Japantown Task Force executive director passes

Japantown Task Force, Inc. Executive Director Robert Hamaguchi passed away peacefully in the early hours of Sept. 4 at his home surrounded by family members, after a more than year-long battle with cancer. He was 70. The Japantown Task Force hired Hamaguchi in 2006 as its executive director. He helped formulate and implement the Japantown […]

Soldiers’ Homecoming: Japanese flags returned to families after decades abroad

More than 70 years ago, American soldiers fighting on the frontlines took home souvenirs from the dead bodies of Japanese soldiers. Today, they are finding their way back home to Japan through the efforts of the Obon Society. Based in Astoria, Ore., Rex and Keiko Ziak work full time to accept, catalogue and research Japanese […]

The rediscovered works of Kaneji Domoto

While Kaneji Domoto passed away in 2002 at the age of 89, his work and life have been revived through an exhibit at the Center for Architecture in New York. Domoto, a native of Oakland, Calif., was a New Rochelle, N.Y.-based architect and landscape architect who studied and worked with legendary architect Frank Lloyd Wright, […]

A century of growth

One hundred years ago, Gijiu Kitazawa established the seed company that still bears his name. He first worked as an apprentice for a seed company in Japan before immigrating to the U.S. at the age of 22. In 1916, Gijiu and his brother Buemon started the Kitazawa Brothers Nursery and Seed Company in San Jose, […]

Bone marrow match needed to help save reverend’s life

Japanese American bone marrow donors are needed to potentially save the life of the Rev. Shuichi “Thomas” Kurai, who was diagnosed with T-cell leukemia-lymphoma in January. As is the case with most minority populations, the potential Japanese American donor count in the national marrow and stem cell registry is extremely low. According to Mylanah Yolangco, […]

REFLECTING UPON A GOLDEN MOMENT: Olympic icon Kristi Yamaguchi prepares for 25th anniversary performances

At first glance, this was like any other morning at the Dublin Iceland ice rink in the Bay Area. Dozens of young figure skaters were carving up the ice, diligently practicing their spins and turns while dreaming of becoming the next Michelle Kwan, Yuna Kim or Kristi Yamaguchi. But if you looked a little closer, […]

A historical survey of Asian Americans in the Heartland

ASIAN AMERICANS IN MICHIGAN: VOICES FROM THE MIDWEST Edited by Sook Wilkinson and Victor Jew (Detroit: Wayne State University Press, 2015, 384 pp., $34.95, paperback) In 2009, I published an article about Japanese Americans in the Interior West, a field earlier pioneered by two Arizona State University doctoral students, Eric Walz and Andrew Russell. So […]

Korean star Jae-Gyun Hwang powers his way to Giants history

In a dismal season, San Francisco Giants fans had a reason to celebrate June 28. Playing at home versus the Colorado Rockies, Jae-Gyun Hwang made history as the first Korea-born player to suit up for the Giants. In his major league debut, the 29-year-old infielder hit a dramatic, go-ahead home run in the sixth inning. […]

Compassion abounds in intimate journey

GENTLY TO NAGASAKI By Joy Kogawa (Halfmoon Bay, B.C.: Caitlin Press Inc., 2016, 214 pp., $25.95 CAD, paper) “Gently to Nagasaki” is filled with honesty, fragility and deep questioning of opposing forces and ironic encounters that bring writer Joy Kogawa to unravel her truth. Before the memoir begins, Kogawa calls upon the Goddess of Mercy, […]

An entertaining and insightful exploration of humanity

KILLING AND DYING By Adrian Tomine (New York: Drawn & Quarterly, 2016, 121 pp., $22.95, hard cover) “Killing and Dying,” the latest collection of short graphic stories from Adrian Tomine, is sad, thoughtful and funny. It’s full of memorable characters and situations that reveal uncommon insight about the human condition and human relationships. Plus, it’s […]

Kyplex Cloud Security Seal - Click for Verification