Densho Digital Archive
Frank Abe Collection
Title: Jim Akutsu Interview
Narrator: Jim Akutsu
Interviewers: Frank Abe (primary); Frank Chin (secondary)
Location: Seattle, Washington
Date: August 28, 1993
Densho ID: denshovh-ajim-02-0015

<Begin Segment 15>

Male voice: What did you think about on the boat trip back from McNeil Island back to the mainland?

JA: Well, the thing was, going was more. You know, the guys were talking, and as soon as we got on that boat, everybody just got quiet. And then, the biggest thing is when we heard that gate slam -- [makes sound effect] -- as we went inside. That kind of, you know, you get that kind of a cold feeling. But coming back was... didn't have much, but going in, yes.

Male voice: What did you think about what it would be like on the outside again, after three years?

JA: No, we knew what was going on. We weren't there that long, but coming back out of there, it was just like going back home. But I was expecting a lot of things that could happen within my own community, that being Japan, Japanese American. And I was pretty well-prepared for that.

FC: Prepared for...

JA: Anything. Physical or otherwise.

FC: But you weren't prepared for a great reception, a party, parade, welcome home...

JA: Oh, no, no, no. No. No, nothing like that.

Male voice: Who met you on this side of the water?

JA: We just took a bus and came home, and got off at Second and Main Street.

FC: You were alone, then. Nobody met you.

JA: Well, we just, I just... no, I don't think so, yeah. And I just walked home. And that's where your, John Okada's book starts.

<End Segment 15> - Copyright © 1993, 2005 Frank Abe and Densho. All Rights Reserved.