Densho Digital Archive
Densho Visual History Collection
Title: Gene Akutsu Interview
Narrator: Gene Akutsu
Interviewers: Larry Hashima (primary), Stephen Fugita (secondary)
Location: Seattle, Washington
Date: July 25, 1997
Densho ID: denshovh-agene-01-0034

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GA: This is jumping back to after we came out. About a year after we came out, first we had to report to our, what the heck you call those, the agent to tell...

LH: Parole officers?

GA: Parole officers, right. And to report to them every month to say that I'm still here in town and what I've done and so forth and about the second visit he says, "I don't think you should come around. It's not necessary for you to come around." So we stopped going which is fine as that was up at the Federal Building and takes an extra effort to go down there. But about a year later, I get a note from the parole officer and in it, it said that the President of the United States decided to give, give me a clemency, that would give us our full citizens back, citizenship back and everything pertaining to. That in prior, previously, that was, I think it was in 1948 when I got it, I think in 1947, the President set up a amnesty board to review all cases of people like us, and review everyone to see whether they should give 'em amnesty or clemency. And I guess mostly all the Niseis got it. But it took a whole year later when the board had, came to, got into existence, then a whole year later, then the note came saying that we were all given our amnesty. And the thing is, boy this government, any government, sure moves likes a turtle. All it is, you know, it's across the table and he should sign it, and you think, "Well, that's good." But it was all after we had served our time and then some when they give it to us. But it's good that they did. And the only thing I feel bad about is my mother wasn't there to see that, that the government didn't say, "You're bad." They give us our citizenship back and you could take it as, "Well, I guess we made a mistake. We apologize, we'll give your citizenship back," is about what it amounted to. So that would have been real nice if my mother was alive to see that but she wasn't.

<End Segment 34> - Copyright © 1997 Densho. All Rights Reserved.