health insurance care.
• Long-term health care, vision care, dental care, & planned giving programs.
• Funerals and Koden—Recognition and condolences of the passing of our
• Disaster Relief—Recognition and assistance to those members who are in
need because of disasters and collamities.
• Building Maintenance—up keep of Kizuka JACL Hall, 150 Blackburn Street,
Watsonville, CA. The Chapter’s building is well used by various activities
sponsored by the JACL.
• Chapter Web Site— www.watsonvillesantacruzjacl.org contains an updated
list of board members, present and past newsletters, membership application,
goals of the Chapter, links to other JACL web sites, and links to local business
owned by Chapter members.
• Joint installation of officers—dinner/luncheon at San Juan Oaks Country Club
with the JACL Chapters from Gilroy and San Benito County.
• Market Place—an on-line market-place for members to buy and sell each
• Review and updating of the Chapter Constitution and Bylaws.
• History of the Japanese American in the Pajaro Valley—an on-going research
of the experience of JA’s in the Valley. The program was introduced in the
Chapter Newsletter on April 2003 with a request for stories and photographs
of families, businesses, farms, etc. The project is on-going.
• Compilation and lending library of materials on the Japanese American
Experience for elementary, junior high, and high school students.
• Reliable Participation in activities and meetings of the NCWNPD District of
the JACL, as well as the National JACL in San Francisco. Ms. April Goral is
a Chapter Delegate and a member of the District Officer.
• 75th Anniversary/Recognition Dinner of the NCWNPD—March 27, 2004,
Blackhawk Auto Museum, Danville. Ms. Rosie Terasaki was recognized as
our “Unsung Hero.”
• 70th Anniversary of the Watsonville-Santa Cruz JACL Chapter planned for the
• Maintain relationships with local religious institutions: Westview Presbyterian
Church and Watsonville Buddhist Temple.
• Ongoing dialogue about the future of JACL in an era of changing
demographics, misconceptions or lack of knowledge about the organization,
the challenge of effectively communicating the value and ongoing importance
of the JACL.
• Support and attendance to “An American Testimonial: A Salute to the
Japanese American Leaders” in Los Angeles on September 13, 2003.
May 12, 2004
THE WATSONVILLE-SANTA CRUZ JACL
Newsletter June 2004
Congratulations are in order!
Congratulations to all graduates and to all June brides. You were both dedicated on achieving your goals and/or
We wish you much happiness coupled with success.
Happy Father’s Day, June 20th
Father’s Day is a tradition synonymous with outdoor barbecuing--of teriyaki steak, hot dogs and hamburgers with
pickles and lots of catsup and mustard, corn or rice, and, maybe, potato salad.
Dad gets to BBQ and watch the final round of the US Open (golf) tournament on TV.
It’s his day, so let him enjoy the remote today.
To all the fathers, have a great day! And, thanks!
Flag Day, June 14th
We’re not sure whether Betsy Ross made the first flag. There is much debate between scholar/historians and the
Regardless, the evolution of a flag of 13 white stars in a background of blue with 13 red and white stripes into a flag
with 50 stars is amazing, and it may not stop there.
The color red stands for England (remember, the “redcoats?”), white stripes for separation, and a new constellation of
stars appears in the blue heavens.
Celebrate the day with a bountiful display for the American flag with its accompanying Constitution and Bill of Rights
still represents the most cherished goals of true liberty and freedom for all mankind.
Loyalty's Trial by Combat, A Memorial Day Story, by Joseph Ichiuji, Rockville
I am second-generation Japanese, born and raised in California. In September 1941, I was drafted and inducted into
the U.S. Army and had just completed basic training in field artillery when Pearl
Harbor was attacked. In February 1942, President Roosevelt signed Executive Order 9066, after which I was discharged
along with 2,000 other Japanese American soldiers and reclassified 4C, an enemy alien
ineligible for service.
After my discharge, I briefly returned home to help my family move to Poston Relocation Camp in Arizona on a few
days' notice and with only what we could carry.
In January 1943, the War Department authorized the formation of the 442nd Regimental Combat Team, a segregated
unit for Japanese American soldiers, and reclassified us as eligible to serve. When the recruiters came to my camp, I was
among the first to volunteer. I wanted to prove that I was a loyal American, I wanted to defend my country, and I felt it
was the only way to get my family out from the barbed wire.
In the final days of the war, my unit was detached from the 442nd RCT and sent to Germany. We were one of the first
Allied forces to liberate the Jews from a sub-camp of Dachau in late April 1945. I will never forget that camp and the
Jewish prisoners, barely alive from malnutrition, the cold weather and despicable treatment by the Nazis. I remember
seeing their temporary barracks surrounded by barbed wire, and it reminded me of my family incarcerated in Arizona.
When we liberated the Jews from the camp, I wondered to myself when my family would be free, too. In 1942, the
Japanese Americans had few friends. But now I know that we as a nation have learned from this history so that it will
never be repeated and that no community will ever be forced to stand alone
as we were.
[Editor’s note: We thank Judy Niizawa of Sunnyvale for making this and the following article available to us.]
“For two old soldiers, a day of thanks and reflection” by Frank Oliveri Advertiser Washington Bureau
WASHINGTON - Shizuya Hayashi and Barney Hajiro are old now. They walk slowly, speak softly and their hands are
gnarled and creased - just like thousands of other World War II veterans. (Visit newspaper's website to view photo.)
Gene Airheart, a member of the Lost Battalion, and Medal of Honor recipient Shizuya Hayashi were reunited at the
World War II Memorial in Washington, D.C., Gannett News Service.
Check these websites: www.jacl.org www.watsonvillesantacruzjacl.org
But around their necks they wear a blue ribbon, from which hangs the wreathed gold star representing the Medal of
Honor, this nation's highest military honor for valor.
Among the crowds of veterans, politicians and amateur historians visiting Washington, D.C., this week to dedicate the
new World War II Memorial tomorrow, Hayashi and Hajiro are walking testaments to the thousands of young men who
died on the battlefields of Europe and the Pacific.
"I come here to represent my buddies," Hajiro said yesterday. Hayashi and Hajiro traveled from Hawai'i to take part in
Smiling slightly, one man with a smooth, broad face and the other more angular, they were late for an event in their
Hayashi, 86, of Pearl City, and Hajiro, 87, of Waipahu, were the calm center amid turbulent, milling crowds.
Observers approached and respectfully asked for autographs, shook their hands, or simply said thanks.
One man who'd just received an autograph said, "This is unbelievable."
This is nothing new for Hayashi, who said he's approached often for autographs.
Hayashi and Hajiro were members of the legendary 442nd Regimental Combat Team. Made up mostly of Nisei--
second-generation Japanese Americans--the 442nd was one of the most decorated units during
World War II. This day Hayashi and Hajiro had come to be honored by members of the "Lost Battalion," which they saved.
In October 1944, the 1st Battalion of the 141st Infantry Regiment was cut off from its unit in eastern France. Two of
their sister battalions tried to save them; both were turned away with heavy casualties.
So the order was given to the 442nd to save - at all costs - 221 soldiers from annihilation. In succeeding, the 442nd
suffered 800 casualties.
"I am so appreciative," said Gene Airheart, of Scottsboro, Ala., who was a member of the Lost Battalion. Slightly built
and frail, Airheart placed his left hand on Hayashi's shoulder, his right gently patting Hayashi's stomach.
But, it was Hajiro who earned his medal in the battle to rescue the Lost Battalion over several days of heroism the
likes of which movies are made.
On three days in October 1944, he pounded enemy snipers with his Browning Automatic Rifle, ambushed units and
captured 19 enemy soldiers. He personally destroyed two machine gun nests and uncovered two more.
His medal citation notes he purposefully drew enemy fire to expose their positions and used his weapon to kill four
Of his extraordinary feats, Hajiro said, "I don't feel bad about it." He speaks with gravity about the buddies he lost on
the so-called Suicide Hill.
"I didn't do this by myself," he said. "We all did this."
When asked how he earned his Medal of Honor, Hayashi shrugs his shoulders modestly and says, "I was just doing my
He was 26 years and one day old on November 29, 1943, near an Italian town called Cerasuolo, in a mountainous
region, where he said it felt like he was always fighting uphill.
Amid the staccato hammering of machine gun fire, crackling rifles and bursting grenades, Hayashi rose and fired his
automatic rifle from his hip. He overran a machine gun position, killing nine men. Advancing another 200 yards, Hayashi's
unit began taking fire from a German 88mm anti-aircraft gun. With his weapon, Hayashi killed nine enemy soldiers in the
gun pit and captured four more. The Germans were forced to withdraw.
"I was lucky," he said. He said his wife tells him he flinches and flails often when he sleeps.
"I guess you've got to live with it," he said.
They had come a long way to commiserate, share their stories, and accept the accolades of a nation.
As Hayashi spoke, a video of Sen. Daniel Inouye, another Medal of Honor winner from the 442nd, played on a giant
screen nearby. The Hawai’i Democrat recalled his own experiences in battle and in receiving the medal from President
After shaking another veteran's hand, Hayashi said, "You don't remember their names, but you remember the faces."
On May 31, America will remember their deeds.
In Memory, ..
We send our heartfelt condolences to the family, relatives, and friends of Akiharu “Aki” Arao.
Memorial Day Program, May 31st , 2004
We received a very nice thank you note from Post Adjutant Wallace Nunotani of the Veterans of Foreign Wars,
Golden Gate Nisei Memorial Post 9879 for our continuing support of the Memorial Day Program.
Thoughtful donations were received from:
In loving memory of Akiharu “Aki” Arao from
Jennifer Ura Gavin
Jiro and Jane Sugidono for
Bruce Yamashita’s Story
Rosie Terasaki in honor of
Mas and Marcia Hashimoto
Rosie Terasaki in appreciation
Shig and Ruby Kizuka and Mas and Marcia Hashimoto--for sponsoring the full-page ad of our JACL in the 2004
Hawaii convention program book.
Day of Remembrance Education Fund
We are always grateful when individuals and/or their families contribute to advance the causes for which we are
dedicated. We do not disclose the amount of the donations for each and every contribution is precious to us. We are
grateful to be included in your thoughts. “Thank you” to the following.
Fumie Arao in loving memory of
Akiharu “Aki” Arao
In appreciation for our monthly JACL newsletter
Ted Kobata of Sacramento
Brian Y. Shiroyama of Morgan Hill
Mr. and Mrs. Joe Shingai of San Juan Bautista
In loving memory of Henry Yoshimi Kokka from
the Kokka family, relatives and friends:
Dan Hara, Yoko and Robert Kuramoto-Raffai, Mary Kuwabara, Tak and Kuniko Takeno, Hiroko Nagasaki, Greg
and Kathy Saiki, Betty and Stim Suzuki, Joyce and Steve Suzuki, Nora and Gary Takeoka, Jon Tamaki, Jean
Toyoshima, Ray and Mary Urushima, Rosie Watanabe, Ron Yokoo Family and the Kokka Family.
JAPANESE CULTURAL FAIR by Paul Kaneko
We look forward to seeing you and your family on Saturday, June 19th from 11 am to 6 pm at the Eighteenth Annual
Japanese Cultural Fair, Mission Plaza Park, in Santa Cruz.
As with the last couple of years, our JACL chapter is a co-sponsor of this significant, community event featuring the
cultural contributions of Japan to our region. We will offer our famous, delicious locally-grown strawberries and hot
ocha (tea) for sale, and distribute important JACL information. We have also invited Sandy Lydon’s representatives to
sell their books in conjunction with our booth.
We will encourage patrons to sign up with The Asian American Donor Program’s (AADP) marrow/stem cell donor
registration program at our table. This important program is spearheaded by Milo Yoshino of the Diablo Valley JACL.
A martial arts demonstration by North Bay Aikido Dojo to be presented at noon, which will be followed by a
performance by our favorite Watsonville Taiko at 12:30 pm. Official greetings will take place at 1 pm.
The rest of the day will feature performances of Shakuhachi/Bamboo Bell, Minyo Akibono and Kotobuki Kai,
Storytelling by Megumi, Bon Odori by Chieko, Tsugaru Shamisen by Kevin Kmetz, Okinawan Dance, and San
Francisco Taiko Dojo at the end. Also provided will be flower arranging by the Ikenobo Ikebana Group, Tea Ceremony
by Kuan Shachu, and Shakuhachi performed in the nearby Zen Center. The Fair concludes at about 6 pm.
Please visit our booth on Saturday, June 19th.
If you are available to help out for a couple of hours with our booth (set up, take down, or man our booth), please call
me. Paul Kaneko, at (831) 476-7040), or April Goral (831) 464-8004. We appreciate your help!
Do not sweat the small stuff. For that matter, do not sweat at all, as it will save you money on deodorant.
Jr. Olympics at Chabot College
The 52nd Jr. Olympics will be held on Sunday, June 6th, and, under the leadership of Kimi Kimura, the WatsonvilleSanta Cruz JACL will field a strong team.
Listed here are the participants and their events:
Cathy Kimura 100 m, 100 m HH, 4x100 relay
Lauren Takahashi 100 m, 200 m, 4x100 relay
Sarah Takahashi 50 m, 100 m, 4x100 relay
David Takahashi 50 m, softball throw, soccer kick
Eric Takahashi 50 m, 100 m, 4x100, softball throw
Greg Takahashi 1600 m, long jump
Kai Kamehiro-Stockwell 100m, 200m, 4x100 relay,
Maia Kamehiro-Stockwell 50 m, 400 m, 4x100 relay,
Mike Mikawa long jump, triple jump,
Mark Guerrero 110 m HH, triple jump
We wish each track and field athlete much success, and we thank them for representing our chapter.
Liberty Lost … Lessons in Loyalty
We received a thoughtful letter from our friend, Kaz Oshima of San Mateo, a Watsonville native who is of the famous
Watsonville High School’s Class of 1942, that we must share for it doesn’t belong to only us:
April 26, 2004
Dear Mas and Marcia:
It’s hard to believe that two years have gone by since the Re-enactment program and the accompanying release of
the Commemorative Program booklet.
You, your colleagues and friends of the JA Community are to be commended for your labor of love in the realization
of your resolve and dedication to make those events come to pass, as well as for the foresight to have the day’s outdoor
and indoor programs recorded on video tapes.
Happy Second Anniversary!
P. S. That certainly is a hard act follow!!
We thank Kaz on behalf of all those who made “Liberty Lost … Lessons in Loyalty” possible. We truly appreciate his
kindness and remembrance.
And, in reflection, how did we manage to pull it off? It was because of the cooperation and goodwill, as they say in
Hollywood, of a “wonderful cast of thousands!”
Thank you, one and all.
A NCWNPD chapter is seriously interested in doing a re-enactment of the evacuation from a train station. We are
excited. Stay tuned for further details.
Nobody can make you feel inferior without your permission. Eleanor Roosevelt
Liberty Lost … Lessons in Loyalty on DVDs
We are pleased to announce that a limited number of DVDs have been produced and are available for sale.
The cost of the set of 2 DVDs is only $30, which includes shipping and handling charges.
The first DVD runs approximately 30 minutes and covers the heart-wrenching stories of the evacuation. The second
DVD, which runs 117 minutes, includes the stories of life in “camp,” stories of our hero/veterans, and the “Kansha”
stories—of those Caucasian and Chinese Americans who helped us during our most difficult times, from 1941 to 1945.
If you, your school, library, or JACL chapter is interested in securing these fascinating stories of the internment of
nearly 120,000 innocent persons of Japanese ancestry, write to Mas Hashimoto, 578 Vivienne Drive, Watsonville, CA.
95076 and enclose a check made payable to Watsonville-Santa Cruz JACL for $30.
Do it today!
The Changing Demographics, Or The Disappearing Act of Japanese Americans
While the Asian American (AA) population is the fastest growing population, Japanese Americans are headed in the
The US Bureau of the Census reported recently that, in relation to the growth of other AA groups, the JA population
will have actually decreased!
Today, while the AA population makes up 3.8% of the population, by 2050 the AA population is expected to grow to
8%. The JAs will not be, however, a major contributor.
The following estimates are for those who listed only one race. Percentages for white refer only to those who were
not of Hispanic ethnicity.
By race and ethnicity:
Group 2000 2050
Total population 282,100,000 419,800,000
White 69.4% 50.1%
Black 12.7% 14.6%
Hispanics 12.6% 24.6%
Asian 3.8% 8.0%
All other races 2.5% 5.3%
By race or nationality (in millions):
1990 2000 Change
Asian only 6,908,638 10,242, 998 +48%
All AA nationalities
Asian Indians 815,447 1.678,760 +106%
Vietnamese 614,547 1,122,528 +83%
Chinese 1,645,472 2,432,585 +48%
Korean 797,849 847,562 +35%
Filipino 1,406,770 1,850,315 +32%
Japanese 847,562 796,700 -6%
Other Asians 779,910 1,285,234 +65%
So, our smaller numbers will have less influence; that is, unless we will it so.
We have a choice. Encourage more of our JAs and supportive friends to join the Japanese American Citizens
League, for once we disband, we will not be able to bring it back ever.
If that happens, then a vacuum of leadership will exist, for these individuals will not be able to exert the
responsibilities assigned to the role of leadership for the JAs.
Membership is $75 ($55 to the National JACL + $20 to the Watsonville-Santa Cruz JACL; $140 for family
membership that includes spouse and the children under the age of 14; $20 for youth/student—between 14 and 15 while
Our Watsonville-Santa Cruz JACL chapter’s P. O. Box is 163, Watsonville, CA. 95077.
Who We Are, and What We Do
For our most recent list of programs and activities, please read the 4-page insert written by our President,
The earlier generations—the Issei and the Nisei—were, of course, the mainstays of the Nikkei community. They
endured racial discrimination, suffered economic hardships, and sacrificed their goals and happiness for future
generations. That’s the kind of people they were (are).
The Issei experienced emotional depression with the camp internment experience. But, at the conclusion of World
War II, they returned with their dignity, their integrity and their honor still very much in tact. They re-built their lives mainly
on hard work and an unshakable belief in the future of their children.
The Nisei who served in the armed forces of this nation did so with distinction and honor. Among the 33,000 who
served in the 100th/442nd Regimental Combat Team and the Military Intelligence Service, over 800 gave “their last full
measure of devotion.” To all of them, we owe our undying gratitude.
Our reputation—what other people think of us--was earned the hard way. We had to prove our loyalty over and over
again. We understood better than most the words of the Constitution and the Bill of Rights.
Some 75 years ago the Japanese American Citizens League was organized to promote Americanism. We knew long
before President Franklin D. Roosevelt spoke of “Americanism is and never was a matter of race or ancestry.” The
backbone as well as the muscle of the JACL were the men and women who experienced first hand the hardships and
degradation, but still believed in the promise that is America.
Some never told their offspring of the horrors of the internment camp. They believed they were, in fact, “protecting”
the children of an unhappy experience. Others wished not to disillusion their children and grandchildren that they were
never in control of their own destiny. They rarely spoke of their internment except to other internees.
For those interned in one of the ten concentration camps of America: did you ever wonder why 120,000 of us on the
mainland were interned while 157,000 of those living on the islands of Hawaii were not? Pearl Harbor is in Hawaii and
2,500 miles closer to Japan than the West Coast of America. It was simply a matter of racism as practiced in the states of
Washington, Oregon, and California.
The JACL is an organization that relies on its grassroots-type membership. It is the best organization that fights
continually and effectively for the protection of the civil rights of all Americans, and, in particular, of those affecting Asian
Americans. It has a proud history. Please join us.
Brown v. Board of Education of Topeka, Kansas 1954
Recently, a black student--a freshman--found racial remarks in his gym locker at San Lorenzo Valley High School
(SLV). This was the second time in less than six months! His brother, a junior in school, also had similar experiences
The Watsonville-Santa Cruz JACL immediately offered assistance. Was this a “hate crime” incident?
SLV students, administration, and faculty elected to hold a special assembly in the gym for all 1,100 students. It
would be held on Monday, May 17th, 2004, on the 50th anniversary of the landmark US Supreme Court case of Brown v.
Board of Education.
A trio—Tony Hill, Sandy Lydon, and Mas Hashimoto--journeyed to SLV HS.
Tony Hill spoke first. Growing up in Harlem, NY, Tony recalled getting on a bus to attend an “integrated” school. He
was dropped several blocks from the school, and when he walked to the front entrance, no one was there to meet him.
He told of his treatment in school and of how he had to fight back. What did he receive for his efforts? He was placed in
“Special Education” classes (program to help children with learning disabilities) with students, all of whom were either
black or Puerto Ricans. A science teacher who recognized his talents, intelligence, and strong beliefs rescued Tony.
Today, Tony Hill serves as an educational counselor and consultant.
As a member of the Hollister “Haybaler” varsity baseball team, Sandy came to apologize for his team’s behavior in
1957 against SLV’s team. Hollister was ahead 10 to 0 after 5 innings, his team displayed lack of respect and
sportsmanship by goofing off.
A student at SLV demonstrated his lack of respect by using racial slurs against a black student.
Mas spoke of a racially divided South in 1963 and of his own experiences regarding racism.
We commend the students, faculty and administration of SLV, and we want them and the community to know that the
Japanese American Citizens League will assist in the fight against discrimination of any kind.
Asian Americans and Brown v. The Board
Karen Narasaki, president and executive director of the National Asian Pacific American Legal Consortium which is
based in Washington, D. C., points out that our Asian American community is extremely diverse in ethnicity, employment,
and academic achievement.
Southeast Asians who came as refugees have high poverty rates and are often in poorer schools, which are often the
most segregated. They do not receive the quality education necessary promised to all our children.
There is much work ahead for all of us.
The Japanese American Experience: The Internment
At the invitation of Professor Hiroshi Fukurai of UCSC, Mas Hashimoto presented his program to about 25
students of Sociology on Wednesday, May 19th. Thanks, too, to Victor Kimura for his assistance in this program. Mas
also included a segment from the first video of “Liberty Lost … Lesson in Loyalty.”
Then, on May 29th, thanks to an invitation by Librarian Dennise Julia, Mas presented his program at the Gilroy
Public Library to the children and adults who had gathered.
He is scheduled to speak on the history of the Japanese and Japanese Americans of the Pajaro Valley to the Sons in
Retirement, Branch 85 (Pajaro Valley) on Tuesday, June 8th, at their regular monthly luncheon meeting.
Kokoro no Gakko 2004
Summer Session begins on Monday, June 28th and ends Friday, July 9th with Open house at 6pm. Daily classes
begin at 9am and end at noon.
We are in need of a flatbed truck for our “Spirit of Watsonville” 4th of July parade entry. Please call Paul Kaneko at
(831) 476-7040 if you can help us. HELP!
Watsonville Buddhist Temple News
by Jackie Yamashita
1 Tues. 7:30pm Temple Board Meeting
2 Wed. 3pm Fujinkai Meeting
3 Thurs. 7:30pm ABA Meeting
5 Sat. 5pm Bishop Ogui & Bishop Watanabe
Congratulation & Testimonial Dinner
6 Sun. 10am Shotsuki Hoyo & Sunday Service
8 Tues. 7pm Ministerial Affairs Meeting
11 Fri. 7:30pm San Juan Hollister
13 Sun. 10am Sunday Service
Dharma School Activity Day
14 Mon. 7:30pm Obon Dance Practice in Gym
16 Wed. 7:30pm Obon Dance Practice in Gym
20 Sun.10am Last Sunday Service Father’s Day
Graduation / Late Bishop’s Memorial Service
21 Mon. 7:30pm Obon Dance Practice in Gym
23 Wed. 7:30pm Obon Dance Practice in Gym
27 Sun.10am Dharma School Fun Day
28 Mon. 7:30pm Obon Dance Practice in Gym
30 Wed. 7:30pm Centennial Meeting
Shotsuki Hoyo Service 10am
Sunday June 6, 2004
Shotsuki refers to gathering of thanks, an expression
of gratitude for being able to find the meaning of life
through Nembutsu. Let us gather to remember and
express our gratitude. The families of the following
deceased of June are invited to attend and Oshoko
(incense offering). We look forward to seeing you at
YBA members--Justin Tanimoto, Ryan Wobber, Derek Nagamine, Ryan Rumney, Laura Nagamine and
Shannon Kato with Phyllis Nagamine and Sheryl Wobber as advisors and Rev. and Mrs. Hanayama as
chaperones--went to the WYBL Conference in Anaheim on April 16th weekend. “Foundation” was the theme.
Everyone had fun at the conference, and also enjoyed seeing old friends as well as meeting new friends.
YBA will be planning a year end party and celebration of our graduating class.
YBA will be hosting our visiting guests from the Tri-State YBL this July. They are planning to visit various
Temples and will be stopping at Watsonville around July 16th weekend. They will be visiting with us for a couple of
days. There will be approximately 25 members from Denver. We are looking forward to meeting our friends from TriState Buddhist Temple.
Bishop Watanabe’s retirement party & welcome party for the new bishop to be held in San Francisco at Miyako
Hotel on June 5th. The cost is $45. If you are interested in attending, please call the office.
Ron S. Mito, DDS, Inducted into the Watsonville High School’s Hall of Fame!
Ron Mito was born in Milwaukee, Wisconsin but at the age of six months, the family moved to Watsonville to be near
his mother’s (Mary Mito) family.
From the age of eight, Ron was determined to become a dentist, following in the steps of his mentor, Dr. Clifford
Ron attended local schools and graduated from Watsonville High School in 1968. He played classical trumpet and at
the age of 14, he was invited to join the world-famous Watsonville Band as its youngest member. In high school Ron
served as Junior Class Vice President and Senior Class President. He was the first President of the newly created
Rotary Interact Club, a service organization.
Ron attended UC Davis, earning a BS with honors in Biological Sciences. Upon graduation from UCLA’s School of
Dentistry and completing his residency requirements, Ron planned to return to Watsonville to practice with Dr. Fujimoto.
Dr. Fujimoto convinced Ron that there was much work needed where his unique talents and skills would best be
Ron, with a partner, created the first office based dental practice for persons with severe dental fear and anxiety
(many are, but not limited to, children) in Southern California. Their practice included a physician and dentist
anesthesiologist to provide sedation of general anesthesia, while they provided the complicated, full mouth dental
reconstruction. Their vision was shared at national dental seminars and attracted much media attention world-wide, with
interviews on most major TV news networks, radio talk shows and, ultimately, a segment on CNN Medical Update.
While running his dental practice, Ron maintained a part-time teaching position at the UCLA School of Dentistry. In
1984, he returned to a full-time teaching position. He soon became the Director of the General Practice Residency, then
Chair of the Section of Hospital Dentistry. Later, he became the Director of Postgraduate Certificate and Residency
Programs and, ultimately, Associate Dean. As the Associate Dean for Clinical Dental Sciences, Ron oversees a clinical
enterprise that provides 150,000 patient visits per year, has 352 dental students, 100 dental residents, 300 faculty and
150 staff members. In addition, he is currently the President of the UCLA Dental Alumni Association and was honored as
the Alumnus of the Year in 2002.
Ron has an active personal life. He and his wife, Millicent, have two daughters, Marisa who is 11 and Lilyann who is
six. Active in their children’s school, both Ron and Millicent have received the prestigious Golden Oak for their services to
Once again, this summer, Ron will return to Watsonville to be the Principal of Kokoro no Gakko, the highly acclaimed
Japanese cultural summer school program.
Congratulations to Dr. Ron S. Mito!
We thank Peggy Ernst, President, and the members of the Watsonville High School Foundation for this honor.
WESTVIEW NEWS by Joanne Yahiro
In February of this year the men and women’s groups joined forces to become one: the Circle of Life Ministry. They
met again on May 16, and the purpose statement was created and approved:
The purpose of Circle of Life Ministry is to have a servant’s heart as we:
Coordinate the upkeep of our church home,
Coordinate hospitality for our church family, and
Provide additional giving opportunities.
Lynne Nagata and Lester Aoki are serving as Co-Moderators, and we look forward to serving and working together.
Our annual Parents Appreciation Potluck Luncheon will be held on Sunday, June 13, immediately after the
worship service. It’s a wonderful time to celebrate and pay tribute to our parents for all they’ve done for us in the past and
how they continue to inspire us everyday. Thank you, Moms and Dads!
Lillian Hatsue Takeuchi passed away on Monday, May 17, 2004. We will miss her smile and her wonderful spirit,
and our prayers of peace and healing go out to her family.
Senior Center Memberships
A number of people marked that they wish to join the Senior Center ($20 membership).
Please let Shig Kizuka, our Senior Center chairperson, know of your desire to participate in their activities. It is a
most energetically active group.
Come and join in the fun.
Senior Center News by Kitako Izumizaki
Seniors started off the month of May celebrating Mother's Day. After a moment of silence in honor of departed
members, the group joined in the singing of
"God Bless America," which was followed by Kensui Idemoto's rendition of shigin, "Thinking of Mother.” Those mothers
over 88 years and over were then honored.
With a corsage: Louise Sako, Nobue Fujii, Tomiko Yamashita and Toshiko Tsudama pinned a corsage on Fujiye
Idemoto, Nancy Iwami, Fusako Ishizuka, Yoshino Matano, Masako Miura, Tsuyuko Muronaka, Sueko Okamura,
Hitoko Shikuma, Asa Sugidono and Masano Yamashita. Michiko Hamada delivered a corsage to Tsuyuko Muronaka,
and Jiro Sugidono delivered one to his mother, Asa Sugidono. A group photo was taken and Masako Miura gave a talk
on "Remembrance of Mother.” Masako remembers being pinched under the table when naughty and also remembers the
Japanese garden with a fish pond and flowers in her yard.
Carmel Kamigawachi then showed a VCR on Hawaiian no-do Jime. The day concluded with a very delicious dinner
at Hong Kong II. All mothers appreciate not having to cook.
Those seniors who went to Table Mountain had wonderful weather all the way. Some lucky ones came back with
more than they spent. Others made their usual
donations. However, all in all it comes out to be a very reasonable days entertainment.
Letters were read from Rosie Terasaki and Mas and Marcia Hashimoto. Rosie thanked us but we should be proud
to have Rosie in our midst. She was honored last month on her dedicated years of hard work for the JACL.
Congratulations to Rosie, and may you enjoy your free time from now on with us here at the
April/May birthdays celebrated together this time as there was only one birthday in April. Birthday celebrants were
Michie Matsumoto, Nancy Iwami who
reached 90, Inako Johnson, Mitzi Katsuyama, Tsuyuko Muronaka (94), Iwao Yamashita and Haruko Yoshii. Happy
birthday to all, and may you all enjoy many, many more!. Cake cutting honors done by Nancy Iwami, and after picturetaking all enjoyed cake and ice cream. Nancy received a plant for reaching 90, and Tsuyuko Muronaka received a plant
Thank you card received and read from Jane and Jiro Sugidono on the occasion of their mother's birthday last month.
Speedy recovery and return to Akira Yamashita, who is at the Arthur Road Convalescent Hospital. We missed you,
Inako Johnson. Hope all is well with you.
New membership roll passed out by Shig Kizuka. Shig also invited Willie Yahiro to explain about medicare
prescription insurance. Every Tuesday at 10:00 am, interested seniors can get more information on price of drug, cost of
plan, which plan works for you etc. from Willie at his office. He explained that in 2006, there will be a part D on your Social
Security card. There are many plans, and the most charged is supposed to be $30. Take your time to look it over well.
Shig announced the only and last trip to Reno this year is Aug.22/23, Sunday/Monday. Members $65. Others $75.
Price of gasoline makes it hard to make it any cheaper.
Thank you, May toban ladies Mitzi Katsuyama, Kazuko Sakai and Eiko Nishihara for a job well done.
Sadie and Nick Nakamori are now residing at 1010 Rockwood Blvd. apt.#222, Spokane, WA 99202. Phone number
1-509-458-7726. She would like to hear from her friends and she is looking forward to returning. It may take some time as
Nick is still not too well.
We thank the following for their generous monetary donations: Mrs. Helen Mito, Mr/ Mrs Sako, Helen Muronaka,
Mas and Marcia Hashimoto, Rosie Terasaki, Michie Matsumoto, Inako Johnson, Nancy Iwami, Mitzi Katsuyama,
Iwao Yamashita and Haruko Yoshii.
Thank you for these following donations:
Kazue Murata hand made dish cloths, crocheted doilies
Eiko/Yamato Nishihara Jams and Jellies
Jiro/Jane Sugidono hand-crafted owls (2), tissues
Michiko Hamada lemons
Kazuko Sakai Kleenex
Shig/Ruby Kizuka flowers
Evelyn Ogawa material for zabuton
Emi Yamamoto lots of beautiful garden flowers, eggs, loquats
Helen Mito foil, cling wrap
Yoshiko Sasano cookies
.Inako/Roland Johnson peanuts, 3 doz., eggs
April Goral candy
George/Frances Hoshiyama 4 bags shrimp chips
Geo/Michie Matsumoto tissues
Louise/Ray Sako 4 zabutons
Mary Okamoto arare
Nobue Fujii table flowers, doilies
Haruko Yoshii 2 doz. tissues
Rosie/Yoshiko Terasaki case of ramen noodles
Sumi Matsunami daikon tsukemono
Toshiko Yamashita goodies on bus trip
Kinji/Motoko House package of Ricola cough drops, 4 boxes Kleenex, 4 bowls ramen, candy on bus trip
Iwao/Tomiko Yamashita gave us all barbecued chicken to take home. Belated thanks. It was delicious!!
Many thanks for all your generosity.
June calendar is as follows: June 3, regular meeting, 10th birthday, 17th regular meeting, and 24th Father's Day
See you next month.
Watsonville Taiko & Shinsei Daiko
by Karen Groppi
It is June! Congratulations to all the graduates. Special congratulations to our own Chie Yamaguchi who has been
drumming with us for 6 years. We are sorry she will be leaving us, but happy for her new adventure to Tokyo, Japan
where she will continue her education to become a Shiatsu masseuse.
We have had one of our busiest months ever with 9 performances over a 30 day period. June will gratefully be a
quieter month for us. First, we will be celebrating with graduates of Soquel High School at their grad night party.
Then on June 19 we will be playing taiko and selling somen and other goodies at the Japanese Cultural Fair.
Please come and enjoy this fair as we are so fortunate to have this yearly event that presents a wide variety of Japanese
arts and culture to the community. Come at 12:30 pm to see Watsonville Taiko perform and later enjoy San Francisco
Taiko’s closing to the event at 5:00 pm. In between, don’t miss the shakuhatchi, shamisen, Bon Odori, Okinawan
dancers, storytelling, ikebana and tea ceremony.
New ten-week beginner’s taiko classes for adults and children are held at Kizuka Hall on Fridays. Adults at 7:00 p.m.
and children at 5:00 p.m.
Our class in Taiko Dance continues at the Studio in Soquel. This Wednesday evening class from 8:00-10:00
incorporates movement and form with taiko rhythms.
Come drum with us at our workshops on the first and third Saturdays of the month from 1:00 – 3:00 p.m.
These classes are held at Orchard School in Aptos and are open to beginners and continuing students.
Call Karen at (831) 426-9526 for more details on any of our performances or classes or to purchase CDs or videos.
The School Year Has Ended, But Have You Heard About The Next Planned "Survivor" Show?
The following humorous article was sent to us by Ari Parker, a veteran and highly respected PVUSD teacher in honor
of the retiring teachers who wonder about their replacement.
We wish to offer our congratulations and appreciation to all teachers of the Pajaro Valley Unified School District and
Santa Cruz County for a job well done! We are truly grateful. You will be hard to replace. How do we know? Read on:
Three businessmen and three businesswomen will be dropped in an elementary school classroom for six weeks.
Each businessperson will be provided with a copy of his/her school district's curriculum, and a class of 28 students.
Each class will have five learning-disabled children, three with A.D.D., one gifted child, and two who speak limited
English. Three will be labeled with severe behavior problems.
Each businessperson must complete lesson plans at least three days in advance with annotations for curriculum
objectives and modify, organize, or create materials accordingly. They will be required to teach students, handle
misconduct, implement technology, document attendance, write referrals, correct homework, make bulletin boards,
compute grades, complete report cards, document benchmarks, communicate with parents, and arrange parent
conferences. They must also supervise recess and monitor the hallways.
In addition, they will complete drills for fire, earthquake, and shooting attacks.
They must attend workshops, faculty meetings, union meetings, and curriculum development meetings.
They must also tutor those students who are behind and strive to get their two non-English speaking children
proficient enough to take the Terra Nova and EPA tests. If they are sick or having a bad day they must not let it show.
Each day they must incorporate reading, writing, math, science, and social studies into the program. They must
maintain discipline and provide an educationally stimulating environment at all times.
The business people will only have access to the golf course on the weekends, but on their new salary they will not
be able to afford it anyway. There will be no access to vendors who want to take them out to lunch, and lunch will be
limited to 30 minutes.
On days when they do not have recess duty, the business people will be permitted to use the staff restroom as long
as another survival candidate is supervising their class.
They will be provided with two 40-minute planning periods per week while their students are at specials. If the copier
is operable, they may make copies of necessary materials at this time.
The business people must continually advance their education on their own time and pay for this advanced training
themselves. This can be accomplished by moonlighting at a second job or marrying someone with money.
The winner will be allowed to return to his or her job.
The teaching profession is often a thankless job.
From the Sierra to the sea: The California Landscapes of Chiura Obata (1885-1975)
The National Steinbeck Center in Salinas is proud to announce that this outstanding exhibit will be displayed from
Saturday, June 12 to Sunday, November 7, 2004.
This exhibition is a celebration of artist Chiura Obata’s love of the California landscape. Trained in Japan in the
traditional form of sumi-e (ink painting) Obata cultivated a lifelong reverence for nature as a powerful spiritual force that
inspired both his art and his life.
Arriving in California in 1903 at age 18, he lived in the San Francisco Bay Area and traveled throughout California
recording its natural beauty in his art. He would return numerous times to two places in particular: Yosemite in the Sierra
Nevada Mountains and Point Lobos on the Monterey Peninsula (with an occasional side trip to the Big Trees of Santa
As a professor of art (1932-1954) at UC Berkeley, Obata taught traditional Japanese painting technique as well as
mentoring his students to study and learn from Dai Shizen, which he translated as “Great Nature.”
During World War II the Obatas, along with 120,000 other Japanese and Japanese Americans, were sent to the
Tanforan Assembly Center, then the Topaz internment camp, where Obata organized art schools to help the morale of his
fellow internees. Obata and his wife, Haruko Kohashi, herself a pioneering San Francisco ikebana artist, taught and
demonstrated their respective art forms continuously throughout their lifetimes giving many Americans their first
introduction to Japanese art and aesthetics.
Opening Reception: Thursday, June 17, 2004 from 5:30 to 7:30 pm. A slide lecture by Kimi Kodani Hill, Curator
and granddaughter of Chiura Obata will be presented. Reception admission is $5; free for members.
An Afternoon of Japanese Cultural Demonstrations will be presented on Saturday, June 19, 2004, led by Kimi
Kodani Hill, starting at 12:30 pm with a Gallery Walk. The program includes Japanese congratulatory dancing by Bando
Mitsuhiro Group; Ikebana demonstration by Sogetsu School style by Kozue Knowles of the Ikebana International
Monterey Bay Chapter; Judo demonstration by Salinas Judo Club; Kendo by the Salinas Kendo Dojo; Ikebana
demonstration by the Ohara School style by Emiko Peterson, Ikebana International, Monterey Bay Chapter; Taiko
drumming demonstration, by Shinso Mugen Daiko; Tea Ceremony by Soei; and a final Gallery Walk with Kimi Kodani
For People Who Like to Fly
From a flight attendant:
We would be honored to have you join our JACL - the most proactive and respected civil rights organization in the Asian American community today.
Your membership in our National JACL is never taken lightly or for granted. We have worked to earn your confidence and trust, and we will be there for you. Your active participation and membership can make a significant difference in what happens today in our community and in our nation.
Working toward our national goal of Better Americans in a Greater America is a worthy one. One doesn't have to be of Japanese ancestry to be a member, but one must believe that safeguarding the rights of all Americans and legal residents is of utmost importance.
Please help by joining your friends and neighbors who have dedicated their lives in fighting racial prejudice, discrimination, bigotry, and intolerance. We need you as full members, so please join today.
Watsonville-Santa Cruz JACL Membership Dues Structure:
Individual Member $75 This includes National dues with subscription to the Pacific Citizen, the official paper of the National JACL, and local chapter dues and newsletter. Watsonville-Santa Cruz JACL members are also eligible to join our local Blue Cross Health Trust. Please contact Willie Yahiro at (831) 728-1237 for additional information.)
Family/Couples $140 This includes two National dues with one subscription to the Pacific Citizen, local chapter dues and newsletter (membership includes all children under age 14).
Youth/Student $20 for ages 14 to 24, which includes a subscription to the Pacific Citizen and local youth/student membership and newsletter.
Senior Center Membership $20 for local Senior Center, includes a subscription to the newsletter.