FFNV Meets Aboard the USS Hornet
As usual, the Alameda pier where the USS Hornet WW II aircraft carrier is anchored was cloudy and even chilly on Aug. 2.
However, the upbeat sound of the San Francisco All City Jazz Band warmly greeted smaller but enthusiastic crowd at an annual gathering of Friends and Family of Nisei Veterans (FFNV) aboard the Hornet. Great camaraderie again bonded veterans, spouses, family members and friends.
Special guests were Randall Ramian, CEO of the Hornet Museum who welcomed the attendees, and Odette Le Pendu, recipient of the prestigious French Legion of Honor Medal for her distinguished service as French resistance fighter during World War II.
Lawson Sakai, President of FFNV and a 442nd Regimental Combat Team (442nd RCT) veteran, eloquently delivered the keynote address while reflecting his experiences during the rescue of the “Lost Battalion” in late October 1944. His inspirational presentation captivated the audience.
Entertainment was provided by the SF All City Jazz Band composed of talented students in middle and high schools and led by their music teacher, Ken Crowell. The band serenaded the audience with nostalgic selections of popular hits during last several decades. At the conclusion of this event, the band played the US military branch medley honoring all veterans who served in all wars.
After the formal program, attendees enjoyed touring the Hornet and visiting the Nisei Veterans’ Exhibit featuring Japanese-American history and legendary accomplishments of the 442nd RCT and the Military Intelligence Service.
Due to dwindling number of able Nisei veterans and supporters, this meeting was the last FFNV gathering aboard the Hornet. FFNV is grateful to all supporters since the first meeting in 2006.
The Nisei Veterans’ Exhibit will continue to receive visitors.
For more information, please contact Brian Shiroyama at bshiroyama@ gmail.com or (408) 896-1021.