Densho Digital Archive
Densho Visual History Collection
Title: Roy Ebihara Interview
Narrator: Roy Ebihara
Interviewer: Tom Ikeda
Location: Denver, Colorado
Date: July 5, 2008
Densho ID: denshovh-eroy-01-0013

<Begin Segment 13>

TI: So in the, in the weeks following the bombing of Pearl Harbor, so did it just get worse and worse? Did you get a sense that...

RE: Oh, yeah, you could feel the tension rising since, since Pearl Harbor, yeah. So we, we lived in mortal fear. We laid out our plans. Should they come and attack and we had nobody to help protect us, we would run in a certain direction through the cattle field which was nearby. And we would hide behind these old wooden fences that were, from my birds-eye view, was about eight to ten feet high. And we knew where we were all gonna hide and try to defend ourselves.

TI: And this was a plan that your, your parents talked to you about?

RE: Uh-huh, my older brother.

TI: And were the other Japanese families making similar kind of plans also?

RE: Uh-huh. Because we had to run in a certain direction to avoid these people.

TI: You mentioned that you had the, sort of the... I'm not sure, like enclosure where most of the Japanese families... but you lived outside of that in a house.

RE: Yeah.

TI: How close were you to that?

RE: Oh, probably about twenty-five, thirty yards.

TI: Okay, so right next to it.

RE: We were just outside this enclave, just out there.

TI: And during those weeks, did anyone ever come by and do anything in terms of...

RE: Well, pretty much the sheriff's department was informed by the immigration authorities to be responsible for these families, to protect them. But you know, they're the ones that, the plainclothesmen came and hauled out my dad's shortwave, Philco radio and chopped it up with an axe, I remember that. That happened late Sunday afternoon.

TI: I'm just guessing, you're a young boy, it must have been frightening for you.

RE: Oh, yeah. It was always... I recall crying oftentimes. It was just a frightening experience. So it was for my sisters and all of us.

TI: Yeah, I can see that. So what happened next? So you're in this sort of...

RE: Well, we sort of, the kids played together just during the day. But when sundown came along, of course, we were all huddled inside the house waiting for somebody maybe to attack us. And so we did that, it was a daily ritual.

<End Segment 13> - Copyright © 2008 Densho. All Rights Reserved.