by Blake Kitayama


Among the dozens of American holidays, Memorial Day is perhaps the most earnest.  Under the blazing sun and a cool breeze we choose to honor, through precious memory, all of those who answered the call to better the world in which we live through their military service.  The Nisei Memorial Day Service challenges our community to remember the hardships experienced by those who came before us.  In light of the social unrest that exists in America today, the presenters emphasized the wars that Nisei veterans fought on both fronts.  The first was overseas, where the 100th Infantry Battalion and the 442nd Regimental Combat Team fought to protect valiant ideals of freedom and human rights in both the Pacific and European Theatres.  The second war was fought after Victory Day in Europe when the deployed Nisei returned home to their families who were still imprisoned in the shadows of guard towers and behind barbed wire fences.  While the Nisei forces fought to a decisive victory in the war overseas, we, as Americans, are still fighting the war on racial discrimination.  Thus, this Memorial Day we not only remember those who have gone before us but we are asked to continue the battle that they started on the home front and keep fighting for the rights deserved by all Americans.

Mr.Sakato 2015

Photo Credit: Gary Arai Former combat soldier George T. “Joe” Sakato (center) of the 442nd Regimental Combat Team and recipient of the medal of honor with members of the color guard From left to right the people in the picture are: Staff Sergeant Ryan Dang, George T. “Joe” Sakato, Staff Sergeant Justin Gonzales, and Staff Sergeant Joseph Haeserl.