Building a New Life

Many MIS veterans pursued military careers. Chief Warrant Officer James Ishihara was killed in Vietnam in 1963. His Camp Savage classmate, Arthur Ishimoto, attained the highest rank of any nisei World War II veteran, rising to Air Force major general and head of the Hawaiʻi National Guard. Dozens of MIS veterans achieved the rank of colonel, among them Harry Fukuhara, Iwao Yokooji, Charles Moriyama, Henry Furuya and Tatsuo “Rusty” Kawamura.

George Ariyoshi, an MIS nisei who was drafted near the war’s end and served in the occupation of Japan, would become America’s first Asian governor and Hawaiʻi’s longest-serving governor.

Ralph Yempuku, Kazuo Yamane and William Hiraoka were among the MIS veterans who succeeded in business.

Many became educators, including Hawaiʻi education superintendents Teichiro Hirata and Shiro Amioka, University of Hawaiʻi chancellors Paul Miwa, Ralph Miwa and Dick Kosaki and PhDs such as Tom Ige, Shinye Gima and Yoshinobu Oshiro.

Francis Sogi was an international lawyer in New York and Tokyo. Masaji Marumoto became the first Asian American on the Hawaiʻi Supreme Court. Yoshimi Hayashi also became a Supreme Court justice. Bert Tokairin was a federal magistrate. Ben Tashiro, Frank Takao and Andrew Sato became state judges. Ted Tsukiyama was a successful lawyer and arbitrator.

Koji Ariyoshi, whose MIS service included the “Dixie Mission” with Mao Tse-tung in China, came home to be a Hawaiʻi labor leader.

Next: Reunion in Okinawa

Top of page. Photos cropped and used to create the composite image are, left to right: Downtown Honolulu by ErgoSum88, public domain; University of Hawai‘i by George Bacon, Hawai‘i State Digital Archives; Hawai‘i State Capitol – Central Rotunda by Daniel Ramirez, CC2.0; Ali‘iolani Hale by Cristo Vlahos, CC3.0.