442 RCT Anniversary Banquet

Thank you from the 75th Anniversary Banquet planning committee

Thank you from the 442nd Regimental Combat Team 75th Anniversary Banquet planning committee

Contributed by S&D member Mae Isonaga (and 442nd Legacy Center director)

Mahalo to the Sons and Daughters of the 442nd Regimental Combat Team (S&D) for helping make the 442nd RCT’s 75th Anniversary Banquet, “Remembering – With Pride and Gratitude”, a success.  The monetary support and the hours of hard work by the S&D are greatly appreciated by the Banquet Committee.  The monetary donation helped pay registration and parking fees for veterans and their wives and for widows of veterans.  There were 47 veterans registered and 50 wives and widows.  Close to 600 people attended the March 18th, 2018 banquet at the Sheraton Waikiki Hotel.

Special mahalo to Gwen Fujie, who planned a wonderful program with many “chicken skin” moments.  She organized the heartfelt opening procession of the veterans followed by descendants of veterans carrying the 442nd guidons and photographs of veterans who are no longer with us, and the “Okage Sama De” portion of the program where descendants read snippets from letters, news pieces, reports and other material related to the actions of the 442nd.  There’s always so many moving parts to events like these and Gwen took time from her super busy schedule to contribute to the Banquet Committee in significant ways.  She arranged for the Army Band to play, invited exhibitors – the Survivors Support Group and Stacey Hayashi, ran ads on local station KIKU TV, and booked Howard Sugai and Tom Coffman on the news station KGMB “Sunrise” show with Billy V.  Gwen joined the Committee late into the planning, but despite this, her ideas and hard work made the program even better.  Her efforts are very much appreciated.

Mahalo to Juanita Wright Allen, who organized and performed the “Earl Finch Hula” with a group of excellent volunteer dancers.  It was a great way to honor Mr. Finch, who was dearly loved by “the boys.”  This hula should now be included in everyone’s music collection!

S&D President Grace Tsubata Fujii gave a “Special Mahalo” to the 442nd RCT and shared photos of the recently dedicated Memorial Monument at Punchbowl Cemetery.  Grace did a wonderful job, overcoming her untimely laryngitis!

Others who must be acknowledged: Anita Nihei for contacting the JR ROTC from Punahou, who exhibited their keen skills in the procession; Tyrone Tahara, Clayton Ito, Jon Ishihara, Shirley Igarashi, Gail Nishimura, Colleen Hirai, Laura Hirayama and Wayne Kuwata who helped with assembling the favors and name tags.  Tyrone, Clay, Jon, Wayne and Laughlin Tanaka helped with loading material in and out of the Sheraton.  Mahalo to all the descendants who were just awesome in “Okage Sama De.”  Geralyn and Willard Holck kept the procession orderly and helped with set up.  Also helping out were Claudie Deschaseaux Fisher and Francette Deschaseaux Valance, daughters of Monsieur Gerard Deschaseaux (France), who along with 442nd veteran Wilbert “Sandy” Holck, Cannon Co., established the Bruyeres/Honolulu Sister City relationship.  To Pat Murakami, Caitlin Shishido, Jayne Hirata and Drusilla and Stan Tanaka, Annie and Macky Catania and others who helped with numerous duties whose names I have neglected to mention here, mahalo to you!  And last, but not least, mahalo to the dynamic duo of Ann Kabasawa and Clyde Sugimoto, our fabulous photographers who faithfully bring their team of skilled photographers to 442nd events.  You guys are awesome!

image of dancers during the Earl Finch hula

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A Look Back at the 442nd RCT In Commemoration of the 75th Anniversary

A Look Back at the 442nd RCT

442 logoIn Commemoration of the 75th Anniversary of the Establishment of the 442nd Regimental Combat Team, we offer these selected facts and resources, many perhaps well known to you already with others less so, related to the brave and honorable men of the 442nd.  Any errors are inadvertent and the responsibility of the E-/web editor.

◊ U.S. Army Chief of Staff General George C. Marshall approves formation of Nisei combat team on January 1, 1943.  The combat team is formally authorized by President Roosevelt on Feb. 1.

◊ The call for volunteers is issued on January 28, 1943 by the War Department, with a proclamation in Hawaii and by posters, press and other means on the U.S. mainland and later by recruiting teams, and the 442nd is activated on February 1 at Camp Shelby, Mississippi.

◊ Volunteers for the 442nd Regimental Combat Team in the Territory of Hawaii are given an aloha ceremony on March 23, 1943 at Iolani Palace while on the mainland, officers and enlisted men had already begun reporting to Camp Shelby in small groups and individually from February 1.

◊ We must not forget that many mainland Nisei of the 442nd volunteered from internment camps.  Read this series of articles by law professor Geoffrey R. Stone published in the Huffington Post in 2017: https://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/5a10b5e2e4b0e6450602eb9c (Part I), https://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/it-can-happen-here-the-75th-anniversary-of-the-japanese_us_5a121186e4b023121e0e9439 (Part II) and https://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/it-can-happen-here-the-75th-anniversary-of-the-japanese_us_5a135f12e4b05ec0ae8444e2 (Part II) (accessed 2.8.2018).

◊ Volunteers from Hawaii depart on April 4, 1943 for Camp Shelby, arriving 2,686 strong on April 13.

◊ The 442nd RCT begins basic training on May 10, 1943.

◊ The 100th Infantry Battalion (Separate), who had arrived at Camp Shelby in January 1943 from Camp McCoy (Wisconsin), leave Camp Shelby on August 11 and ship out for North Africa on August 21, 1943 where the Battalion joins the 34th Division.

◊ Basic training ends for the 442nd RCT on August 23, 1943 and platoon and company level training begins in October followed by battalion training in November.

◊ Ten officers and 165 enlisted men from the 442nd RCT are transferred to be replacements for the 100th Inf Bn in January 1944 with another 20 officers and 210 enlisted men transferred in February.

◊ The 442nd RCT is reviewed by Army Chief of Staff General George C. Marshall on March 4, 1944.

◊ Another 10 officers and 155 enlisted men are transferred to be replacements for the 100th Inf Bn in (month).

◊ The 442nd RCT (short one infantry battalion) leave Camp Shelby on April 22-23, 1944 and board Liberty ships on May 1.  On May 2 the 442nd ship out from Virginia via convoy for Naples, Italy.  The remainder of 1st Battalion stay at Camp Shelby to later become the 171st that trains replacement personnel for the 442nd for the duration of the war.

◊ The 442nd, minus most of 2nd Battalion whose ships had detoured to Oran (Algeria), arrive at Naples on May 28, 1944.  Most of 2nd Battalion join the rest of the 442nd, who were on the move, on June 17 near Tarquinia, Italy.

◊ The 100th Infantry Battalion (Separate) becomes part of the 442nd RCT on June 11, 1944 and is redesignated the 100th Battalion, 442nd Infantry on Aug 10, 1944 (instead of being designated the 1st Battalion).

◊ The 442nd RCT enters combat on June 26, 1944 near Belvedere, Italy as part of the 34th Infantry Division.

◊ The Anti-Tank Company is detached from the 442nd from July 13-Oct 24, 1944 during which time the men become “glider troops.”

◊ The 442nd RCT take part in the Vosges Campaign (including the liberation of Bruyeres and Biffontaine) and the fighting to rescue the “Lost Battalion” in October and November 1944.

◊ The 100th is detached from the 442nd from Nov 10-28, 1944 and make their way to Menton in Southern France.

◊ The 442nd (less the 522nd FAB) help break the Gothic Line in the Po Valley Campaign in March 1945.

◊ The 522nd FAB is detached from the 442nd on March 15 and pursue German troops into Germany along with other American units.  The 522nd encounter those who had been held in Nazi death camps and sub-camps near Dachau.

◊ The war in Europe ends on May 8, 1945.  Men of the 442nd start being sent back to the U.S. and then on home to their families.

◊ Members of the 442nd RCT march to the White House Lawn on July 16, 1946 and the RCT is presented a seventh Presidential Unit Citation by President Truman.

◊ The 442nd RCT is deactivated in August 1946 but is reactivated in July 1947 as part of the Army Reserve.

◊ The Album, 442nd Combat Team 1943 created by the 442nd (includes photos of each company at Camp Shelby in 1943) and Americans: The Story of The 442d Combat Team by Orville C. Shirey are available online via Peter Wakamatsu’s website at http://www.the442.org/home.html (accessed 2.8.2018)

◊ A selection of photograph’s from the 442nd 10th Anniversary gathering courtesy of the family of Kazutoshi Fujino, Easy Co., is available on the S&D website at this link.

◊ An electronic copy of the 442nd 50th Anniversary booklet, Go For Broke 1943 * 1993 (accessed 2.8.2018), is available on the Densho website in two files at https://ddrstage.densho.org/media/ddr-csujad-1/ddr-csujad-1-207-mezzanine-acdcfc588a.pdf (first file) and at https://ddrstage.densho.org/media/ddr-csujad-1/ddr-csujad-1-207-mezzanine-acea0781ac.pdf
(second file) and an electronic copy of the picture booklet recapping the 50th Anniversary events is found at https://ddrstage.densho.org/media/ddr-csujad-1/ddr-csujad-1-195-mezzanine-0f028d0279.pdf (accessed 2.22.2018).

1995 Homecoming event at Camp Shelby https://ddrstage.densho.org/media/ddr-csujad-1/ddr-csujad-1-46-mezzanine-6e161c6818.pdf (accessed 2.22.2018)

◊ Select Unit Decorations (out of a total of 7)
General Orders awarding the 442nd RCT (less the 522 FAB) a Presidential Unit Citation: http://www.442.us.com/images/GO_34-442_less_522.pdf (accessed 2.7.2018)

General Orders for one of the two Presidential Unit Citations awarded to the 100th Inf Bn: http://www.442.us.com/images/GO_360-100_Oct_44_.pdf (accessed 2.7.2018)

Extract of General Orders awarding the 2nd Bn a Distinguished Unit Citation: (Japanese American Veterans Association file accessed 2.6.2018)

General Orders awarding the 3rd Bn a Presidential Unit Citation: http://www.442.us.com/images/GO_317-3rd_Bn.pdf (accessed 2.7.2018)

General Orders awarding Fox and Love Companies 3rd Bn a Presidential Unit Citation: (Japanese American Veterans Association file accessed 2.6.2018)

General Orders awarding the 232nd Engineers (with the 111th Engineer Combat Bn) a Presidential Unit Citation: http://www.442.us.com/images/GO_425-232_Eng.pdf (accessed 2.7.2018)

Resources
442nd Veterans Club website, http://www.442.us.com

Go For Broke National Education Center website, http://www.goforbroke.org/index.php

442nd Regimental Combat Team website, http://www.the442.org

Americans: The Story of The 442d Combat Team, Orville C. Shirey, 1946. (see link above)

University of Hawaii Japanese American Veterans Collection material, http://manoa.hawaii.edu/library/research/collections/archives/manuscript-collections/japanese-american-veterans-collection/

Boyhood To War: History and Anecdotes of the 442nd Regimental Combat Team, Dorothy Matsuo, 1992.

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Registration Info for the 442nd RCT 75th Anniversary Banquet

2.25.2018 Update
It’s not too late to register for the 75th Anniversary of the 442nd RCT banquet! The deadline has been moved back to March 7. Please share this information with your friends and family.

Important change: The doors will open at 9:30 instead of 10 AM. The plan is to start the procession into the ballroom at 10 AM; we hope folks can be in their seats by then. We made the change to keep the program as short as possible out of respect for our very elderly veterans.

We are looking for volunteers to be Guidon Bearers representing all the 442 companies, to march in the opening procession. We have some volunteers, but are looking for more!

If your veteran loved one is deceased or not able to march in the procession, we are welcoming family members to march behind the Guidon Bearer of their dad/grandpa’s/great-grandpa’s company. Participants are asked to bring an 8” x 10” photo of their loved one in a standing frame to be placed on a table at the end of the procession.

Lastly, we still need participants to read short passages of quotes and poignant messages from soldiers during war time. Participants may also read their own message to their father/grandfather. The messages should be a minute or less.

If you’re interested in volunteering for any of these program activities, please contact Gwen Fujie at gwenfujie@gmail.com, or 888-9374 as soon as possible.

Please see attached registration and procession forms for more information.

Mahalo and see you on the 18th!

The 75th Anniversary Banquet of the 442nd Regimental Combat Team will be on Sunday, March 18, 2018.  The theme is Celebrating with Gratitude and Pride.  Doors will open at 09:30 am, with the program to start at 10:00 am (and ending between 1:30 – 2:00 pm).  The banquet will be at the Sheraton Waikiki Hotel, Hawaii Ballroom.

A Special Request from the planning committee is for the Veterans group photo, which will be at 9:30 am and veterans are asked to be on time for the photo.

Veterans and wives as well as surviving spouses are free. The cost for others is $75.00 per person.

Lunch entrée will be a chicken and short ribs combo. If the Vegetarian option is preferred, please indicate with a check mark on the registration form (see below).

The cost for self-parking is $10; valet parking is $15. Parking for veterans, wives and widows – whether self-park or valet — will be paid for. For those driving a passenger with a wheelchair, someone will assist you at the front entrance of the hotel if you wish to drop off passenger(s).

The deadline to submit reservations and payment is Wednesday, March 7, 2018.  A block of rooms is also being held at the Sheraton Waikiki for those wishing to stay there.  For questions, please contact the 442nd Veterans Club office by phone (808-949-7997) or Email (442veterans@hawaiiantel.net).

Banquet Registration Form

Download (PDF, 318KB)

Grand Procession Registration Form

Download (PDF, 53KB)

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Photos from the 74th 442nd RCT Anniversary Banquet 2017 (3 of 3)

last set of photos of attendees per table

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The 442nd RCT 74th Anniversary Banquet

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By Lynn Heirakuji, S&D member

The 442nd Regimental Combat Team 74th Anniversary Banquet was held at the Sheraton-Waikiki Hotel on Sunday, March 26, 2017. The 442nd Veterans Club sponsored the annual affair, which was attended by about 440 people – 49 Nisei veterans also signed up for the event.

Ken Inouye, son of the late Senator Daniel K. Inouye, served as the Master of Ceremonies and Governor David Y. Ige rendered the moving keynote address. The Governor, son of a 100th Infantry Battalion veteran, reminded the audience of the climate of racial hysteria that gripped the Nation in the aftermath of the 1941 Japanese bombing of Pearl Harbor. This fear and prejudice led the U.S. President to issue Executive Order 9066, which directed the forced internment of over 110,000 Japanese Americans, most of whom were U.S. citizens. He described how despite this, over 14,000 Nisei went on to serve and perform with incredible valor in the U.S. Army during WWII. The Governor noted that the 442nd story is what inspired him to have the State of Hawaii file the recent suit which resulted in the blocking of the current U.S. President’s Executive Order banning travel into America based on nationality and, in effect, religion.

232nd veteran Hiroshi Arisumi and some of his family

232nd veteran Hiroshi Arisumi and some of his family

One of those attending the banquet was 96-year old Nisei veteran Hiroshi Arisumi, who hails from Kula, Maui. Hiroshi served with the 232nd Engineer Combat Company of the 442nd RCT and performed highly dangerous duties including mine clearing. Upon returning from the battlefields of Italy and France, he established the Arisumi Brothers construction company, building residential homes. He also stayed extra busy by serving as President of the Nisei Veterans Memorial Center in Maui for over 20 years. Hiroshi has passed on the story of the 442nd to his children and grandchildren. For fun he grows kaki (persimmon) and cherimoya, the latter which he describes as one of the top three most delicious fruits.

On display at the banquet was an exhibit called the, “Pearl Harbor Students’ Reflections – 442: Live with Honor, Die with Dignity.” The exhibit contained letters from Honolulu Community College (HCC) students in which they shared their reactions to a documentary on the 442nd story. Sharleen Nakamoto Levine who attended the banquet is the HCC instructor who developed the curriculum and brought the exhibit to the banquet. The exhibit was a great example of the many ways in which the 442nd story can be passed on to future generations.

The banquet program also included Mayor Caldwell’s proclamation presentation, a musical tribute sung by Reverend Takamasa Yamamura, an invocation by Bishop Eric Matsumoto, remarks by William Thompson, 442nd Veterans Club President, and the singing of the “Go For Broke” fight song.

Even though there are fewer Veterans attending the banquet each year, the Sons & Daughters are always strong supporters of the event and hope to see it continue as a legacy marker for future generations.

See photos from the banquet.

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Photos 1 of 3

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Photos from the 74th 442nd RCT Anniversary Banquet 2017 (2.5 of 3)

Candid shots from the banquet

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Photos from the 74th 442nd RCT Anniversary Banquet, 2017 (2 of 3)

Scenes from the 2017 74th 442nd Anniversary Banquet at the Sheraton Waikiki

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Photos from the 74th 442nd RCT Anniversary Banquet, 2017 (1 of 3)

Photos of the 442nd veterans that attended this year’s banquet

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UPDATE 2 to 74th 442nd RCT Anniversary Banquet

UPDATE 2 – Assistance Needed

• ALL S&D members and families attending the banquet
Assistance is needed on banquet day:
1) Drivers may be needed to pick up veterans/wives and elder guests and bring to the Sheraton.
2) Help may be needed to escort veterans from drop-off at the Sheraton drive way (by valet service) to the ballroom, before and after the event. Wheelchairs will be available for those who need to use one. Arrival time for volunteers, 8:45 please.
3) Helpers to place favors and centerpieces on tables. Arrival time 8:00.

Please email Mae Isonaga, maeisonaga@mac.com if you can help with any of these duties.

• Come Early! The banquet committee will show a 23 minute documentary, “Senator Inouye: As Told By His Son”, by Gloria Borland. The planned time slot will be approx. 1000, after the picture taking of veterans at 0930.

• Note on menu: There has been a small change to the meat entree, which will now feature chicken only instead of chicken and short ribs. The vegetarian option for those who selected this with your registration will feature portobello ravioli.

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Photos of the 442nd RCT 73rd Anniversary Banquet held on April 10, 2016 (3 of 3)

These are candids and a mix of the shots at this year’s banquet.

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Photos from the 442nd RCT 73rd Anniversary Banquet held on April 10, 2016 (2 of 3)

These are group photos.

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Photos from the 442nd RCT 73rd Anniversary Banquet held on April 10, 2016 (1 of 3)

Thank you to all the photographers of the 442 S&D and friends.

This is the first of series of post with photographs – of a great banquet in honor of our fathers, uncles, grandfathers, heroes.

 

1 - program 2 - favors (534x800)

 

 

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71st Anniversary Banquet

DSC_0031The 442nd’s 71st Anniversary Banquet was held on Sunday, March 23, 2014 at the Pomaika’i Ballrooms at Dole Cannery – Iwilei, Honolulu. The theme of the event was “We Will Never Forget” as an affirmation that the legacy of the 442nd RCT will live on. The program featured a keynote speech delivered by Eric Saul, Military Historian and Curator. Here are photos taken of the event, compliments of Ann Kabasawa, Clyde Sugimoto, Pat Thompson, Wayne Iha, Lowell Tom, Hal Ing, Terry Takaki, and Stan Oka. Click below to open. Read more »

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70th Anniversary Banquet

Honolulu- On Sunday, March 24, 2013, the 442nd’s 70th Anniversary Banquet was held at the Hilton Hawaiian Village. Over 1,100 veterans, families and friends attended the celebration. From the start, the program revolved around the theme, “The Legacy Lives On”, honoring the veterans and sending a clear message: the story of the 442 will live on through the efforts of the next generation. The program also included a special tribute to the late Senator Daniel Inouye, with the keynote speech delivered by Irene Hirano Inouye.

Here are photos taken of the event, compliments of Clyde Sugimoto, Pat Thompson, Wayne Iha, Lowell Thom, Hal Ing, Terry Takaki, and Stan Oka. Click below to open. Read more »

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442 RCT_ 70th Anniversary Memorial Service and Picnic

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A Memorial Service and Family Picnic was held on March 23, 2013 on the grounds of Fort DeRussey as part of the 70th Anniversary celebration.  the Memorial Service was a beautiful and solemn event recognizing the 21 Medal of Honor recipients, followed by a tour of the Army Museum and Family Picnic with a yummy bento, activities for the kids and lucky number give aways for all.  Please enjoy some of the photos of the events below:

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