Portfolio > After the War: A family history

Watercolor on Fabriano

A year before the war, grandma May's father, my great-grandfather Phillip, came to visit his daughter in Los Angeles. Newlyweds May and Minoru had just given birth to their first child, a baby girl, my mother Kazuko.

Great-grandpa Phillip said there was going to be a war between Japan and the US and he was returning to Japan. He asked to take baby Kazuko, his new granddaughter, with him and travel to Japan aboard one of the last passenger ships to leave the US.

May and Minoru refused.

Grandma May never saw her father again. He died from a heart attack at 47 years of age while living in Japan.