Nisei Impact: Honolulu Star-Advertiser youth storytelling project honors Hawaii’s Japanese American World War II veterans


Hideo Nimori served in the revered 442nd Regimental Battle Staff.

To the rest of the world, he was a embellished second-­generation Japanese American, or nisei, soldier, who enlisted for the reason that he hoped his encounters all through Globe War II would generate more alternatives when he returned residence.

But to me and my cousins, he was also Grandpa.


COURTESY NIMORI Spouse and children
Jayna Omaye with her grandpa, Hideo Nimori, who served in the 442nd Regimental Overcome Group.

He was the grandpa who was constantly smiling and all set to crack a joke, normally at his own cost or to make mild of my grandma’s yelling. He was the grandpa who would often shed at board video games so that we would win, even if that intended obtaining scoldings from my mom and aunty afterward. He was the grandpa who drove us all over all through summer season breaks in his clunky brown van, though laughing off my grandma’s brutal backseat driving comments. He was the grandpa who was usually there for each individual birthday, anniversary, graduation and family members accumulating. And he was the grandpa who filled my childhood with so a great deal like.

It’s been 10 yrs given that he died, but my family members and I nevertheless chortle and reminisce about all of the delighted recollections we had with him.


The Hideo and Dorothy Nimori (center) with their grandchildren and wonderful grandchildren. From still left to correct: Gwen, Brent, Dallas, Kaiya and Jayna.

Our tale resonates with numerous in the islands, where nisei veterans are portion of quite a few families. Immediately after the war ended, numerous of them attended university via the GI Bill, worked to greater their communities and assisted to adjust Hawaii’s landscape to make it much more inclusive of all those who faced prejudice. Their serv­ice extended far further than the battlefield.

The Nisei Impact youth storytelling job was launched in December to assist share the tales of Hawaii’s nisei veterans, and as aspect of my support with Report for The united states, a nationwide group that places journalists in neighborhood newsrooms to report on under­covered difficulties and communities.

The Honolulu Star- Advertiser is partnering with the nonprofit Nisei Veterans Legacy, which functions to “preserve, perpetuate and share” the legacy of Individuals of Japanese Ancestry who served in the U.S. armed forces in Planet War II.

Five substantial school pupils had been picked out for the inaugural program, assembly over a few months to report on the veterans they chose to compose about. At weekly meetings the learners learned about journalism, creating, reporting, interviewing and more. Most had no journalism expertise, but all of the college students have been passionate about storytelling and finding out more about their nisei veteran.


Nisei Impression youth journalism plan presented by the Honolulu Star-Advertiser, Report for America and Nisei Veterans Legacy. Pictured at the ceremony honoring substantial school learners who participated in the job is from remaining to suitable: Honolulu Star-Advertiser ethnic and cultural affairs reporter Jayna Omaye, Moanalua Significant University university student Daria Stapolsky, Punahou Faculty university student L. Kensington Ono, Kalani Higher Faculty pupil Stephanie Yeung, and Nisei Veterans Legacy president Lynn Heirakuji on Tuesday, April 5, 2022. Not current are Kalani Higher Faculty pupil Marisa Fujimoto and McKinley Higher School scholar Shane Kaneshiro.

The challenge grew to become a truth with help from Honolulu Star-Advertiser President and Publisher Dennis Francis, editors, co-personnel and the tough- functioning volunteers at the Nisei Veterans Legacy, significantly president Lynn Heirakuji.

The 100th Infantry Battalion and 442nd Regimental Fight Crew are acknowledged as amongst the most highly decorated for sizing and size of company in U.S. military services historical past. In 2011, they, along with Japanese American troopers in the Armed service Intelligence Services, who translated and intercepted governing administration documents, ended up collectively awarded the Congressional Gold Medal — the optimum civilian award bestowed by Congress.


The “Go for Broke” motto is stitched onto the hat of Globe War II veteran Kenji Moi who served with the famed 442nd Regimental Overcome Team.

At the stop of March, every student completed writing a profile about a nisei veteran who served. Two of the college students even experienced an option to create about a nisei veteran in their own spouse and children, studying more about their personal historical past and heritage.

Their stories of daily life, hardship, bravery and resilience will be revealed daily starting Monday.

Jayna Omaye handles ethnic and cultural affairs and is a corps member of Report for The us, a national serv­ice group that sites journalists in community newsrooms to report on under­covered troubles and communities.

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