Densho Digital Repository
Densho Visual History Collection
Title: Hatsuko Mary Higuchi Interview
Narrator: Hatsuko Mary Higuchi
Interviewer: Virginia Yamada
Location: Los Angeles, California
Date: February 4, 2019
Densho ID: ddr-densho-1000-456-14

<Begin Segment 14>

VY: Is there anything that you'd like to talk about that we haven't touched upon yet?

HH: No, but my mantra has always been, in school, do your best. Do your best. In high school and college, when I thought I was going to be kicked out, do your best, do your best. I just kept doing my best, and somehow I was able to graduate and do my best, even in teaching and just maintain a good group of students who remember me and would write, let me know that they still think very highly of what happened and their education and what was offered.

VY: It sounds like you have done your best.

HH: I hope so. [Laughs] I try, even with my kids, I try, but it's not easy, but they seem to be very appreciative. They call all the time and they invite me out to dinner, and they fix special food, love experimenting with food and say, "Come on over, join us." And a grandson who I dearly, dearly love.

VY: How many children and grandchildren do you have?

HH: I have only one grandchild, and my two kids, and they truly mean so much to me. They were both adopted, and my grandson was adopted.

VY: Where were they adopted from?

HH: My children from Japan, my grandson here, in the United States. But truly, they are my kids, they really, really have been a big part of my life.

VY: I can tell.

HH: And I want to continue this. This is why it's important for me to take them to Manzanar and go to a pilgrimage and know a little more about it rather than just reading a paragraph or two in the textbook in high school. I don't think there was even a paragraph devoted to it when they were going to high school. And it wasn't really talked about, so I wanted them to go there and see, and that's why I did those paintings, it's for them.

VY: Okay, well, I think we will take a break and then we'll talk about the paintings. But before we do that, I want to thank you so much for joining us today and sharing your story.

HH: You're welcome. It's good to do this, because otherwise, if you just keep it hidden, it's gone forever.

VY: Absolutely.

HH: And this way, it refreshes my memory. And I'm sure I'll go home and say, "Oh no, I forgot to say this or that, tell them about this." But you can't expect very much out of me nowadays. My mind is going quickly. So thank you.

VY: Thank you so much, Mary.

HH: You're welcome.

<End Segment 14> - Copyright © 2019 Densho. All Rights Reserved.