-Who's going to remember us?
♪♪ This list, this registry, all these Japanese-American names -- when we're all gone, maybe someone, maybe our kids, our grandkids, will find out we're here, and maybe they can find out what some of us did during the war.
♪♪ -"The Registry was made possible in part [ Wind blowing ] -[ Grunts softly ] I had two burial plots in my hometown.
My brother bought a whole batch of them for the family, and he got two of them for me all at the same place.
Our kids said, "What do you want to be buried in California for?
We'll never go see you."
[ Chuckles ] "So why don't you get buried here?"
So we're here.
This is where the soldiers from Iraq and Afghanistan are buried.
♪♪ Over here.
♪♪ ♪♪ [ Speaks indistinctly ] ♪♪ ♪♪ That's where I'm going to be.
♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ [ Clicking ] [ Horn honking ] -Uh, the garage is right here.
You see that wall and all the stuff?
There's a chest back there, and all that stuff is on that chest, and that chest hasn't been opened, um -- Probably about 15 to 20 years ago.
[ Laughs ] -Watch out.
-The handle broke.
[ Laughter ] Okay.
Let's see what's in there.
-That was hard.
[ Laughs ] -Nah.
This was the last picture, basically, we have of my father before he passed.
My dad was a short, stocky guy, but he was a tough guy.
He never took anything from, uh -- from anybody.
He was a good dad, a good dad.
-What did he tell you about the war years?
What do you know?
Very little stuff.
Uh...um... [ Sighs ] -Why do you think that was?
-Maybe he didn't want to remember, you know?
-We're all -- you know, have our own things going on in life, busy doing this, doing that, doing that.
You know, some things just, you know, get pushed behind or -- -His, uh, uniform, maybe?
But it is very important, you know, to the family, yeah.
That's -- That's your family.
That's family history right there.
♪♪ Oh, wow!
Look at that!
-We didn't know this.
-Oh, this is it.
This is a -- This is a diploma from the school, right?
-"Military Intelligence Service..." -It gives me goosebumps.
-That's the one.
Never into detail, even, you know, mentioned that he was part of the MIS.
Didn't know what it was, the abbreviation, what it was or anything.
-This probably -- This handwritten one.
Left Guam June 1945.
-Oh, there you go.
-There it is.
-There you go.
"Occupation -- interpreter."
I think this is it.
Or it's a history that he wrote.
The dates... -Oh, my God.
-...the place where he went.
Here are some dates here, too.
This is... -"Terry Doi was one of the first GIs to land on Iwo Jima.
There's a story about him people tell, which goes something like this.
He was continuously going into caves with a knife and flashlight and hollering to the enemy to get the hell out or else.
♪♪ Mr. Doi's middle name is now Guts."
-Yeah, that's good.
♪♪ ♪♪ [ Keyboard clacking ] [ Computer dinging ] [ Printer whirs ] [ Clicking ] -Grant Ichikawa volunteered.
He attended MIS Camp Savage, Minnesota, 1942, and he got field commission, commission to officer.
And this is his assignment, one of them, in Southwest Pacific area.
During his service, he's got awarded -- I don't know what unit this was.
He performed something unusual, and he got awarded a Bronze Star on October '45.
-That's a Bronze Star right there.
-That's kind of a big medal, though, a Bronze Star.
-A Bronze Star.
-No, that's the lowest one.
-It's still something, though, right?
[ Laughs ] -That's the lowest medal there -- there is.
I don't know what I got that for.
-Because when you went up, uh, into the mountains and you got all the Japanese to surrender.
You remember that?
-No, it's not for -- It's not for that.
I don't know.
I really don't know.
-[ Chuckles ] -[ Grunts ] Yeah, I talked a number of the head men to surrender, and they -- Got a whole bunch of them come out and surrender.
-You remember that?
-Do you remember doing that?
-Oh, yeah, I remember that.
-So you know what this trip is all about?
-He's gonna have a meeting with a bunch of folks I guess he's been e-mailing on this MIS project, right?
-Yeah, I'm going to meet with Seiki.
You don't know that name.
I want to meet him before I pass on.
-Me and Seiki compiled 10,000 names.
I wanted to meet him before I -- before I keel over.
-He wants to come here and meet me.
I was surprised when I saw the e-mail, you know?
But all this time, it was not necessary for us to meet.
The Internet is a fantastic machine for collaboration, you know?
We've been collaborating for 10 years.
-We always ask Seiki when we don't have the answer.
In fact, I put him in a historian category because when I'm stuck with a name, I ask Seiki.
You know, when you start working on things, you know, you exchange e-mails so often.
[ Indistinct conversations ] You're in communication, so, you know, you -- I guess you just feel there's no need to call.
When you're all finished and you sit -- you sit down and then you think, "I haven't even met the guy," you know?
That's something I have to do be-- You know, in my life.
-This the registry?
-We spent about three, four years compiling the Military Intelligence Service Registry, the list of all the people that went to that school.
-We used to go to Kinko to get this printed.
-Up until then was the last name and initial for your first name.
That's all there was.
-And you see all these initials right here?
You see the trouble they gave us, the War Department?
This is the problem I go through.
Yamamoto and Nakamura, they produce, you know -- A fairly large number of pages of Nakamuras.
When Niseis were serving in Marine units, their rosters were not in the archive, like, from the Marines or, like, from the Navy.
There were a lot of guys who were shipped into the Navy, as well, in the Pacific, okay?
Their rosters are gone because they considered Nisei assignment in the Navy or in the Marines as TDY -- temporary duty.
We didn't get the rosters, so they're lost to history.
-This is the record of Bud M. Nakasone, and he was in Fort Snelling 1945 and '46.
-The young people especially do not know anything about it.
The older people, World War II vintage, do have some appreciation, but as far as all young people are concerned, it would be a big surprise to me if they were interested and/or know about the MIS.
Camp Savage started in May of '42.
There were those that didn't want a larger group of Japanese-Americans come to their state, so Colonel Rasmussen went all over the Midwest and other places trying to find a place to transfer the school, and as it turned out, Minnesota was the first and best place he found.
Governor Stassen of Minnesota said, "You're welcome to set up a school here."
And when Savage became too small, they said, "Well, we have a place here in Fort Snelling," and that's when the school moved completely over to Fort Snelling, and it was a great move, yeah.
And Company C is where I was.
♪♪ This is MIS building, the headquarters for Military Intelligence Service Language School.
It was cold, as I remember it.
Five degrees below zero.
I had never seen anything like that.
I was from Hawaii, and we didn't have snow in Hawaii.
♪♪ [ Keyboard clacks ] -Masaji Inoshita.
I got him.
I can see that.
You see this number?
If the first digit of his serial number is a "1," he's a volunteer.
He volunteered from Gila River, a concentration camp, Arizona.
He arrived in February of '44 in CBI -- China, Burma, India.
They had a real rough time, these guys.
They were always behind the line, you know?
Behind the Japanese line.
-This could be embarrassing.
I have no idea what's in it.
-There's nothing embarrassing in this.
-Oh, it's made out of bamboo or straw.
-So it's light.
They make this in Japan or they made it...?
-I made it in Japan.
-They were moving their -- They called it a... [Speaking Japanese] [Speaking Japanese] means to transport troops, and they dealt with this stuff.
-Well, this doesn't look like -- Well, what are these?
-World War II guys got to use the leggings, which was part of World War I, too.
-Strap down your shoes?
You strapped down your shoes and laced -- laced this up.
That's my volunteer number.
-What rank is that?
Is it -- -Staff sergeant.
-Staff sergeant "T"?
-Tech staff sergeant, meaning I'm not a military person but a person that's on military things and... -You're nonmilitary?
-Yeah, well, my work was nonmilitary -- translation and stuff like that.
My background was sufficient, where I could speak Japanese reasonably well.
I went to India, Burma.
The British were trying to stop the Japanese from going into India.
I don't even know if I was officially transferred to the British or not, but it looked like that.
♪♪ I served on the front lines for over a year.
It says "notes to interrogators."
It says, "Interrogation Teams are an innovation in the Army.
Interrogators will be asked many questions and will be called upon for instructions.
It is to assist interrogators in this orientation that this mimeograph has been compiled."
It says, "First, dos and don'ts of the unit.
First, don't fail to disarm the prisoner of war."
[ Laughs ] It says, "Prisoners of war are the best source of information of the enemy, only if properly handled."
Does this look familiar?
I remember going through something like that.
What I was doing, when a prisoner would come in, first thing I did is, without even looking at him, I'd just give him two atabrine tablets.
The atabrine tablet is an antimalarial tablet.
And then I'd question him, and if he sounds like a person that I could, you know, deepen my questioning, I would say, "Uh, I got to have a smoke," and I'd light two cigarettes, and they were all American brands.
He'd be looking at me with eyes about that big, you know?
"Don't talk to the PW.
Don't permit the PW to talk."
"Don't give him anything to eat, drink, smoke, or permit other officers to do so until they have been interrogated."
Well, you weren't supposed to give him anything.
-In about 40 minutes, his whole complexion would change because he's no longer suffering from, uh... a fever, you know?
No -- No fever.
"I feel better.
I feel good.
-Well, you didn't follow orders.
-No, but I was the most successful.
The point is, did I get the job done?
And a commanding officer says, "You're doing three times' work of the other guy," you know?
-It's not like you were torturing these guys.
-Well, I never tortured prisoners.
-Did that happen?
-They always -- They always told us to be careful with prisoners, don't torture them.
We were told by the British officers.
"You can question, talk to them."
But I was -- I was going one step farther, enticing them by -- by my actions.
Did you see the picture where the woman has got a dog... and she's going in to talk to prisoners and so forth?
-You're talking, what, Abu Ghraib?
These are the things that upset me a lot.
They can cooperate with the prisoner to where they can get a proper response.
Oh, I thought that was awful.
If that's what the U.S. people demanded from their interrogators, they did a terrible job.
-This is one of the hardest thing I do, is climb stairs and go downstairs.
My knees just taking it.
I was in the 11th grade, and the principal shuffled us out to the gymnasium to hear this spiel about recruiting.
Out of the 40 guys or so that were there, I was the only one that volunteered.
Everybody in school used to say... "paradise of the Pacific."
I am saying, "A bunch of bull."
That's the only reason I joined the Army.
It had no other reason.
It got me out of the plantation, and they offered me a... scholarship -- really, a scholarship, to get out of there.
That's the only reason.
It doesn't have -- All these other guys had loyalty and fight for the country!
I didn't have any of that.
I just wanted out of the plantation.
Without the Army, I would have been nothing.
I would have been a mule driver on the sugar plantation.
-Oh, they don't use mules, and they don't have sugar plantations anymore.
They don't have any sugar plantation anymore.
I used to weigh less than 120 pounds.
When I enlisted, the guy says... "Well, we'll let you go."
I was something like 118 pounds.
You're supposed to be 120 pounds and up.
And this major, when he swore me in -- I was alone.
Nobody else was there in the federal building in Hilo.
When he raised his hand, tears is coming down this major, right?
[ Chuckles ] Boy, I got chills!
Even now, you know?
[ Laughs ] Gee.
I think he had a son like me... in the service someplace.
I'm a computer guy, right, from long time ago.
They first hired me as a computer operator, and I slowly learned how to program from that, yeah.
I wiped it out.
What was his name?
Oh, I got a problem now.
I killed it.
Oh, no, I have a recovery.
I have a recovery.
I'm a loner.
I work alone.
The kind of binges I was in made me shut off everybody else and just get to my work, do my work, you know?
That's all I did.
-Yeah, he's a -- he's a social isolationist.
The experience of connecting with people like Grant -- he's learned a lot.
Been very interesting... and sometimes entertaining.
[ Computer beeps ] -Save it.
-Well, she has a bloated definition of my learning.
-[ Laughs ] -I didn't learn anything about, you know -- It's just a list, right?
I searched for a list.
That's not difficult work.
♪♪ -I think a lot of veterans who didn't want to talk about it for a long time because of -- They saw a lot of things that they didn't want to spend a lot of time remembering -- look back on that time and... kind of process it mentally and emotionally.
I don't think he saw much that was so horrible.
-So I don't think that was a strong motivation for him, but I suspect it was for some of the people he was talking to.
-And I never meet any of these guys.
I collect the names here.
That's the story of my life.
I get their names.
I got more than 7,000 names here in this computer, but I never see their faces.
♪♪ -Is this the Minnesota you remember?
-I don't remember any of this stuff.
Pleasure meeting you for the first time.
-The first time.
-[ Laughs ] -You're Seiki?
-I'm Seiki, yes.
-I'll be darned.
-I'll be darned.
-I'll be darned.
I'll be darned.
[ Laughter ] [ Keyboard clacks, computer chimes ] ♪♪ [ Indistinct conversations ] ♪♪ -He thought, "Well, yeah, you know, I really should have gotten a Congressional Medal of Honor," considering that he saved his entire unit.
That's something that he always felt cheated by.
-Dad, did you see this one?
♪♪ His commanding officer had told another Marauder he didn't think that a Jap should get that high honor, anyone of Jap descent should not get that high an honor, and so he wasn't going to recommend him.
-That's the river.
Do you remember doing that?
-Yeah, we had to do that.
-They're crossing the river, and they're all naked.
[ Both laugh ] Do you remember that, taking your clothes off?
-Uh, no, I didn't do it.
[ Speaks indistinctly ] ♪♪ -My dad was really cute.
He said, "This is probably the last time I'm going to see a lot of my friends."
And I said, "Well, you are 100 years old."
He said, "Oh, no, no, no.
I mean the other guys.
You know, they might not be around."
It may not be his last reunion.
Okay, I guess we'll just take the elevator down to ground transportation.
You know, I really wanted to be supportive for my dad.
I think he must have suffered from PTSD.
♪♪ In his generation, it was when Japanese Nisei men didn't really talk about their feelings.
♪♪ -God bless you.
Thank you for your service.
-Oh, that's cute.
He had a very interesting childhood, where he was raised by his grandparents, and his grandfather was a samurai.
He just grew up in a totally different culture, different era, and so, you know, he just never talked about stuff, and, you know, his personality really, really changed.
Like, he was very, very quiet.
You know, as my support for a lot of his activities and then the recognition by the military community and his exploits in Merrill's Marauders has all of a sudden sort of reached this height, you know, and especially now that he's this cute little man.
And so I'm sort of making up for lost time.
-In memory of all... -Good health!
[ Indistinct conversations ] -Ohh!
-We'll all be together next year.
-Break my mug, and I might have to hurt you, Stan.
-Merrill's Marauders were an Army unit that was sent in to do an impossible task and left to die without evacuation.
Their mission was simply to go behind enemy lines and harass the Japanese supply lines.
The mission was to protect China so that if that fell, the United States was afraid that that whole East Asian area would fall.
[ Chatter ] Roy was assigned to my father's platoon, so my father and Roy fought together.
-He saved a lot of lives.
-He saved our lives.
-He stood up and started to yell commands to the enemy, so the enemy was confused during the middle of an attack.
-He started hollering, "Bonsai," and all that, you know, and I believe 50 or 60 Japanese were dead there on that -- on that one day.
-Military history just doesn't really interest me.
It's sort of against my moral values to really want to know about it and honor people for it, you know, so it's very conflicting for me to be here now at this reunion 'cause they're just all patting Dad on the back for 54 dead Japs, you know, and I'm like, "Oh, my God."
You know, to me, it's just something that was a survival tactic, and I understand that, but, you know, I -- I don't know how he feels about yelling in Japanese to charge.
I mean, I know that Americans see it as heroic.
I don't know how he really feels about it.
I mean, I'm sure he's got to feel conflicted about it, knowing that he was responsible for these -- you know, direct deaths of all these people.
[ Chatter ] -♪ Happy birthday, dear Roy ♪ ♪ Happy birthday to you ♪ [ Cheers and applause ] -Make a wish, Roy, and go right ahead and blow them out.
-[ Blowing ] -Wow.
[ Laughter ] -Oh, no!
Your shirt, Dad!
[ Cheers and applause ] -Good job, Roy!
[ Mouse clicks ] -Perhaps the greatest Japanese-American war hero of World War II in the Pacific was Sergeant Frank Hachiya.
-Most people think racism is -- You know, that's a "down South" thing.
Hood River was, like, this center of racial tension and issues during World War II because of all the Japanese people that lived here.
And, so, one of those people was named Frank Hachiya.
♪♪ -"Frank Hachiya's dramatic story would've been portrayed in a movie, but it was considered to be just too unbelievable.
The 1942 military evacuation from the West Coast of all persons of Japanese ancestry resulted in Frank Hachiya going to the Minidoka Relocation Center in Hunt, Idaho.
He volunteered for combat duty.
Because he had some knowledge of Japanese, he was assigned to military intelligence duty in the Pacific."
-So, this is kind of a weird thing.
Government says, "We don't want Japanese on the West Coast.
We're going to put them in camps 'cause we have to watch them."
but if you're joining the Army, why would they really want a Japanese person to join an intelligence service?
-They can be double agents.
-Well, they could be double agents.
-They speak the language.
-They speak the language.
That's the big part.
[ Laughter ] -And so they... -"Double agents."
-They speak the language.
-And, so, with them speaking the language, it means they can intercept radio, so they can get through the radio signals.
They can interrogate.
So they want people that speak Japanese.
-"Several months before the invasion of Leyte, that famous battleground in the Philippines, he volunteered for intelligence work behind the enemy lines.
By the time of the invasion, he had mapped out the complete Japanese defenses for Leyte.
When the invasion began, he started to crawl out in front of the Japanese lines toward the landing American troops."
-Nobody quite knows who shot him.
So, there's Japanese snipers that were going around shooting people.
There was Japanese in the grove that were shooting across.
And then his own unit was shooting.
And so it could've been any of those three.
So, he gets shot, and it's bad, but he's able to, like, make his way across the field, relay the message, and then he dies.
-"Nevertheless, he managed to crawl far enough to lay the maps showing the island's defenses at the feet of an American officer.
Though he died, his courage resulted in the saving of the lives of thousands of his countrymen."
-At the same time that Frank died -- So, here in Hood River, there was a list of servicemen, and 16 of the names were Japanese names.
-And this honor roll on the side of the Hood River County Courthouse included the names of more than 1,600 young men and women who were serving in the Valley.
-People came in, and they scratched the names of all the Japanese servicemen that were there because they hated Japanese people so much -- or there was a group of people in Hood River that hated Japanese people so much.
-The act received national notoriety.
-And so Hood River gets this kind of eye of the country on them going, you know, "This is wrong.
You guys are going nuts up there."
And that's not enough to really fix everything.
It took four years, get people enough time to kind of cool down, that they were allowed to bring Frank's body back and have him buried in the cemetery back home.
Any other questions about that?
Thank you, guys, for listening.
Tell this story to other people.
Remember the story.
Not Chia Pets.
♪♪ ♪♪ -It's something that I, uh -- I feel great about, that I'm working with Indian people.
They consider me as an Indian.
♪♪ I didn't pretend to be an Indian.
I was an Indian, as far as that goes.
♪♪ The thing that perhaps stretches people's imagination is the fact that, for two years, I was kind of handed over to an Indian woman to look after me.
We grew up as Indian.
When I went to grammar school, I still spoke the Apache language.
Even today as a member of Post 84, which is the Indians who live out on the desert here in the local area, they classify me as a Hopi.
Well, they always welcome me.
I'm always welcome.
-Mr. Mas here.
-Mr. Mas is our, uh -- -How are you?
-Pleasure to meet you, sir.
-Good to meet you, sir.
-We had an internment camp here on our community, Japanese internment camp, and he was there.
-And then when he -- -Hey!
Good to see you!
[ Chatter ] -This is a parade for Ira Hayes, the war hero on Iwo Jima.
♪♪ -Closing in on Mount Suribachi on Iwo Jima, enemy mortars hold the entire island in range.
-What happened is, Ira Hayes' company was 270 men when they first entered into battle on that morning of attack on Iwo Jima.
There was only 22 men left.
They pointed out six men to raise this flag, and among them was Ira Hayes, and this Ira Hayes thing became a national Indian event.
-Whenever you say you're ready to walk... -Okay.
-...we'll get them to stop.
-I've been in training for about a month and a half.
[ Laughs ] -Two girls!
-Thank you, Dakota!
-When the US Army found Japan attacking Pearl Harbor, well, they thought all the Japanese were terrible people, and so about 13,000 of us were sent to this reservation.
-And so we were part of this reservation.
Actually, what happened is that when the federal government went to the reservation saying, "We're going to build a detention center on your land," the tribal authorities here opposed the building of the campsite.
But like a lot of federal operations, they didn't stop at just a request.
They brought in bulldozers, and they brought in all that fancy equipment, and they created Gila River Detention Center without an Indian approval.
[ Polka music playing ] ♪♪ The US Army acting on its own went and dealt with the Indians.
They were treated pretty much like the Japanese were treated.
They were moved around from place to place with no personal lives going to the Indians at all.
You were an Indian.
That was your mark on you, and you were put into a reservation.
When Japan attacked Pearl Harbor... -Yeah.
-...all the Japanese were suspects.
-Yeah, I know.
-And so consequently we got sent to camps.
-And one of the camps was right here.
-Oh, I didn't know that.
-And I volunteered out of the camp here.
When I joined in November of '42, I didn't have to.
I mean, the American Army did not want us.
We had to petition or say, "Hey, we will be good soldiers.
We will do this and that.
We will be interpreters, translators."
That's how I joined.
There were lots -- Other people, they remained in camp.
They didn't have to volunteer.
In fact, they wouldn't volunteer.
The reason I joined the Army is that I felt the time had come where the Niseis cannot argue what their position is.
They have to make a great sacrifice for the American people to understand what we represent, why we do these things.
It sounds like I'm trying to promote myself, but that's not the truth.
It was just a feeling I had.
And I talked to a couple of people, and we wound up with 22 volunteers.
[ Cheers and applause ] -[Speaks indistinctly] of Japanese ancestry.
-You guys gave me a name.
CPA, Central Pacific Area, 8th Radio Squadron.
He was working in Guam.
And the reason why he's in Guam... ...because that's where the Air Force put them.
You guys talk to Okada?
You couldn't find him, right?
He's probably dead already, too.
♪♪ -Well, you know, as is often said, we wish we'd had the chance to talk to him.
He's a mystery, you know?
We know so little about him, and it's a shame.
Who was this guy who created arguably the great Japanese-American novel?
You know, John Okada's "No-No Boy" is a foundational work of Asian-American literature that captured the anger, fury of Japanese America after World War II.
Studied in classrooms nationwide.
Continues to live as a piece of literature, not just Asian-American literature, but American literature.
John Okada has been a central... focus of my life since the '70s.
And then I moved to Seattle.
And part of the appeal was it was John Okada country.
I would have liked to have learned from him what he felt, what he knew, and what he saw.
♪♪ We know that John Okada learned Japanese here in Seattle as did most Nisei going to Japanese language school after grammar school.
So when he had enlisted in the Army, he was given training as an interpreter of Japanese.
John Okada saw both sides of World War II.
I mean, he lived through the eviction and incarceration of Japanese Americans.
But then through his MIS experience, he also saw the firebombing of Tokyo.
He was on B-24s dropping leaflets over Tokyo.
He read propaganda messages to the Japanese imploring them to surrender.
Comes back to Seattle and realizes this is an epic story and that he had the impulse to tell it.
♪♪ I come by here on the bus to work every day.
Bus turns the corner, and, you know, daily reminded, confronted with the world that he lived in and the world that he created in his imagination and the world of postwar Seattle.
If I had to describe "No-No Boy," it's very much in the style of some of the great noir writers of the time.
It's dark, it's raw, and it's real.
Does not put on any kind of face for the public which Japanese America was doing at the time, you know, trying to blend in, assimilate.
And for the longest time, I always regarded it as being simply the story of the camps and the aftermath of camps in Japanese America, but it's also the other side, too.
It is about the firebombing of Tokyo, and it's about the madness of war.
♪♪ John Okada died before the secret of the MIS was revealed to the American public.
From what his children tell me, he did not talk about his novel to them while he was alive, and it's unlikely that he talked much about his MIS service to them, perhaps because it was still a secret or perhaps because he simply didn't want to burden them with the knowledge and the legacy of camps and World War II.
-"Can any of you gentlemen help this daughter of a deceased veteran?
She is in agony not knowing what her father did in the war and maybe other things, as well.
I do not find him readily on any MIS registry lists."
[ Indistinct conversations ] -Is that the registration line?
[ Indistinct conversations ] -Oh, "H," yeah.
[ Woman speaking indistinctly ] Oh, okay.
[ Indistinct conversations ] Hi.
This is what?
-I forgot to mention that you line up by the veteran's name, the actual members of the original units.
-We line up by veteran's last name.
-Line up by the veteran's last name.
What line is this?
G -- G.L.?
-G to L. -L. Okay.
I'm in the right line.
I think you're going to be on TV... -Huh?
-No, you are.
[ Laughs ] [ Indistinct conversations ] -The Congressional Gold Medal is the highest award given to a civilian in the United States.
And so in order to get it, both the Senate and the House have to pass a legislation, and it has to be signed by the president.
And in that original proposal for the Congressional Gold Medal, it only included the 442nd Regimental Combat Team and the 100th Infantry Battalion.
As the legislation moved forward, one of the senators had said, "What about the MIS?"
And she had proposed to add an amendment that would include the MIS as recipients of the Congressional Gold Medal.
I'm not sure why the MIS wasn't there in the first place.
You know, our history textbooks don't really say anything about it.
I didn't even know who the MIS was 'til I started working on this legislation.
How's it going?
-Haven't seen you in ages.
-Oh, my God!
You're like 92 now, aren't you?
The first time I met Grant was when I decided, "Let's go make some visits to the Senate."
We really had to get their attention.
It was a guy from Missouri, and, usually, they only give you about 20 minutes max to, like, talk about your issue.
This guy listened to war stories from Grant for 45 minutes.
It was awesome.
He's the ultimate lobbyist 'cause he's a great storyteller.
-Which camp were you?
And then from Gila, you got drafted?
-No, I volunteered.
-It was the first -- -You were the first class.
-First -- No, not the class, but the first volunteer for any Army unit.
-And, so, that was in what?
-When I look at Grant and his motivation to do this at the age of 91, my interpretation is that something did click with him where he was like, "Wow, we're old, we're not going to be here much longer, so we have to do this now."
-There's not a lot on the MIS.
Just not enough, you know?
-Well, maybe we're told not to talk too much.
You know, we've been told, "Keep quiet, stay low, don't stick your head up too much."
-So it's part of our nature.
In the background all the time.
-In the background.
-I'm coming out slowly.
I wore my hat, see?
Yeah, yeah, yeah.
-It's got "Military Intelligence Service" on it.
-Yes, you can see that.
-Oh, you can see that.
-Today, we are having here, in the Emancipation Hall of the United States Congress, the award of the Congressional Gold Medal.
And this is a recognition of the Japanese-American service to the country in Europe, as well as the Pacific.
Let me say, this is a day for all Japanese-Americans.
I think that this is a day that we can feel very proud.
-You served your country despite being subjected to hurtful slurs and deep suspicion from many of your fellow citizens.
-They did everything that was ever asked of them and more, and what is most remarkable is that they did so despite the fact that our nation, at times, fell short.
[ Applause ] -Wait.
I don't -- He's got them spellbound.
They want to talk to you, too, though.
I don't... -Are you tired or...?
-No, I'm alright, but... -Well, the camera crew moved over there, and they'd still like to interview whenever you're ready, because we were told we have to move over there after these interviews were completed.
-Well, I don't know whether they want me or not.
-Oh, they did.
They specifically requested you.
-So, one issue a lot of times that the Asian-American community faces is that we're just pushed aside, and a lot of it has to do with numbers.
We don't have the numbers.
We're a minority of minority groups.
The world can see things as very black and white or black, white, and Latino, and we don't get talked about a lot.
I thought that this was a really big thing for the Asian-American community, because it's not like every day, the stories of one of our communities gets told.
[ Birds chirping ] -My dad passed away on April 21, 2014, and it was the day after Easter.
He had a really, really great day the day before he died, and then he just never woke up the next morning.
That was a good way to go, but we weren't really expecting it that soon.
We thought he was going to last for his 101st birthday, and he just died two weeks short of that.
My dad was a bona fide hoarder.
It was something that my sister and I never really wanted to deal with, and he didn't want us to touch his stuff.
[ Sighs ] Let's see.
Oh, that's funny.
I think I gave this to my dad for Father's Day one year, and I had no idea that Old Spice is really gross and that he would never use it.
[ Laughs ] Let's see.
I was really wondering about how he felt about Hiroshima being bombed.
That was the place where he grew up, and I know he loved it.
He loved going fishing with his grandfather.
How did he feel about his hometown being bombed and being just, you know, obliterated?
Oh, I know what's over here.
My dad's gone now, so I don't think I'll ever get answers to some of those questions.
But now, you know, in retrospect, I wish I would have asked him.
By the time I thought about asking him, he was pretty weak and didn't really want to talk about those things, and so he just would want to enjoy the present, so I didn't want to burden him with asking those kinds of questions.
You'll love this.
It's labeled "blue suitcase."
It's a little dusty.
It should say "dusty suitcase."
And I think this has a whole bunch of my dad's treasures in it that I haven't really even looked through yet.
You know, when he was alive, I never came up here and looked at any of this stuff.
This is all his stuff.
♪♪ So, I feel kind of nosy reading these, but I guess since my dad passed away, I guess it's okay.
Here's Male magazine.
"Dramatic exposé: How Merrill's brave Marauders were sold down the river."
[ Laughs ] Oops!
She's wearing clothing.
Oh, here it is.
"Were sold down the river."
Yeah, but I had no idea that he was in these magazines or they even had anything about the Marauders.
Let's see what's in here.
♪♪ There's Veteran of Foreign Wars, 1944.
He was a card-carrying Buddhist.
-So I just told him... -Yes.
Yeah, the power greater than us.
Is the fourth one the Debo?
Now, what's Debo?
♪♪ ♪♪ -♪ Gather 'round me ♪ ♪ Everybody ♪ ♪ Gather 'round me ♪ ♪ While I preach some ♪ ♪ Feel a sermon ♪ ♪ Coming on me ♪ ♪ The topic will be sin ♪ ♪ And that's what I'm agin' ♪ ♪ If you wanna hear my story ♪ ♪ Then settle back and just sit tight ♪ ♪ While I start reviewing ♪ ♪ The attitude of doing right ♪ ♪♪ ♪ You've got to accentuate the positive ♪ ♪ Eliminate the negative ♪ ♪ And latch on...♪ -"The Registry" is available on Amazon Prime Video ♪ You got to spread joy ♪ ♪ Up to the maximum ♪ ♪ Bring gloom down to the minimum ♪