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Sister’s Trauma from being Incarcerated during World War II

I – I was as a child, much more accepting of everything. I have a sister, Akiko, who went off to become a cadet nurse, and she – she blocked out camp altogether. When I began to get more curious about some things, and I asked her about the camp, she said, “I wasn’t in camp.” And it – you know, I didn’t push her and say, “Yes you were in camp, I was there with you,” I just kind of let it go because I think it was the training of not talking back to your older sisters. So I just kind of said, “Well I remember when you went to cadet nursing school,” which means she had to go from somewhere, she didn’t go from – you know, to let her know I knew that she was in camp. But it’s not like I argued with her.


imprisonment incarceration sisters World War II World War II camps

Date: November 8, 2018

Location: California, US

Interviewer: June Berk

Contributed by: Watase Media Arts Center, Japanese American National Museum

Interviewee Bio

Takayo Fischer, born in November 1932, is a Nisei American stage, film, and TV actress. During World War II, as a young child, she and her family were forcibly evacuated from the West Coast and spent time in the Fresno Assembly Center before being relocated to Jerome and Rohwer concentration camps. Fischer later lived in Chicago, Illinois, where, as a young adult, she won the crown of “Miss Nisei Queen.” She has appeared in dozens of major Hollywood films, including Moneyball (2011), Pirates of the Caribbean: At World's End (2007), The Pursuit of Happyness (2006), and Memoirs of a Geisha (2005). She also appeared in the stage production of The World of Suzie Wong in New York in 1958 and many productions with East West Players in Los Angeles. (June 2018)

Jimmy Naganuma
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Jimmy Naganuma

Family welcomed at Crystal City

(b. 1936) Japanese Peruvian incarcerated in Crystal City

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Jimmy Naganuma
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Jimmy Naganuma

First meal at Crystal City

(b. 1936) Japanese Peruvian incarcerated in Crystal City

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Kazumu Naganuma
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Kazumu Naganuma

His sister Kiyo was like a second mother to him

(b. 1942) Japanese Peruvian incarcerated in Crystal City

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Mia Yamamoto
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Mia Yamamoto

Impact of her father

(b. 1943) Japanese American transgender attorney

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Ben Sakoguchi
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Ben Sakoguchi

Coming back from camp

(b. 1938) Japanese American painter & printmaker

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