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JUMP Seattle logosNews Release
August 31, 2016
For more information please contact:
Christa Desrets
(202) 296-6694 x118

Beyond reconciliation: Event to honor Nisei veterans, celebrate U.S.-Japan alliance

SEATTLE — More than 70 years ago, at the height of World War II, one regiment of the United States Army fought not only against the Axis powers in central Europe, but also to exonerate themselves from prejudices that led their families to be incarcerated back home. Today, the 442nd Regimental Combat Team, which was composed almost entirely of Japanese Americans, is known as the most decorated unit in American history for its size and length of service—a distinction that will be celebrated in Seattle on Sept. 17 at an event that will honor their sacrifices while also celebrating two nations that have reconciled to become the closest of allies.

Members of the U.S. Army, the U.S. Air Force, and the Japan Ground Self-Defense Forces will come together at this Japan-US Military Program (JUMP) event to honor the Nisei Veterans who served in the segregated 100th Battalion/442nd Regimental Combat Team (RCT) and the Military Intelligence Service (MIS), during World War II.

The event, held by the Nisei Veterans Committee in collaboration with the Japan-America Society of the State of Washington and with support from the Consulate General of Japan in Seattle, will include American and Japanese forces, officials with Joint Base Lewis McChord, and veterans from the area who have served in Japan. The event coincides with the annual U.S.-Japan Rising Thunder training exercises at the Yakima Training Center.

Held from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the NVC Memorial Hall in Seattle (map), the event will include a tour of the venue, a luncheon featuring Japanese cuisine, special guests and speakers, taiko drumming, and a special video presentation featuring Nisei Veteran Sam Mitsui.

The event is free and open to the public, but pre-registration is required. Please join us as we honor veterans and active duty forces while celebrating the deep friendship between the United States and our allies in Japan.


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JUMP is excited to welcome distinguished guests to the program including:

• Adm. Dennis C. Blair, USN (ret.), chairman and CEO, Sasakawa USA
• Maj. Gen. Thomas James Jr., commanding general, 7th Infantry Division
• Lt. Gen. Takashi Motomatsu, Japan Ground Self-Defense Force
• Mr. Rick Takeuchi, commander, Nisei Veterans Committee
• Mr. Sam Mitsui, Nisei Veteran
• Consul General Masahiro Omura, Consulate-General of Japan in Seattle
• Mr. Tay Yoshitani, chair, Japan-America Society of the State of Washington
• Mr. Dale Watanabe, executive director, Japan-America Society of the State of Washington
• Mr. Peter Kelley, President, National Association of Japan America Societies
• LtCol. James Kendall, USMC (ret.), Director of the JUMP Program and Fellow at Sasakawa USA

About JUMP:
The Japan U.S. Military Program (JUMP) connects past and present service members, families, and government civilians who have served in Japan. Through social networks and events, JUMP builds relationships and provides opportunities for service members to engage with each other. JUMP provides a powerful foundation for sustaining the solid alliance between the U.S. and Japan.  JUMP is a collaborative venture of Sasakawa USA, the Embassy of Japan in the United States, and the National Association of Japan-America Societies.

About The Japan America Society of the State of Washington:
JASSW was founded on July 24, 1923 by leaders from Seattle’s business, academic, and diplomatic communities with the mission of promoting mutual understanding and friendship between the peoples of Japan and Washington State by providing a forum for the exchange of ideas and information. Today, the Society, one of 38 independent members of the National Association of Japan-America Societies, maintains a diverse membership of Japanese and American corporations and individuals from throughout the state and provides varied programs that build positive U.S.-Japan relations.

About the Nisei Veterans Committee:
After facing racial discrimination, prejudice, and rejection by other veterans organizations in the Pacific Northwest, a group of recently discharged second generation Japanese-American Veterans formed the Seattle Nisei Veterans Committee on March 25, 1946. At that time, one of the purposes of the group was to sustain the strong personal relationships that were forged during the war. Today, the NVC strives to preserve and honor the legacy of Japanese-American veterans and also provide educational, cultural, and social programs for the broader community. Membership is open to all honorably discharged veterans who support the patriotic goals and aspirations of the NVC.

About Sasakawa Peace Foundation USA:
Sasakawa Peace Foundation USA is an independent, American, non-profit, non-partisan institution devoted to research, analysis, and better understanding of the U.S.-Japan relationship. Through research and education programs, Sasakawa USA facilitates people-to-people exchanges and dialogue between American and Japanese policymakers, influential citizens, and the broader public.

2024 The Japan U.S. Military Program (JUMP)

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