Satoru Ichikawa

Satoru Ichikawa was born in November 1929 to a Buddhist minister and his wife in Fresno, California, the eldest of seven children. His family moved to Seattle in 1936 where he earned a BA in Commercial Art from the University of Washington. During World War II he faced imprisonment at the Minidoka WRA camp. Separated from his father for two years, Ichikawa finally rejoined him at Crystal City, Texas. Married with two children and two grandchildren, he has spoken to many schools about the camp experience. In his free time Mr. Ichikawa enjoys playing pickle ball and strumming in the Ukulele Band of Senior Retirees.

Updated October 2013 

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Speaking Up! Democracy, Justice, Dignity

In My Parents’ Words – Issei Voices from Department of Justice Camps

My father was the resident minister of the Seattle Buddhist Church. The construction of the temple on 14th Avenue & Main Street was nearing completion. It carried a heavy mortgage and payments had to be made. A cornerstone laying ceremony was held on March 16, 1941. These jubilant members had no idea that WWII would start later that year to disrupt their lives.


War broke out between Japan and the U.S. with the bombing of Pearl Harbor, HI on December 7, 1941. Dad was arrested by the F.B.I. in the Spring of 1942. The below is his mug shot. …

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