A Memorial Day Event at The Salt Lake City Cemetery

S. F. Mori

To honor Japanese American veterans

Salt Lake City Cemetery Monument(Image is author's)

Groups of Japanese Americans in Utah with their family members and friends will hold an event at the Salt Lake City Cemetery to honor those who served in the U.S. military. Any interested persons are invited to attend to learn about the history and remember those who died.

The event will take place on Sunday, May 29, at 8:30 AM. The location is the upper section of the Salt Lake City Cemetery at 951 East 11th Avenue.

When World War II started, some young American men of Japanese heritage were anxious to show their loyalty and patriotism to the United States by enlisting in the U.S. military. They were refused because all American citizens of Japanese descent had been reclassified as non-citizens and enemy aliens. Later a segregated unit was set up in the U.S. Army where Japanese Americans were allowed to serve and were drafted. It was called the 442nd Regimental Combat Team/100th Battalion. Others served in the Military Intelligence Service of the Army.

The U.S. Flag symbolizes patriotism(Image is author's)

People of Asian descent were not allowed at that time to be buried in the main part of the Salt Lake City Cemetery. People who were Japanese or Chinese were given what was then an undesirable separate section of the cemetery where they could be buried.

The Japanese section of the Salt Lake City Cemetery has a monument which was erected to honor those Japanese American men who were killed during World War II in the service of their country. The names of those who died are etched on the monument.

Members of the Mount Olympus Chapter of the Japanese American Citizens League (JACL) met to clean up that section of the Salt Lake City Cemetery.

Remembering those who served and honoring their memory is important at this Memorial Day and always.

[Reference: Information on this period of American history may be found in the book, The Japanese American Story as Told Through a Collection of Speeches and Articles, www:thejapaneseamerianstory.com]

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I am a retired President/CEO of civil rights organizations. I have been a Mayor and California State Assemblyman as well as a College Instructor of Economics. I have also been an entrepreneur and international business consultant. I will be sharing articles mostly about life, politics, racism, travel, health, and relationships.

Salt Lake City, UT

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