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December 7, 1941 - Japan attacks Pearl Harbor.

This was the beginning of World War II for United States against the Japanese, and marked the beginning of a long struggle for the Japanese American community. For Sox, Aiko, and Cherry - each of them had an experience following the bombing that told them this would not bode well for themselves or their families.

Sox's mother and sister were horrified at the news, keenly aware of the potential consequences to come.

Aiko, a senior in high school, was at a dance when news of the bombing broke. She knew this would trouble, although she could not know how badly it would become.

Cherry was with her father, who was deeply upset by the news, because he knew this would affect the family significantly in the near future.

Lorraine was not born yet, but her parents and grandparents were in the camps because of this day.

The attack on Pearl Harbor gave way to times of racism, discrimination, violations of civil rights not just by non-Japanese Americans but actually brought about by the United States government as an institution. Each woman in her own way persevered despite these hardships, and shaped their sufferings and struggles into positive energy to advocate on behalf of their families and others who experienced the wartime era and lived through the difficulties of resettling and reclaiming their lives.

Sources: Densho Digital Archive, http://archive.densho.org/main.aspx., Visual History Collection: Densho Visual History Collection: Aiko Yoshinaga Herzig, Cherry Kinoshita, and Lorraine Bannai Interviews; Kitashima, Tsuyako Sox and Morimoto, Joy K., The Birth of an Activist: The Sox Kitashima Story. San Mateo: Asian American Curriculum Project, 2003.

Photo: Densho Digital Archive, http://archive.densho.org/main.aspx., Photo/Document Collections: National Archives and Records Administration Collection.

cshikai — Última actualización Mar 30 2011 7:56 p.m.

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