Thursday, March 5, 2009

Former 442nd POW Guard Sends Greetings

When I sent Mr. Genro Kashiwa a copy of the photo showing a Japanese American soldier guarding German POWs during WWII (see "Alabama Mosaic....October 10, 2008 and "Peanuts, POWs....August 30, 2007)), he sent along this Christmas photo of himself with his wife and grandsons in Honolulu. He also sent a copy of their family Christmas letter for 2008, which mentioned his activities with other members of the 442nd company he once belonged to.
The 442nd is the most decorated regimental combat team in United States military history and was composed primarily of Japanese-Americans from Hawaii and the mainland. Their courageous service to our country continues to be an example of patriotism against great odds.

The newsletter notes that the Honolulu contingent of these World War II veterans still gather for monthly meetings, but everyone in their group is now in their 80s, and many have passed away. "As the group grows smaller," Mr. Kashiwa writes, "the close friends who remain are all the more precious to us, and we look forward to visiting with them every month."

The Kashiwas live with their daughter and her husband and their grandsons, Jason, Bradley, and Kevin. Jason's marching band recently went to Washington, D. C. to participate in the inauguration of President Obama.
What an amazingly varied history this wonderful country has!