Densho Digital Archive
Japanese American Museum of San Jose Collection
Title: Lily C. Hioki Interview
Narrator: Lily C. Hioki
Interviewers: Tom Ikeda, Steve Fugita
Location: San Jose, California
Date: December 1, 2010
Densho ID: denshovh-hlily-01

<Begin Segment 1>

TI: And so the way I start this is just explaining where we are and the date, so today is Wednesday, December 1, 2010, and we're in San Jose at the Japanese American Museum of San Jose, and on camera is Dana Hoshide and helping interview is Steve Fugita, and my name is Tom Ikeda. And I'm here with Lily, so Lily, let me just start by asking, what was the name given to you at birth?

LH: My birth certificate says Lily -- no, no. Excuse me, Chieko Takimoto.

TI: And do you know, Chieko, where that came from? Was there a reason why?

LH: I asked my mother one time what it meant because I found out Japanese names have a meaning, and according to what she said, chie, chie means strength and ko means child. Is that right?

TI: So kind of about strength. She named you in terms of strength.

LH: Chieko.

TI: Did she ever tell you why she named you that?

LH: No. I wish, I'm like everybody else, we, I wish we asked our parents more questions, and it's too late now, but I realized too late.

TI: So tell me where and when you were born.

LH: I was born here in San Jose, but I think it was at a midwife's place. I know there was one here on Fifth Street on this side of the street, and I think there was one by the Methodist church. I don't know if they moved, but, and I don't know which one I was born in, through a midwife, which was common in those days. And then there was a hospital on the, in the JACL building, but I'm pretty sure I wasn't born there. I remember running around and upstairs it was cold, but that's not where I was born.

TI: And what was the date you were born?

LH: July 3, 1925.

TI: So that makes you eighty-five years, years old.

LH: Eighty-five.

TI: I want to go back and ask, so "Chieko" was your given name --

LH: My given name.

TI: Where did "Lily" come from?

LH: A family friend, it was a lady and I think she lived in San Francisco, was visiting us on the farm in Burbank -- I lived in Burbank, which was a suburb of San Jose -- she named my brother and I. I was named Lily and he was named Carlo, which he didn't like at all either. [Laughs]

TI: And you're not particularly fond of the name Lily?

LH: At that time no, because all our schoolmates were Mary and Rosie and Margaret, Jane, and here I was named after a flower. [Laughs]

TI: And do you know why this woman was the one who named you and your brother?

LH: Oh, because I was going to start school. Burbank Grammar School, which is still there. The original building is not there; I think they rebuilt it. And that was the reason, because they, in my father's generation they wanted to integrate into the American system, so that was the reason they gave me the American name, 'cause I didn't go by my Japanese name, which is Chieko.

TI: And I'm curious, after that point, so you have Lily, that was used at school, and Chieko, so were, like the family members still called you Chieko?

LH: Yes, and all the family friends called me Chieko as long as they lived. I don't remember any of 'em calling me anything else.

TI: Good.

<End Segment 1> - Copyright © 2010 Densho. All Rights Reserved.

<Begin Segment 2>

TI: Okay, so now I want to ask about your father, so why don't you first tell me his name and where he was from.

LH: My father's first name was Kajiro, and that's the only name I've known him by, Kajiro Takimoto. And he was from Ozu, Japan in Kumamoto-ken and he was the second son, so he immigrated here in his teen years, probably about sixteen or seventeen, I think, and he always lived in Los Angeles and he was not from a farm family. His parents had a, what he told me was they had a soda water shop, and they still do because when we went to visit once maybe twenty, twenty-five years ago they still did sell soda water.

TI: And this is in Japan?

LH: In Japan, in Ozu. And they had a store.

TI: And when, when they sell soda water in Japan, is it in bottles or...

LH: It was in a bottle, and that was strange 'cause you didn't think they had soda water in Japan, but it was probably some kind of a sweet drink. That's what I'm thinking. Anyway, and I've always wanted to go back there, but I want to go back one more time to visit them because his nieces are in their nineties and they're kinda waiting for me to come too, so hopefully my health will hold up and I can go maybe next year. I don't know.

TI: Do you have a sense about the, the soda water business, was that a pretty good business to have?

LH: You know, I don't know because I didn't ask him. He had an older brother and the older brother took care of the family and the business, so, and like I said, being the second son, he came over here to better his life, I'm sure. And I don't ever remember him saying he had a sister. I think it was two brothers, and his older brother, their nieces, his nieces were our age. That's why I say she's in, ninety-one now, and so his older brother got married probably in the twenties or something. Normally, my father didn't get married 'til thirty-five and he probably never would have got married, I don't think, 'cause he never mentioned women until, Mr. Takeda here in San Jose was a baishakunin for a lot of people, Kumamoto people, and he was a good friend with my father, so he knew him probably in Japan and he, he kinda matched my mother and father together and they married. So my father came here.

TI: So your mother was in San Jose.

LH: In San Jose.

TI: And at that time your father was in Los Angeles.

LH: Los Angeles.

TI: But, so before we go to your mother, in Los Angeles, what, what did your father do in Los Angeles?

LH: Well, he used to mention a fish market so I guess he worked in a fish market, but I think he also did domestic work, sounded like he did. But that's all I know.

TI: And how would you describe him, like personality-wise? What kind of man was he?

LH: He was a gentle person. He never yelled. I know that when he married my mother and he had to work on the farm it was very hard for him 'cause he's never done farm work. And then the Depression started, 'cause I was born in 1925 and the Depression was about '28, '29, and my grandparents came here, I don't know when, but I know my, my uncle was born here in Napa, and so my grandparents probably lived in Napa for a while and then they had two sons. My uncle and another son that passed away, and I know that my mother has gone over there trying to find the cemetery, but she never could find it because Napa has changed a lot throughout the years.

TI: So this is your grandparents on your mother's...

LH: My mother's side.

TI: Okay.

<End Segment 2> - Copyright © 2010 Densho. All Rights Reserved.

<Begin Segment 3>

TI: Let's go to your mother, then. So your, your father was in L.A., he came up to marry your mother, but before we talk about their marriage, tell me a little bit about your mother's family.

LH: Alright. My mother's maiden name was Miura and her father's name was Tokujo and her mother's name was Kame, K-A-M-E, Kame. And they came here, leaving my mother in Japan with her grandmother, and so my mother was quite young, I think, when they left her, and they came, immigrated here and then my uncle and his brother were born here. And eventually they ended up in San Jose on Burbank, where Lincoln High School is now, and they farmed, I don't know, it was quite a bit of acres, I would say about maybe ten acres. And so it covered on Wabash to the edge of Burbank, anyway, to the back where Lincoln High School, that was all farm and surrounded by houses and school on one side, on the west side, and then on the south side was the peach orchard, next to the grammar school was the peach orchard that fronted on Bascom. And there was a cannery there, the Di Fiore Cannery, and that peach orchard was part of that cannery. And so further down, going towards Race Street, Race Street? Not Race Street, it's another one. Well anyway, going towards San Jose would be another, more orchard, was prune orchard, and then next to that it was Park Avenue. On the corner of Naglee and Park they built Hoover Junior High School. I remember when they built that. And then where the rose garden is off of Naglee used to be a peach orchard, and they tore down the peach orchard and I remember my parents going over there, walking over there and getting all the branches for ofuro. In those days most Japanese in the farm had ofuro, not American bathtub, so they used the wood to burn, to heat the water up.

TI: Lily, your memory is amazing. You can remember all these places and what was there before. Going back to those ten acres your family had, or your mother's family, so it was ten acres, did you say grapes that they grew?

LH: No, no. They had, they had loganberries. I remember a patch of loganberries, and that was the only berry we had, but all around, surrounding it we had bell pepper, they had radish, they had cucumbers, squash, bell peppers, probably beans, different kinds of vegetables because they'd rotate, but it was, it was to me at the time, I was little, but driving by there, it, it covered a little bit of ground, but the two of them, and then we had a horse. There was a barn and we had the horse, I think it's name was Molly, and I remember him plowing. In those days you have one horse and one plow, so it takes a while to... and I remember the ground like this. Anyway, and looking back they really had to work hard. It was, I'm sure, 'cause we were little, but my job was to wash rice, when I got old enough. That was my job. My brother's job was to heat up the ofuro water. And that's the only work I remember doing when I was little.

TI: So let's, let's talk now a little bit about your mother and father coming together. You said it was arranged, baishakunin?

LH: Yes, Mr. Kumataro Takeda. Everybody knows him in town, did know him, our generation.

TI: And you mentioned your father was about thirty-five, and so your mother was, was quite a bit younger than your father?

LH: They were ten years apart. She was twenty-five. And...

TI: Explain, I think when we last left your mother she was still in Japan.

LH: She was.

TI: So how did she get to the United States?

LH: Well, according to people in Japan, they told me that she was getting to be a teenager and they felt that she should be near her parents because I guess when you get to be teenager, I don't know if they were having problems, I don't think so, but they felt that she should go be with her parents, so they sent her to here to be with her parents. And then my grandparents must've been doing fairly well because they sent her to a sewing school, I think in San Francisco because we have a picture of her graduation. She had on a sort of a beige crepe dress and it had beads on it, and at that time her hair was short and it looked like she had a perm, but when I grew up with her she always had her hair long and in a bun. That's how I remember her when I was little. And you know when they work they wore that white dish towel around their head and then they put the hat on? You don't remember what we all do, 'cause all the mother's did the same thing. They kept their face covered because they didn't want to get dark, I guess, and they wore the teori on their hand. Have you ever seen those?

TI: I've seen pictures of them.

LH: Right. It goes, covers here and then they tie it and elastic here [points to elbow] to keep it up. But that's the way most of the mothers were when they worked on the farm. And like I said, we were very poor because the Depression, and I remember my father going to Burbank, there was a Safeway there and he used to go trade vegetables for bacon, scrap bacon and that's what we, my mother used to chop it up little and make okazu with the vegetables we had, and it's, to this day it's an inexpensive meal, but it's very healthy. That and round steak was, my father bought ten cents a pound or whatever. Anyway, you get a big round steak and you don't see those things very much anymore.

TI: That's interesting, it's kind of a barter system where he would take his produce, go to Safeway and trade for things like scrap bacon.

LH: Yes. Right, and in Japantown, the Dobashi market was there and I remember the book, the sales book and I think my father used to buy on credit, and I don't think he was the only one. The Dobashi's were very good at that. But I do remember that when we came back my father did go over there to pay them back.

TI: This is after the war?

LH: After the war, and I think they released them from that. Somehow that stuck in my mind how generous they were, the Dobashi's, but I'm pretty sure that that's what happened because it just stuck in my mind.

TI: Going back to your mother's family, with their, sort of, farming, who were their customers? Who did they sell the produce to?

LH: You know, I don't know. I must've been about four because I barely remembered them going back to Japan. The funny thing is the only thing I could remember about is a dish, one dish that was about this big and it was like this. I don't know why that stuck in my mind, but I try to think, what do I remember about them? But I don't. It's sad.

TI: Okay, so let's go back to your mother. You talked about your father and how he was sort of like a gentle man and never raised his voice. What was your mother like?

LH: My mother's the one that raised us, and I turned out to be just like that 'cause my husband was just like my father. [Laughs] Isn't that funny? So I was the one that was screaming and yelling and trying to keep the children in order and make them behave and work hard. I think about it all the time and I thought if I had to do it over again, would I do the same thing? I don't know. But they, they're all hard workers because they know how to work. I was not easy on them at all.

TI: But in the same way, then, your mother wasn't easy on you? I mean, she, she was... had you work really hard?

LH: Well, she never drove me like I drove my children, because they did all the work, and like I said, my only job I remember was washing, washing the rice, and when we got old enough my brother and I -- by this time we moved to, on Fruitdale Avenue in San Jose near the county hospital and we took over the ranch of another family that went back to Japan. They made their money and they went back with their family, and so we took over that ranch until the cherry trees... what happened was a lot of times the landlord would plant an orchard and while the trees are small they planted berries in between, and so in this case it was raspberries, so that's what my brother and I picked. And I don't know how old we were. We must've been ten, twelve, and this was after we moved back from Alviso. We moved over to Fruitdale Avenue and picked berries. That's all I remember doing is berries and washing rice, until the war started.

<End Segment 3> - Copyright © 2010 Densho. All Rights Reserved.

<Begin Segment 4>

TI: Okay, so let's, let's back up a little bit and, because you moved around quite a bit, to different places. Where was the first place you can remember living?

LH: Burbank. Well no, sorry, I take that back. When my father and mother got married they did domestic work in Los Gatos, way up on Overlook Road, way up in the hills, 'cause I've gone to visit it. It's a dead end road up -- well, it was, 'cause you'd go around a tree to come back -- and they worked for somebody that ran the bank in Los Gatos and my father, like I said, they did domestic work. I think my mother did, too, but for some reason we lived there until my grandparents decided to go back.

TI: And so around when you were four is when you...

LH: Probably about four, we moved to Burbank, to, on the farm.

TI: Okay, so you, your parents took over the farm.

LH: Farm. And my children would not believe what we lived in. I mean, the house had on one side the ofuro, and then I remember the cement hearth, you could call it, and then where you boil water with the metal grate and then, I think it was cement, then you put the wash pot here and heat the water up. And then the kitchen was dark and I think we had a two burner kerosene stove and a table over here with, I think, two benches, and then there was a storeroom over there and on this side was the living room and on that end was the bedroom, which was one room and there was a army cot, army cot, my brother and myself, and then a double bed. But the floor was about an inch think, but the holes between the boards were about like this, so my brother and I would go down there and see if anybody dropped any money down there. [Laughs] You know, when you're kids we do some funny things. And I remember when it rained we put the, they put the tin cans here and there. It was a hard life, but I've seen people live in worse places. You know, we were Japanese, the Japanese family... it's unbelievable, but survival.

TI: But growing up, did you have a sense that maybe you were, this was a hard place to live or that you were poor? Was that something --

LH: No. We don't know 'cause that's the only way we knew. We accepted, everything we did we accepted. We didn't, I don't ever remember anybody complaining. That was the beauty of the Japanese people. They were not complainers. It was survival. Anyway, and then we had Filipino workers. I think there was another building next and all I remember is it was really dark, so there must not have been too many windows, and then there was a big barn and the horse, but in the barn there was hay, there was a loft, and then they had these berry crates. In those days the berries were in crates that were about, oh, five or six feet long, maybe five feet long, and then the drawers were like this and the berries fit in the drawers and the drawers slid into these crates, and when the crate was full that was, they picked up the crate and brought it to the produce market. But anyway, those old crates were stacked up and then the workers slept on there with their blankets and their pillows and things. I think I remember that. And then on this side was all the bales of hay. And we had two apple trees, and for some reason my father had a swing there and my brother and I really had a good time on that swing, and eating green apples with salt on it. Those are the things I remember about Burbank. And one year, it was in the early '30s, it snowed. Must've been about two or three inches, that was really exciting 'cause I don't remember snow that much since. And we had a water tank and that year it froze, so you see these icicles hanging, so we grabbed that, break it off and suck on that icicle. When we, when we're children we do things that, spontaneously; what's there, we do and what we think we want to do with it. Anyway, those are good days. It was cold and everything, but I don't remember shivering like I do now in cold.

TI: Lily, those are, those are really great stories

<End Segment 4> - Copyright © 2010 Densho. All Rights Reserved.

<Begin Segment 5>

TI: Earlier you mentioned how your father was not really a farmer, didn't have that experience, and you mentioned that working that farm was a hard work.

LH: It was.

TI: How, how did he do as a farmer?

LH: Well, I guess he did alright, but you know what, he turned to drink. That was the one thing that my father and I never got along with because, and I remember it was claret wine and he'd buy it by the jug. And one time I was with him, coming back from somewhere, he hit the telephone pole. It just, thump. Nobody got hurt. I don't think there was too much damage, but after that, he knew I didn't like it, but I think he was just... I don't know, it's just his way of just forgetting, I guess. But looking back, I thought it was a challenge for him and it was his way out. And I know my mother used to tell him not to drink, but he did, and he drank even during the war and then when we were in Utah he had bleeding ulcers and I remember we had to rush him to the hospital and... I thought it was odd then, because I don't remember there being a hospital or, either that or Brigham City 'cause there wasn't a hospital in Tremonton or Garland. But anyway, he was there for about a week or so and then he quit drinking for a while, but I think after the war he used to have beer in the house, but he never indulged in it like he did before.

TI: Going back to when you were, when he started drinking when he was younger, when did he drink? Did he drink with others? Did he drink by himself? Was there were certain times when he would drink?

LH: He must've drank at home because he had the wine, but New Year's, New Year's was a big thing in those days. They celebrated for about a week and my mother cooked for about a week before and all during the week, and we lived in, I don't remember other New Year's, but I do remember in Burbank because from Wabash Road to our house is a little ways because you have to pass the school and then come to the house. It's all mud, and I remember people's cars getting stuck and my father bringing pieces of wood to get traction to get them out of the mud, but when they came, they're all Kumamoto people, people that knew each, are good friends, they all drank. I think they were known for drinking, the Kumamoto-ken people, and they didn't get violent, but they got happy and I remember they'd do the ondo around the table and my brother and I'd be just watching 'cause it's fascinating. It's different. My mother's in the back cooking and, but I do remember the dancing. You don't see them doing that anywhere else but on a New Year thing 'cause I don't even remember seeing them do that, the dancing even at the Kumamoto parties, and I still go to them every year because I was the one that brought my parents and my in-laws. My husband was the oldest and I was the oldest girl. My brother didn't do any of that, so I was the one that took them all over. That's why I miss them all, all these old Isseis.

TI: Interesting. Good story.

<End Segment 5> - Copyright © 2010 Densho. All Rights Reserved.

<Begin Segment 6>

TI: So you, you mentioned leaving Burbank. About how old were you when you left Burbank?

LH: Let's see, I was in the first, second, I think I was in the fourth grade, and...

TI: And then where did you go after that?

LH: We moved to Alviso. Well, it's San Jose, but we went to Alviso School, so --

TI: And first tell me, why did you move from Burbank to Alviso?

LH: I think they were gonna build a school, Lincoln High School, and so that was why we moved. On, they built Lincoln High, but they built a bicycle track there, too, where our driveway was, on Wabash. They called it a velodrome, I think, and for a while that was there, but then it didn't last long. And also in Burbank there was M.R. Trace School was there, too. That was, that school is old. It was there before Hoover, anyway. But then in Alviso it was about two miles we had to walk every day and cross 237, which was a country road then, and then the thing about that time, there were Japanese on this side of the street and the other side. There was a lot of Japanese from where we lived all the way into the town of Alviso. It's amazing, they're not there anymore, but some of 'em owned pear ranches, like the Takedas and the Ezakis and the Mizotas, Sakamotos, the Uemuras, and then on the corner where 237 and First Street met there was a camp of Japanese and they're all gone now. There's a few that's my age that, the children left, but very few.

TI: And in places like Alviso at this point, was the land pretty much all leased or did some of them start owning land?

LH: I know the Takedas owned theirs and they, after the war they had the nursery on, off Alum Rock Avenue. The Mizotas, I don't, they may have, Mizotas and Ezakis, they might, I think they may have, because they went back there after the war.

TI: And how about your family, in Alviso?

LH: No, because, like I said, we were poor and we had that old Model T Ford that we had in Burbank, didn't even have, didn't even have a top. And the thing, you know, the funny thing was it used to get very foggy and Japantown was a hub for all the Japanese, and there's always the church and they always had the movies. Well, before the movies there were plays because there were Kibei people here, so they used to wear their Japanese outfit and they'd have a play. And then the movies came and then the plays disappeared, and so when they had the movies they had these samurai movies, and, oh, that Okita Hall was just jam packed, and I remember the projection room was up there [points up], but I used to climb up there and, with the young people, and watch from up there, or sometimes it's so full that we watched from back of the stage 'cause you can see from the back of the screen, too. You're just looking at it in reverse. But that was a popular place, and like I said, Japantown was the hub. On the weekends everybody came to shop and, you know, with friends and to see friends and meet with friends.

TI: How about things like, for Japanese school? Did you go to Japanese language school?

LH: Yes, and I, the first time I went was in Alviso and it was, the Japanese school was right across the street from the grammar school, so after grammar school we'd go to Japanese school. And the teacher, Mrs. Sato was the teacher and she taught for I don't know how long, but, 'cause we moved, but I still remember those desks, about five feet and then they had a drawer and a bench seat and it held two people, but do you know what? When I went to Japan, and I don't know what town, they had those same desks and it reminded me of that Alviso school. But, and that's where they had the Sunday school classes, too, on Sundays, so we'd walk over there and the, the minister, the, we used to call him Bonsan, Buddhist minister, would come and we'd have to listen to that -- we didn't understand, well, I didn't understand a thing. I don't think most of us understood a thing he said, and that's why I became a Christian, because I wanted my children to know what was being said, and my mother agreed that it was okay as long as they went to church, so...

TI: And so when did you become a Christian? Was this later on?

LH: After I had my first child. She became three, and they all started at three.

TI: I see, okay.

<End Segment 6> - Copyright © 2010 Densho. All Rights Reserved.

<Begin Segment 7>

TI: Alviso, going back to your, like, grammar school back then, what percentage were Japanese? I'm just trying to get a sense of the community, what that was like.

LH: You know, I got a hunch most of us were Japanese. (Narr. note: There had to have been a lot of Caucasians and we Japanese were a minority group but for a small school, it was a lot. The people were of mixed European descent.)

TI: So in your grammar school, you'd look around your class and most were Japanese?

LH: They were. They were, and there was a first, second and part of third grade was in the one building over here, was a separate building. Then they had a cement courtyard with a flag where we all stood and pledged our allegiance, and then the main building and that had fourth, fifth, up to the eighth grade. I think they might've been combined because I think there were four teachers, the principal, Mrs. Hughes, Miss Owens... yeah, I think there were four altogether. That includes the principal. Anyway, and most of us are Japanese because on the other side of 237 was the Ikedas and the Nitaharas and the Hirais, and they owned that one corner, the Ikedas did, and then they had land on the other side, too. And they used to have a fruit stand there, on that, it was a curve and they had a fruit stand there and then they had one maybe two or three blocks up the road on the other side, and then the Hirais had one just beyond that, but there's a ditch on... in those days, and maybe, no, they don't anymore, but they used to have a ditch on both sides of First Street going into Alviso. And I could tell you a story about that ditch, too, but anyway, in the summer, because my mother used to pick blackberries for the Ikedas, they hired me to work in the summer to sell berries, so I got to sell on the other, other stand 'cause the sun was on this side. And the people that came to buy those berries were from San Francisco. They used to come for an outing just to buy berries, strawberries or, well in those days it was blackberries, and, and then later on when the apples came I remember selling. They had apples there, too. But that was really an experience 'cause I learned how to manage money a little bit and meet all these different people. It was amazing.

TI: And so, going back to school, so mostly Japanese, if they weren't Japanese what other, like, nationalities?

LH: Well, the Silvas, Silvas were Portuguese, Zankers might've been German, and oh gosh, who... I used to remember. Can't. Nicholsons... I think it was mixed.

TI: Interesting, but it was mostly, interesting, that community was mostly Japanese back then.

LH: Yeah. There was a lot of Japanese.

TI: And besides the Japanese language school, were there Japanese community events in Alviso during the year, like picnics or anything like that, that you can remember?

LH: Not in Alviso. I don't remember anything like that.

TI: So for those things you would come into Japantown?

LH: Japantown, uh-huh.

SF: In terms of the kids in the, your school, the Portuguese and the Japanese and the Germans, how did they get along, and did you go to, like, to their birthday parties? Or was it mostly Japanese stuck together?

LH: There was no such thing as a birthday party. I don't, I don't remember anything like a birthday, but I remember Bill Zanker 'cause we were in the same class, but the Silvas, and I can't remember his name, but they lived where Sutter's Corner was, and it's not there anymore, but that was kind of a bar like thing, but it was really popular. And the Zankers lived going towards Milpitas more and they had a ranch. Where the Japanese lived in a community, like on 237 and First Street, I don't know who the owners were, but there was maybe five or six Japanese families there and they, the fathers worked in the orchards and the mothers, well I don't know what their mothers did, but my mother worked, like, for the Ikedas in the berries and my father worked in the orchards, different orchards around where we lived in Alviso, wherever they needed people to pick and prune. They were good at pruning the trees. And we went to school, so I don't remember the parents. But anyway, there were a lot of Japanese and they did work in these orchards. They lived, because they had housing for them, and some of 'em raised berries, I think on, on this side of 237 and First Street there was the Uemuras and the Sakamotos and it seemed like they had something else other than fruit but I can't remember.

TI: Interesting.

<End Segment 7> - Copyright © 2010 Densho. All Rights Reserved.

<Begin Segment 8>

TI: Okay, so you said you were there just for a few years and then went to Fruitdale (Avenue) after that?

LH: Right. Well, we went from, from First Street we moved to Alviso for a while because, I don't know why we had to move, but we did. But they had that cannery in town of Alviso. I think it was owned by Chinese, and for some reason it was not a cannery anymore, but they had the cold storage place yet, so I know that they stored pears there in cold storage, but they had these cabins where the workers used to stay. In those days most canneries had cabins for workers, 'cause even in San Jose the Del Monte had the cabins where some workers stayed, so they rented my father, they let my father rent that one cabin for us for not too long. We were there not very long, but, and I guess he still worked in the orchard and my mother probably still worked for Ikedas, but because we just went to school, but I remember walking around the canals and the water... but that's all I remember.

TI: Okay.

LH: And that cannery I don't think is there anymore. But the town hasn't changed that much. The school is, I don't think it's there anymore, but the Palm Tree is and some of the stores are old, but they're there, and some of the restaurants. And there used to be, I think I told you, there was a oyster bed place there and I remember that huge mountain of oyster shells, so they must've been harvesting oysters before there, because that was a port city then and they had the yacht club. And in that time it was starting to deteriorate. The yacht club was not popular, and then on that same street going around following the levy there was a dance hall and we remember the Filipino men used to go there to, they, to dance because they were all single people. And so the oyster bed was there, which has disappeared, and then I don't think the dance hall is there anymore. Val's is still there.

TI: You also mentioned like a race track?

LH: Oh, that's right. Past the Ikeda's ranch there was a race track and they raced those greyhound dogs, and that was at the end of that era because that disappeared, too. I think while we were there they tore it down, but it was, there was a greyhound racetrack.

SF: Did the Japanese like to go bet on the dogs? Or, or did they...

LH: I don't know, because that's the first time I knew what a greyhound racetrack, I mean a greyhound dog looked like. I never even heard of a greyhound dog before, but it, it disappeared while we were there. Just like the yacht club.

TI: I'm wondering, with all the, the laborers and things like that, were there, like, places like gambling places in Alviso, in that area?

LH: There probably was. Maybe that dance hall might've been a gambling place. I don't know. But I know people gambled because, maybe in Chinatown, because I remember the Filipinos used to have these little things with the green brush strokes on the numbers (about 5"x6" sheets of paper with numbers). Is that keno? I... 'cause I don't gamble, but I think there's a thing called keno that you could... but I do remember those little pieces of paper with the green brush strokes, so there was gambling somewhere. Chinatown, maybe, in San Jose. It might've been. I don't know.

TI: Okay, so after Alviso where did you go? After the...

LH: We went to -- the other thing I wanted to tell you about Alviso, we had ditches on both sides and I remember, because I was, what would you call it? Not bullied, but I was not liked. I didn't, I don't know, people just didn't like me for some reason, so I used to walk home the long way through the orchard and then sometimes I'd walk in the ditches. And you know what I found in the ditches? Asparagus growing. Wild asparagus. So I used to pick those and bring it home. And then when I'd come home the other way, well, there was these small ditches and they had asparagus growing there, so I did discover that asparagus, the water brings the seed along or whatever, but I do remember that. And then that was another part of my life, was just, you know... I was always a happy person, but for some reason the girls didn't really get along with me and I was just a passive person, I thought. So my friend was, there was one lady that had polio, one girl, and I used to play jacks with her, and she was my friend. And do you know what? After -- they moved to Stockton -- and after all these years she comes to our church now, and when she came I remembered her, but she didn't remember me and she, since then there were improvements made for people with polio. In those days she had those leather things here with the metal to hold her legs so she could walk. Well now she walks with a mobile wheelchair, but before she got that she was walking with the, a walker, but she did well. She married and had a good life. She has a daughter and they both come to our church. But it was so amazing to see her after all these years 'cause I never forgot her for being my friend.

TI: Good. Anything else about Alviso before we move on?

LH: No, but I got to know all the people.

TI: Okay.

<End Segment 8> - Copyright © 2010 Densho. All Rights Reserved.

<Begin Segment 9>

TI: So after Alviso, where did you go?

LH: We went to Fruitdale Avenue, Fruitdale Avenue just off of Santa Clara County Hospital, and like I said, the people that lived there were good friends of ours and they went back to Japan. They had two daughters and a son, and they went back to Japan and we moved into the house, and the owners lived right next door. And so they had raspberries. It was not very much; it was a small acreage, but it was enough to keep my mother and father busy. And then I went to Campbell grammar school and graduated, and then I started Campbell High School, which is brand new 'cause they tore it down while we were going to the grammar school. They tore down the old Campbell High School and they rebuilt at kitty corner, away from there. Anyway, so we lived there two, three, four years? I can't remember. But anyway -- twelve, thirteen, fourteen, maybe three years -- and behind the berry ranch was this big open pit, and I don't know if people knew it, but there was a brick yard back there and Bill Dare was the superintendent. His daughter and I were the same age, so we became very good friends. And so I used to play in that pit a lot, and then through the brick yard, we used to go through all, all through where the kilns are and see how the, they fed the coal and how the brick was fired and how they made the clay to make the brick. And you know, the clay was dug out from the pit, and then even with making brick you have seconds. They were called clinkers, 'cause they didn't come out rectangular. They had lumps in it or something, so those were called clinkers and they were set aside, but it was, it was interesting because it's like this and on the top, you could walk around back there, they had these lids and that's where they'd feed the coal into this round cavern. And the bricks are loaded by pallets, section by section, and then they fire it. As they are cured over here they get cold and they take 'em out, and the new ones are put, so it goes around in a circle 'cause it covers a lot of territory where they fire the bricks. And I remember Mr. Nagata used to live there, too, and he used to make his pot of spaghetti sauce and put it in that round thing and it'd cook all day. You know where the fire is not as intense? In those days people used to cook things for hours and that's why there was the flavor, but I remember Mr. Nagata doing that.

TI: Well, this brick yard, how big a operation, like how many workers were, were there?

LH: I don't know, because they had to, the bricks all came in a, they come out on a form and they're, and I remember the belt where the dirt, there's a big thing digging the dirt and then it goes up a conveyor belt. And I remember walking all across and, and it's mixed.

TI: And how many Japanese worked at the brick yard? Very...

LH: None. Nobody.

TI: No one?

LH: Mr. Nagata just lived there in the house back there.

TI: And took advantage of all the heating, or the, the oven there.

LH: Yeah. And Mr. Dare was of German extraction and he was very good to us, he and... yeah, all, I guess I remember them all my life. They're both gone. And the daughter got polio and she passed away from polio. But that was another experience, going through, playing in the brick yard. My brother had a friend that had a pony, so they used to ride up and down, all the way down there. Because we didn't harm anybody or get in anybody's way, so it was a good place to play, for kids. It was just myself, my brother and Mr. Nagata's son, and the one that owned the horse. Other people didn't go down there. It was just us. And the other thing was in the spring after the rain, they used to have mushrooms. You know the field mushrooms? I remember gathering field mushrooms. The reason we, I knew what mushrooms were was because Japanese lived in clusters. There was a whole bunch of Japanese that lived on Trimble Road, and the Kanemotos that we went to Utah with, they lived on Trimble Road and behind their house was this big pasture and every winter, after the rain we'd go out, gather mushrooms, so I knew what good mushrooms were versus bad ones. And the other kind of mushrooms that, since we're discussing mushrooms, they called it yanagi naba, and yanagi means willow and so where there's an old willow tree or a dead willow tree stump you'll find these yanagi naba. I think they're what you call the oyster mushrooms, but they used to grow huge. Do you know what they are? I haven't seen 'em since, but, and they're very meaty, very good. The flavor is so good. And the only other place I've seen that was in Utah. Where we lived there was a dead poplar tree and it used to grow out of there, so I remember my father watering it so it'll produce as long as it could. But I haven't seen that. Sometimes when we're driving around I look around, I think, oh gosh, I wonder if they still, they still are in existence, but it was the Japanese that ate them. There was prune naba that used to grow by the prune tree, but I never could distinguish a good one or a bad one, but they used to grow in clusters by the prune tree, the root of the prune tree.

TI: And the Isseis would know, they would know which ones were good?

LH: They knew.

TI: And, and was it because similar mushrooms grew in Japan and they knew from there?

LH: You know, I don't know. I think maybe it's something they discovered here. I never thought of it, about connecting Japan and here with mushrooms, but Japan does have a good variety, as we do, too. So looking back, you could live on natural things that are growing wild if you had to. And they do in Japan, in the mountains. They have a lot of things growing wild that they could use.

<End Segment 9> - Copyright © 2010 Densho. All Rights Reserved.

<Begin Segment 10>

TI: I wanted to go back, you mentioned how you went to a brand new high school, Campbell High School. I wanted to ask about that, going, what was it like as a brand new school?

LH: Well, Campbell grammar school I was impressed with because when we took cooking -- and it was, every (girl) was required to take sewing and cooking in the eighth grade -- but Campbell grammar school had a beautiful kitchen; it was all stainless steel. And the sewing room was immaculate and it was a big room, and when we went to the high school it was probably comparable, but because the grammar, I was so impressed with the grammar school, the high school was just, but it was the new building... and I don't remember too much about the classes I took as much as -- isn't that odd? -- but I was probably fourteen or fifteen, we used to eat in the front, facing Campbell Avenue and, and along the wall there there was a sitting place and the door is here. The guys would sit over there and eat and the girls are over here. We never talked to each other. In those days we just did not hardly communicate. Maybe we said hello, but we never, there was no interaction between the men and women. It's so different from now. [Laughs]

TI: How about the student body? You talk about Alviso was mostly Japanese. When you go here, how many Japanese are at Campbell?

LH: I don't think there was any, I don't remember anybody involved in student body things. There was a Japanese club.

TI: Well, not student body, maybe just the, the classes, just your classmates. What percentage would you say were Japanese?

LH: Not too many. Not too many, uh-uh. No. There was a Japanese club because there was a lot, but because it's a high school and here in the valley they used to be called Union High Schools because Campbell Union covered Willow Glen and all the way up to where the Santa Clara Union bus picked up and then the Los Gatos was a Union high school, so between Campbell, Los Gatos, Santa Clara they had their own area where they picked up the students so that they'd cover everybody, and San Jose High probably had people from Barryessa and North.

SF: What'd you do in the Japanese club?

LH: Mr. York was our teacher, and I don't know, we just got together. I don't remember doing any really activities or anything because... you know, it's strange, we, I don't remember any parties. We probably had meetings and the yearbook picture. That's about all I remember. So it must've been, I mean, I don't remember anything where anything unusual happened. But (in the Japanese American community) we did have basketball teams, so Campbell, the girls, Campbell had a basketball team, San Jose had theirs and then there was Fremont, it wasn't called Fremont, was Washington High School, I think. They had got a girls team and we used to compete in basketball games.

TI: As, I'm sorry, as a Japan club, or as a school team?

LH: No, they, we were all Japanese. From Mountain View, Campbell...

TI: You had formed basketball teams.

LH: Uh-huh. And we'd play at the Buddhist gym or we'd go to, I don't remember where we went in Fremont, Washington High School, probably Mountain View. I don't remember. But I wasn't too much into basketball. I guess I... I was in there for a while, but that was it. But there was, and then the boys had their, all their basketball teams, too, the Zebras and the Nittos, so they didn't, they weren't like us, from districts. If they played basketball they played either for the Zebras or the Nittos, as far as I can...

TI: Now, during this time did you continue going to Japanese language school?

LH: When I was going to high school we went to the Horio residence on, near Almaden Avenue and... Plumber? Somewhere out there. Hillsdale, I think. The Horio residence, it's not the residence, it was part of the barn. They fixed it into a room for Japanese school, so what we did was we took the bus that went over to the, that way and, and we went to Japanese school, or I did, and Mr. Tanimoto lived in San Jose, so he would take me home. He'd drop me off on Meridian and I'd walk home from there. So I did go to Japanese school until, I guess until the war started. I went, but my brother didn't have to go. I don't know why. Isn't that odd?

<End Segment 10> - Copyright © 2010 Densho. All Rights Reserved.

<Begin Segment 11>

TI: So we're gonna start the second hour now, Lily, and before we move on to the war, I just wanted to ask, was there any other prewar memories that you want to talk about?

LH: Well, I remember the good times we had going to the Asahi baseball ground, and it was somewhere beyond Taylor Street north of Sixth Street and it was a open field. We had the bleachers and... everybody liked baseball in those days, and then our family friends, the Kanemoto brothers, I think there was Harry, Yoshito, and maybe Sauce that played for the Asahi team. And that was probably why we went. I don't know, but anyway, I remember my parents taking me there and it was dusty, but there was a lot of people. The other thing I remember about Japantown was they used to play sumo, sumo...

TI: But before you go there, going back to the baseball game, so what would you do during the game?

LH: I know I didn't sit on the bleachers long because I just remember running around, and I don't know what I was doing, but I was running around and, 'cause I never really concentrated on the ball game because I probably learned baseball in school. Anyway, so I was just a kid running around.

TI: And were you running around with other kids and just kind of playing?

LH: Probably other children, and I don't remember who, but I do remember the baseball field and the dust and the people playing baseball. And then I remember the sumo, and the only ones I remember playing are the Dobashi brothers. I don't know who they competed against, but simply because the Dobashis had the store in town I remember the Dobashi brothers. And they were big men. The other thing I remember was the Salvation Army used to play on the corner of Jackson and Sixth, by where Kogura's is, on the weekends, and I would stand there and listen to them and they had, this was, I found out later it was Mr. Iwanaga was the head, the captain or whatever it is. And they were all Japanese, but they had the Salvation Army uniform with the cap and the black and the, seemed like there was a little bit of red in their thing. And after I got married, their son, Daniel, was my husband's good friend and to this day I still correspond with him. We always visit -- they moved, they were transferred to Los Angeles and Mr. Iwanaga died there and then his wife lived to a hundred and four, but we've, they've been lifelong friends with us after I got married.

SF: What did the Salvation Army in Japantown do?

LH: I think they helped the poor people, and they were, it's where the Yu-Ai Kai building is. That was Salvation Army building; it was quite a big building. But I think they helped the poor people, and in what capacity I don't know. What else do I remember? Oh, of course Okita Hall, and the Obon Odoris they started and that was a fun time for me 'cause I was fourteen, fifteen and it was something different than, when you come out of the farm and it's, it's a fun thing, so I enjoyed that. And then the war started, so --

TI: Going back to the Obon dances, how would they compare to the Obon dances today?

LH: Well, in those days it used to be on Jackson between Sixth and Fifth, and there was a lot, we were all Japanese. Now it's mixed. And it was jam packed, because on both sides of the sidewalk, like I said, it was a hub, so everybody came out and it was really a festive time, and the dances with everybody in their kimonos, I thought it was really pretty. It was really beautiful. And then the Reverend Iwanaga from, was he in Watsonville? Somewhere out there. Anyway, he was the leader and he was a very good looking, charismatic man, and he was our teacher and I thought he was very good. There were some of the older ladies that helped, the leaders, like Grace Akahoshi was one of theem and they were good friends with the Hiokis because of the laundry, but anyway, yeah, those were good days. 'Cause I was just a teenager and I really didn't notice boys yet, but the dancing was fun because it was different.

SF: Did they have the food, the teriyaki and the games and that sort of thing in those days?

LH: You know, we had picnics and I don't, I don't remember. The word teriyaki doesn't stick in my memory when I was a child. That seemed to be after the war and when restaurants started serving... and we didn't go to, well, we did go to restaurants, but it was always Chinese restaurants. They didn't have any Japanese restaurants. It was the Ken Ying Low on Sixth Street and the, they used to call it Kiraku Tei, the one near Dobashi's, and I remember the cook there was a big Chinese man. He had a son. I thought his name was Roy. I don't know, maybe Jim (Yamaichi) would remember, but anyway, the son was older than I am, but I remember the, the oven and the chashu hanging and they, they're slow cooked, and don't ask me why I knew. I probably snuck into the kitchen. I don't know, but I do remember that chashu hanging in the oven. And that restaurant went way in the back, and we used to have our Kumamoto meetings, New Year party there a long, for a long time, and then they closed down after the war. It became part of Molly Fujino, Molly... well anyway, the Japanese people bought 'em out and I don't know what happened to that Chinese family after the war. And then on Sixth Street, Bill Dare ran Ken Ying Low, and we knew him because we had the laundry and he was in and out 'cause he had, in the back he used to raise moyashi and, I don't know why, but I've been back there. He had all these baskets with the, you put the beans and the moyashi grows, so I learned how that was done, and then I don't know what happened to him either because we quit the laundry and we all went our own way. So then I kinda lost contact with Japantown after that. This is after the war.

SF: Did Molly's have the gambling in the back?

LH: I don't know. [Laughs] They may, I don't know.

SF: I thought I heard that, so I was gonna...

LH: But I do know where they had gambling and I, I guess I learned this not too long ago. My husband wouldn't tell me, but Jim Sakamoto by Kogura's, I think he, they said that they had gambling back there. Am I right? I don't know. Ask Jim. He's the one that was my nemesis in Alviso, 'cause we were neighbors. We never got along. We never got along. And I always tell my kids, one time he shot at me. We were in the corral and I was sitting on the fence, and there he is over there and he had that BB gun. He took a shot at me and hit me in my back. [Laughs] But we always laugh about it now. We're good friends 'cause we're family friends, but my kids never let him forget that. Isn't that funny? Gee, and we're both old now and we just...

<End Segment 11> - Copyright © 2010 Densho. All Rights Reserved.

<Begin Segment 12>

TI: So why don't we move into the war?

LH: Okay.

TI: December 7, 1941, do you remember that day?

LH: You know, I can't remember where I was. I just remember at school nobody said a word. We were, all my friends, they're all hakujin -- well, I had Japanese friends, but not in the same class -- but nobody said anything. It was such a, I think about it and I thought it was so quiet. Everybody was just... and we went to school, I don't know, for a while before we moved, and yet nobody called me a "Jap" or said anything derogatory. All I remember is everybody was quiet. And so, and when we had to move and I went and told the teacher and everybody, everything went smoothly. Nobody questioned me or anything. I don't remember any upheaval of any kind during that transition time from school to moving.

TI: How about with your, your parents during this transition time, do you recall any conversations with them about what was gonna happen?

LH: No. All I remember was being told that the Kanemotos would bring us with their group, and so then at that, from then everybody's concern was getting rid of everything other than necessities, and we weren't the only ones. So it was a jumbled up time for everybody, because I knew, we had this old Model T Ford and my father had to sell it, but somebody bought it and I don't know who bought everything else 'cause... and I think what we brought was bedding, 'cause I don't remember buying anything, and as far as furniture, nobody took chairs or sofas or anything. I don't think we even owned a sofa in our life, but we had kitchen table and chairs.

TI: Now, what were you told to expect? I mean, in terms of packing things or getting ready, what did you know?

LH: I don't know anything. I was there and I just remember what I remember, and I don't, I don't even remember the Kanemotos coming after our things at the house. At that time we lived on Meridian. We moved from Fruitdale and on Meridian Road, and Mr. Nicora was our landlord then and he had an open field right off Meridian, so they just got through planting raspberries. It was our family and the Nakayama family. We planted raspberries there and then we had to move, so I don't know what happened to that farm after we moved, but like I said -- oh, and Mr. Nicora's house was the neatest house we ever lived in. It was a regular house and it had pinewood walls and had an indoor toilet. It was just great because we'd never lived in a place like that before. But anyway, and then we moved. All I remember was I went with the, I don't even remember which car my mother and father went in or my brother or my sister, and I went with the Matsumoto family because they went with us. Matsumoto's are related to the Kanemotos by marriage and I went with them up to Ogden, 'cause from Ogden they went to Colorado. The Matsumoto clan went to Colorado and the Kanemoto clan went, we went up to Tremonton in the north.

TI: But let's go back to the, the very beginning of the trip. Tell me about how many people were part of the group and just how you, you caravanned out of San Jose.

LH: I think there were about twelve families that went, and the main people that started this was Happy Fukushima and Mr. Sam Kanemoto, the oldest of the Kanemoto brothers, and Harry, his brother Harry, they went to Utah to Garland where Happy had a relative, and then they came back and I guess the Utah and Idaho Sugar Company decided to hire us, so they came back and the group (called U and I Sugar Company) formed. Happy had relatives in Sebastopol and so they became part of our group, the Yamamoto family, and the Yamamotos had a lot of boys and they were married to people, like in San Jose. And then the Kanemotos, we were the relatives for the Kanemotos, but it was basically our group... well no, I shouldn't say that. The, I think Happy lived in Berryessa, and then there were the Kakus that lived in Berryessa and Yoshiyamas. I don't know where the Taos came in, but they, and I don't even know where they lived before the war, but they settled in Watsonville after the war. Yoshiyamas, Taos, Yamamotos... Namimatsus from San Jose... Yoshiyama's... that's all I can remember.

TI: But roughly about twelve families?

LH: About twelve families.

TI: How many people would that be?

LH: I don't know, maybe, I never tried to count.

TI: About fifty or so?

LH: It would be under fifty, probably.

TI: Under fifty, okay.

LH: And we all left at different times. I don't know when the Kakus moved 'cause I didn't even know them, and I don't know, we all met in Utah when the sugar beet season started, and so my involvement, or what I remember would be the Kanemoto and our family.

<End Segment 12> - Copyright © 2010 Densho. All Rights Reserved.

<Begin Segment 13>

SF: When you started to leave, or get prepared to leave, do you remember how people felt or did you see anybody show any kind of emotion?

LH: I think they were concerned because there was the talk of going to camp and that was a new experience. It's the unknown, and for us too, 'cause we were gonna move and that's another unknown, so I know that there was a lot of confusion. And then we left, so I really don't know, but what people tell me what they had to do, get rid of things and then they went to assembly centers and then they went to the different camps. From what, my husband was from San Jose and he went to Santa Anita Assembly Center then from there they went to Heart Mountain, so I remember a few things that he told me about his experience.

SF: So when people decided to move, did they know that they were going to camp or was it just kinda like rumored?

LH: I don't know. I know that it was confusion because a lot of it was probably rumors until a definite, definite understanding of what was gonna happen to them was told to them, so it must've been confusing. For us, we knew that we had to move so we had to gather our things together and prepare for that, and we did move. And I think it was about April, and I remember leaving and I sat by the window on, on the right side of the car, and I was always glad 'cause I thought I could see more from that side than the other side. I was always comparing things. Anyway, so I know we stayed in Colfax at a motel, and I remember there was another family and I think they went to Denver or in Colorado, and I think their last name was, I think was Hiratsuka, because I knew the daughter, but they never came back to California, so I don't know what happened to them. Anyway, and so we stayed there the first night and then going through Reno. We never, none of us have ever, well, at least we hadn't, I hadn't gone through the Sierras before, and then going through Reno and I definitely remember that Reno sign on Virginia Street. And in those days I think I wrote that all the main interstates went through all the towns, so we went through Reno from Virginia Street, which started on the interstate, and now the freeway bypasses it, but we went under the arch and then went out, it went into the desert. And I remember the town of Lovelock because I thought, oh my gosh, "Love-lock." It's the middle of the desert; it's just, I called it a shanty town because that's what it looked like. It was just a few buildings and yet it had the name of Lovelock, and then as we left town, here's these three ramshackle outhouses. That really stuck in my mind. That's, and I remembered it because I think it was for the travelers, but it's right in the sagebrush, right off the road. And then going through all the other little towns, and I remember Winnemucca 'cause it was a bigger town. There was, then going, there was the Battle Mountain. I remembered that because of the name of the mountain. And then other little towns until we got to Wendover.

TI: Do you recall any encounters with the townspeople or anything, in terms of going to stores or talking with anyone?

LH: I don't because I never, if we got off the car it was probably to go to the bathroom, but then I didn't connect with any of the people. The driver probably would've, but nobody said anything, so I think everybody was in a shock yet. And people that are prejudiced would let you know right away. I feel that.

SF: You never had a problem of getting gas or anything like that?

LH: No, I don't remember that. And Wendover was kind of getting old and ramshackle, too, at that time, and then we crossed the border and I thought there was a wooden platform where we could see the Great Salt Lake, and that was a sight for all of us because we'd never seen miles of just white salt. And I think they still have a observation platform there. And then the other thing that I remember was when we were going towards Salt Lake City, along the road were these crystals of salt. Have you ever seen that? Because it's not there anymore. It's, the Salt Lake was much bigger and for some reason the water laps and then it forms these crystals, so they look like diamonds and you can't help but seeing them along the road, and it seemed like we stopped and gathered some, but I know that in Salt Lake City and those, the towns they used to sell 'em in those little Bull Durham like sacks for souvenirs 'cause where you'd, where the souvenirs were you could find these salt crystals. (Narr. note: A Bull Durham sack was a cloth drawstring bag about 2 1/2" x 4" which held loose tobacco.) And I have a friend that I talked to last week, and she's from Salt Lake, and so she says, "You know, they still have them, but you have to go inland more for crystals." You just can't see them because there's no water. It's all solidified now. But anyway, that was...

TI: But it sounds like for you it was kind of an interesting trip.

LH: It was.

TI: You were seeing, you were seeing the Sierras, the salt flats, the Great Salt Lake.

LH: Right. And sagebrush we'd never seen before and all these mountains. It's one range after the other. That's what Nevada is.

TI: On the trip, how would you talk about the mood of the people in the car? What, would you guys talk a lot? Would there be singing? How would you pass the time?

LH: The adults probably talked. I just, I didn't have, I don't remember talking to anybody. I just observed. If I, if I said anything, I know that when we got to Salt Lake and going through, by Bountiful, Farmington, Layton on this side, all these little towns, I remember the cottonwood trees 'cause there'd be a clump and then you'd see a house. Over here you'd see cottonwood trees and homes and farms. It's not like that anymore. And I, and then the farms, there were these tractors, they're Ferguson tractors and they're the ones with the two big wheels and two little ones and we, I used to see 'em here, but then not that many 'cause most of the farms, the orchardists had Caterpillar tractors. But over there they had these glass enclosures for the driver, but if you look now they're all like that, 'cause I went to -- well this weekend, anyway, I'd seen them -- they're enclosed. Like I said, looking back it's cold in Utah and in the, in the summer they have these huge dust storms. I mean, we'd be working and we could see it coming from the north; it's usually from the north, but this massive dust coming towards us, and I think that was for protection, too. That, and then all the towns are nestled along the Wasatch Range and the, Brigham City had all the fruit and farms and then it kind of levels off because it's the end of the Salt, the north end of the Salt Lake, so there's more level ground and you see more farms. And then I knew that there were some Japanese living in, native Japanese living along there. After a while we found out that they were born and raised there; the parents were there from a long time ago.

<End Segment 13> - Copyright © 2010 Densho. All Rights Reserved.

<Begin Segment 14>

TI: Well, in fact, you mentioned, what, one of the Kanemoto brothers went there. Did he have, he had a relative there, didn't he?

LH: It was Happy Fukushima that had the relative.

TI: Oh, Happy Fukushima. Okay. And so it was someone who had lived there for a while or had settled there before?

LH: They were the Nishiguchis and they lived in Garland, or, yeah, Garland. And they had a sugar beet farm. It was all flat out there. It's north of the Salt Lake, so it's a flat part of the valley, and I guess he arranged for this sugar company to hire us.

TI: So when you say "hire us," I'm curious what, can you tell me as much as you can in terms of what the arrangement was? Who did they hire? Was it just the adults, or were you part of the hiring?

LH: I don't say adults because none of the children were, we were teenagers and so, you know, juniors, because my brother's only one year younger than I am, but I don't remember, the first job I had, I think I said, was in the potato pit and at that time I probably was fifteen. But I went to work because, I don't know, it was expected of me, I guess, and I don't remember my brother --

TI: But these little jobs like the potato pit and other jobs you got, were those arranged through the sugar company or is this something that you --

LH: I can't remember that. I wondered about that, too. And it might've been, either that or they knew that we were there and wanted a job. I mean, we were, it was just us that lived in Fielding and the Kanemoto lived near Fielding, but it was Garland on the, on the Frontage Road. It's the road in the country, not the main interstate. So it was just the Kanemotos and the Kakus lived down further on that country road. And the Kaku sisters, there were two of them, my, close to my age. One was two years older, but then one was my age, so we, they and the Kanemotos worked in the potato farm, I guess, for Mr., forgot his name, Wynne? No, Mr. Adams. But it was a big open pit and they'd bury the potatoes in the fall and cover it up, so it stays like that during the winter and then the snow covers it and then in the spring we have to dig it out and they cut these potatoes into sections. And that's when I found out they have eyes then, and each one had to have an eye so, because that's where the plant sprouts up.

TI: And that's what they would plant, these little sections?

LH: That's right, in the field, and the, because it was in that kind of environment a lot of people had Quonset huts and they'd store 'em in there, but he didn't, and so it was an open pit, so that meant it had to go through the elements in the winter, so naturally a lot of 'em would freeze and rot and so the smell was just really bad. But it was work and I've said a lot that nobody complained. It was just part of our lives. We just accepted. And I look back and I think people now complain about everything and how the Japanese really endured.

TI: Now, were you aware of how much you were being paid to do things like the potato pit?

LH: I thought about that, too, but the only thing I remember was the sugar beets 'cause they had to count the rows and divide it up how many rows would make an acre, so they'd know how much a row cost, 'cause we worked by the rows. And, but I don't remember how much we got paid for picking the fruit or turkey plant. I don't remember any of that. Isn't that...

SF: Going back a little bit to when you, your family made the arrangements to go to Utah, with the families that were there originally, what kind of relationship did they have with the families over here? Were they good friends? How did, were they doing a big favor for someone or was it just...

LH: I don't know. I think because it was an emergency maybe, I wish I'd known exactly how it happened. All I knew is we, it was Happy's, and I didn't even, we didn't even know the Fukushimas and, but I don't know how it happened, but they probably knew they had relatives there and they didn't want to go to camp. They, so they went over there and renewed their acquaintance or whatever, because in those days people, most people didn't have the money and they didn't leave, if you're in Santa Clara Valley you don't leave Santa Clara Valley unless it was to go to San Francisco 'cause somebody's going to Japan. It's not like today. We were more, the community kind of just stayed within the community, I think.

TI: Okay.

<End Segment 14> - Copyright © 2010 Densho. All Rights Reserved.

<Begin Segment 15>

TI: When you left San Jose you were in high school, so when you got to Garland, Utah, did you attend school?

LH: I did.

TI: So tell me about that. What, what kind of school was it?

LH: It was a lot different. California, we got all our paper and pencils free. Over there we had to pay for it. And people are complaining here now, but I thought to myself, gosh, other states, they have to pay for, and I don't know if Utah, they still do, but at that time it was, that was new. And as far as school, it was just continuing my education, I think. There was nothing unique or that, that stood out in my mind, other than graduation. I know that we didn't get a, we just got a diploma. We didn't have a graduation ceremony because of the war.

TI: So that was for the whole school? The whole school just gave diplomas?

LH: We had, we got our diploma. Well, there must've been a thing. The thing we didn't get was the yearbook, so I have no pictures of my classmates or even the people of, that... there were Japanese in Utah. They were all farmers and they all, I think they all owned their land there. And until then, for me, being young, it was amazing that people lived outside of Santa Clara County. [Laughs]

TI: Well, how about your classmates in Utah? Was there curiosity about the "kid from California"?

LH: I don't remember anything. I know there was a lot of dances. They all danced, and I never learned. The sports, there was something unique about the sports, but I can't remember.

TI: How about, going back to the dances, would, would there be any issues or problems with, like dancing with someone from a different race? Like a white person with a Japanese or...

LH: I don't think so, simply because there are Japanese there.

TI: And so the Japanese there, they would dance with white people?

LH: Right. They're pretty well-integrated because, just like here, the, your hakujin friends are your hakujin friends and, and most, most hakujin got along with Japanese 'cause we work hard and I'm sure in Utah it was the same thing. And even when I was going to grammar school, there was only girl that called me a "Jap" and I still remember her name, but that was the only experience I've ever had of anybody ever calling me a "Jap." I do remember when somebody went into the town of Tremonton and they thought they, they thought they were Indians and I thought, my gosh, I don't know why that came up because there are Indians there. There's an Indian reservation north of Fielding, where we lived, near the border there's, there is a reservation, and so there's Indians living around there. They're, they're fairly easy to spot because they have a round face and they have a little bigger frame and they're, and they're dark. They're brown skinned, so, and they were very friendly. I mean, none of them every talked bad to us or anything. We just, we weren't, we weren't good friends or anything, but we do say hello to everybody and we never really ran into too many of them.

SF: In Utah, with all of the Mormons, do you think that Mormonism had anything to do with the, how people treated you?

LH: Well, I always thought they did because they went through the same thing. They had to flee to Utah, or that was one of the places they fled to, and all the Mormons we met were very good to us. They were very good and supportive of us, so I have nothing bad to say about Mormon people or their religion. And they never bothered us because of what faith we had. They never questioned it. I think they would have liked to have my brother and sister go to school, the Mormon school, but they did that. They called 'em wards, and I think my brother, who is seven years younger, my sister's thirteen years younger, she was three and he was, I don't know, seven or eight, I guess, but anyway, they went to the school there, but they were never, I don't ever remember them complaining about anything. Everybody was good. They were good. So as far as education I think no one had a problem.

TI: How about, because at this point I think you're, you were, attended the Buddhist church. Did you, were you able to go to any Buddhist ceremonies in Utah? Was there, like, Buddhist minister or anything like that?

LH: You know, I don't remember a church anywhere.

TI: Or a meeting, any kind of services in terms of Buddhist?

LH: No, I don't remember a church, because when, I told you there was one fatality, one sad part, that was at a, not a Japanese church. It was at a... I don't know if it was a Mormon church or what, but it was a local church. But I don't, now that you mention it, I don't even remember where the Buddhist church in Salt Lake City was, so that tells you where my, my religious thoughts were. It was not in my thinking, I guess, about going to church.

<End Segment 15> - Copyright © 2010 Densho. All Rights Reserved.

<Begin Segment 16>

TI: Well let's, let's shift a little bit and talk about some of the jobs you had. Like when you were attending high school and going to school, what did you do in terms of work?

LH: Well, I worked for the mayor of Garland, which was right near the school. I don't remember how I got the job, but I did and I remember my room was downstairs and his, he was in the service and I'm trying to think, you know those were days, they had no mayor, 'cause there was the mayor's wife and her sister had a little baby, too, so there're two little babies, and her husband was in the service, too. That's why she came to live with her sister during the war. And so it just boggles my mind. There was a time when the city had no mayor, but they treated me well and I got to go home on the weekends. That's why I worked at the potato thing and then I did domestic work for those that, I think they came to the house to ask if I would work for them. Once I worked for our landlord then other people knew that I did domestic work. So I did that for, I told you, a dollar a day and it was, well that, cleaning the walls with that pink, looked like play-doh and wiping the, the wallpaper down, that was an experience, because it's pink when it's new and when you wipe the walls down you're taking all the coal dust off, so it turns black. And that was, where it's reachable it's not bad, but when you have to climb the ladder and get the ceiling and... [laughs] My girlfriend worked, the Kanemotos, my best friend, she worked, but she's younger than I am and she's shorter, she got to do the bottom part, so I got to work on the ladder and do... but it was an experience and I only did it that one year. But I never knew you could clean wallpaper with a doughy thing. I think they still have 'em. I'm not sure, but anyway, it was convenient. And I worked for a big sheep ranch, owner of a big sheep ranch. He had a great big huge barn and they had a beautiful big house. They were very nice to me, so I did housework for them. They, I think they had children, too. But that's about the extent of my domestic work up north. And most of it was at Rowland Hall in Salt Lake City, 'cause otherwise I was working on the farm.

SF: When you were in Salt Lake City, did you go to Japantown in Salt Lake City?

LH: Yes. That's where we went on our days off with, there was two or three -- well, more than that, I think -- there was Ted Sato, George Sato, the two and then there was the Moritsunes, Mike Moritsune from San Jose and George Tomisaka from San Jose. They lived in Southern Utah, but they came to Salt Lake to work in the summer, too, so we met them there and they, for some reason they all worked in the garage and we, we did domestic work. And George and the Moritsunes we didn't see that much, but the other two from up north, we kinda stuck together and we went to eat at, I wish I knew the name of the restaurant, but there was a lady that worked in the counter, Doris, and she was Japanese, made the best banana cream pie. Everybody used to rave about her banana cream pie. I often wondered what happened to her, but anyway, we used to go eat there on our days off. And that's the extent of Japantown that I remember, and when I went back I tried to figure out where it was, but I couldn't. Salt Lake has changed a lot, too, because of the, the Olympics, around the train station. And I think I mentioned I used, I remember maybe twice I went home on the Bamberger train, Bamberger line it was called, and it ran along the Wasatch. It was a small train and I'd get off at Deweyville and a friend would pick me up and bring me home, and this friend that I knew, last week I asked her about the Bamberger line. She says, "No, it went out of existence a long time ago," but there is kind of a museum like where they have some remnants of the train or whatever in Salt Lake.

SF: Did you ever meet folks from the camps when you went out to, like to Salt Lake or these small towns?

LH: The only time we saw camp people in Salt Lake -- not in Salt Lake, I didn't see anybody from camp in Salt Lake. It was mostly just the three girls, the two Kakus and myself, and then, oh right, there was, at Rowland Hall there was the two Watamura sisters from, they were from Southern California near the border, Brawley, somewhere near there. And there was one more, Agnes, but I don't know where, she was from Southern California. They worked at Rowland Hall, too, and during the day I think they went to school with the Kakus, to domestic school, you know? Not domestic, commercial, they called it commercial. They taught to be a secretary or whatever. Anyway, they went to school during the day and I was the only one working full time at the, at Rowland Hall.

TI: And Rowland Hall was the, it was the...

LH: It was the Episcopalian school for girls. It was a private school and it, they had Emerald High School children, mostly high school. I don't remember little, little children at all. They were all older, and a lot of 'em were from divorced families, but from rich families. And there was one girl that I knew in California and she ended up there because of her parents, so that was, it was a surprise to see her there. And the, the leader, she was a gray haired woman, Mrs. Smith, and she was probably from England, but she ran the place and, and the teachers, I know they had a music class 'cause there was a Mr. Henrietta, he taught music, plus all the other things. But the part that stuck out for me is when we had to serve food and we had to wear those black uniforms, cotton uniforms with the white organdy collar and the white organdy wrist things and then the, the white organdy headband. I mean, it was formal. It was very formal, and so we had to serve them properly, from the right, we moved... but it was an experience. And so there were one, two, three, five of us, I guess, were in, six of us were in uniforms at night, so that was different. And I've never seen other people wearing outfits like that except in the movies. [Laughs]

SF: Were there other servers, like other ethnic groups?

LH: No, I don't remember. You know, I often wondered who took over after we left. I'm sure the Watamura twins and then Agnes stayed there, but then the three of us had to go back to the farm, but we, we did get back the next, next year they hired us and I remembered they gave me a dollar raise, 'cause I got, I was getting fifty dollars for the time a month, and then they hired me back at sixty dollars a month. So that was, that was good news, but it was a job. And then we went, from there we went to thinning, so looking back, the three of us worked all year round, whereas the parents kind of got off in the winter, after the, at least the men had more time off than the women 'cause we had to work in turkey farm, too.

<End Segment 16> - Copyright © 2010 Densho. All Rights Reserved.

<Begin Segment 17>

TI: So let's, let's talk about some of those other jobs. So you talked about going from the school in the, in the winter -- or, I'm sorry, yeah, winter -- to thinning, so you had sugar beet...

LH: Sugar beet thinning.

TI: And describe that. What did you do for sugar beet thinning?

LH: Well, the first year was torture, for me. It was torture. I'd never, it's really backbreaking because it's, you have a short handled hoe and you have to bend over and you hoe the ground. The sugar beet must be about three inches tall and the rows could be very long or, they're mostly long rows and you have to, the thing is to remove everything but one every maybe eight inches, 'cause that gives the sugar beet four inches to grow on both sides. Well anyway, so you, with one hand, the right hand you're using the hoe to remove and with the left hand you, you hold the one you want to save and you remove this, and then you take another step and move and then save this, and it's just a continuous step over step and removing and saving, removing and saving, saving the good one and the strongest looking one. And you do that all day. And we probably took breaks and it wasn't long; they, it was not compulsory or anything. It's not like now we have the law, but in those days there weren't such things and if we did have breaks it was water and I don't remember anything else. But I do remember the jug of water and they covered it up with wet burlap to keep it cool. And for lunch we always had obento in a container and it, everybody had rice and some kind of okazu like thing, and I don't think we took an hour off. We, because it was piece work, everything was piece work, so when you're thinning and you get started and you look back and everybody, the fast ones are way over there, the slow ones are here, and I was not a fast one, so I was, the first year especially. You could look and it's, it's a sight to see because there're all these people and some are there, some are here. It's just a picture. You could frame it.

TI: And how, how many would be out there at a time?

LH: Well, with all those people, I don't know, more than twenty-five.

TI: And so would your whole family, or who in your family would be there?

LH: My father, my mother, my brother and I, and all the Kanemotos and their, well they, none of 'em had children old enough, so yeah, my brother and I, probably, and then the Kaku sisters. Oh, and the others, the Taos had the boys, and Helen Yoshiyama... yeah, we were the youngest, fifteen, sixteen.

TI: How long would that thinning season go on?

LH: Until the cherries started, and that was, so would that be May, end of May? Probably. May, June.

TI: And you would start in...

LH: Then we would start the cherries --

TI: No, but before cherries, so when would you start the thinning? You would start in...

LH: Probably May some time.

TI: Okay, so about a whole month of thinning.

LH: I think it was maybe a little more than a month, and after all the fields were done, like I said, from southern Tremonton to Malad City in Idaho. And at the time it was work, so we did what we had to, but looking back I though, my gosh, we went from here to here and then I looked at the map the other day and I thought, oh my gosh, we must've gone fifty miles that way, fifty miles, but it isn't. It's not that far. Maybe we did go almost fifty miles, but not quite. Yeah.

TI: Okay. And then you said cherries, so what was that, cherry picking?

LH: Well, the first cherries are the Montmorency's. They're clear, bright orange cherries and you have to pick them as fast as you can into a bucket because they're made into pie cherries, so we didn't need the stems. But they're so pretty and they're so translucent, this dark orange, and they're sour, so they called 'em sour cherries. But those are the first ones we picked, and so in order to -- and I don't remember how many pounds it held -- it took a lot because there's no stems on 'em, but the ones that are fast in sugar beets are fast with their fingers picking cherries, too. And it's usually most, some of the men were really fast, and I know my mother was fast. The ladies, the mothers were fast, too. But I don't consider myself fast, but I tried. My brother was faster than I was, but anyway, it was, it was work. The other thing was that we had to carry a ladder, so we learned how to carry a ladder to hold it so it won't tip, so I know how to handle a ladder now. And I look back and I think, oh gosh, my mother used to carry a ladder, but you know, if I think back, they were in their thirties and forties yet, so they're in their prime yet. And I don't regret it because I did learn how to carry a ladder, so when I do my yard work I know how to handle a ladder. And picking, my parents had persimmon tree and they had orange trees and so I used to use, and walnuts, so I did use the ladder.

TI: So you learned all these practical skills.

LH: Exactly. Exactly.

TI: So after these cherries, what was next?

LH: Then the Tartarians. It's just like here, Tartarians, and then the Bings and last was the Royal Anne's, but we did all the cherries and, but in between, if they needed us to hoe the sugar beets we did go. And every ranch didn't require hoeing, so we did hoe when we had to, and then from there we went on to the apricots and those you picked in a canvas bag that we carried around and it was put right in front and the bottom came out when we put it in the box. It was different for the apricots and peaches. Apricots, I don't remember too much, but the peaches were so good that these huge Hales and the Albertas, you just can't find those anymore, but they were, and they were known for their fruit.

<End Segment 17> - Copyright © 2010 Densho. All Rights Reserved.

<Begin Segment 18>

SF: How did these jobs get arranged? Like if you went from one fruit to another, and the sugar beets, was there, how did you know that the ranch needed help?

LH: I kind of think Mr. Davis was, did that, because how would they know? We lived so far away from there. This is Brigham City on the way to Ogden, which is closer to Brigham City than where we lived, 'cause we're up North, so I have a hunch Mr. Davis had a hand in all, most of our jobs, thinking back anyway.

TI: And Mr. Davis was the, with the sugar company, U and I Sugar Company.

LH: With the sugar company, and he was the only rep that I remember with us always, always. He was always with us, and he was a gray haired, thin man, very nice looking and always helpful. He was always there. And I don't ever remember an unkind word about him at all. He was always there, uh-huh. And then from the peaches, in between the tomato, the cannery in (the town of) Perry would hire us and so some of us would work on the belt, and I don't know what they did 'cause I, what I, I was hired to get the cans and put it on the belt so that they could be filled, but I know the mothers and the, the other people worked somewhere in the cannery and I don't know, I just don't know what they did. And then the other thing I did on, I did work on the belt with the string beans. It comes down the belt and then you remove the bad ones and let the others go. And we didn't do that too much because we had to go pick apples, I think it was, or pick beans. We had to pick beans, bush beans there on the ground. But when we worked at the cannery, like I said, the canneries have these cabin like places, well, that's where we saw the Heart Mountain girls. They were from Heart Mountain, been hired to work at the cannery. And I don't think I knew any of them, so, other than that they were from Heart Mountain and I think some other camps, too.

TI: And they were there, like, on a work release?

LH: I think so. Uh-huh.

SF: Did you ever compare yourself being on the outside with the camp people? Did you think you were fortunate or less fortunate?

LH: Those things never entered our mind. It was, we had a job, we got it done. We, I don't think our minds strayed that far. It just, what had to be done was done for the day, and then we'd go home and wait for the next day. I mean, I didn't have any longings for anything, if that's what you mean, you know, I wish I could do this or that, other than I said later that, about skiing. [Laughs] Skiing, and learning to dance. And then we picked bush beans and there we did meet somebody from San Jose working there, too. It was one of the Yasukawa boys and I forgot his name, but he was there from somewhere. I don't, maybe from camp. I don't know. I should ask, but not the Yasukawas... They're almost gone, all gone now. The only ones are the ones our age. Well anyway, and then from the beans we went to pick apples. We picked tomatoes, too, somewhere I forgot, and that was a job because we have three rows to, we take three rows, each person, and then the box is in the center, so we have to fill the box and then there's, we stacked 'em up along, along the side, so we had to lift that and probably five high, four or five high. And then when we picked the beans it's by the pound, so everybody's trying to fill the sack up as much as we can because they deduct for the sack, so those sacks would be so heavy and we'd have to lug it up to the... [laughs]. It seems funny, but that's how it was. Every, everything counted. It meant something. But I remember the heavy sacks there, too.

Oh, and the apples we picked in buckets and the first ones were the Yellow Delicious, the Golden Delicious, and then the Red Delicious... or maybe not. There was the other one, the red one, the Macintosh? They're smaller. There were three different kinds of apples we picked, those three, but that was good 'cause we got to take apples home and my mother used to make, they used to can the tomatoes and can the apples. What else did they can? Well the fruit, 'cause we could take it home, so we had canned fruit. The parents, well, I did the same thing. They, whatever they could they canned for winter use and that was the advantage of working in the fields. Nobody had a pressure cooker, so we didn't do the vegetables, except tomatoes you don't, you can do that on an open kettle. And then after the, that was the topping season.

TI: This is back to sugar beets?

LH: Back to sugar beets. So that was another experience. You have these topping knives with the point on the end so you could grab the beet and you'd grab the leaves and you whack off the beet from the leaves. And then all the beets would be in a row here and the leaves would be on a row here, and when all the beets are topped the truck would come and so the people on this side and people on this side and we'd throw to fill up the dump trucks, and the dump trucks were special because I think when they went to the, to wherever they unloaded near a railroad track, I think the bottoms came out or something like that, anyway, so it just went down, either that or it dumped this way, I can't remember, but anyway, they were special, built specially for sugar beets. So we'd throw them over and you'd grab 'em by the tail part of the sugar beets and throw 'em in, and it's like everything else, if the ground is good you have these big sugar beets. If the ground is poor you have these small ones, so if the small ones are, it takes a long time to fill a truck, but these big ones are heavy and so by the time truck gets mounded like this you have to be careful because sometimes it goes over and hits, you could hit the person. And it had happened, but I remember laughing.

TI: Oh, on the other side you would, you would throw them.

LH: On the other side, exactly. And in the winter after the freeze they're just frozen, so they're heavier. But we used to get a big laugh if it went over and somebody got hit. Nobody got hit in the head, but maybe in the shoulder or something, but it didn't happen, but it, when it did we all got a big laugh out of it. So it was hard work, it was cold, and we got it done. [Laughs] And then the, from there I said the men got off, but the other thing was sometimes the men worked in the wheat fields, too. It was, it had to be in the fall because I remember seeing them and if you've ever carried a sack of wheat, it's really heavy and Japanese men aren't, most of 'em aren't big. My father, most of them, there were some taller ones, but they had to carry that big thing. But there were times when they worked in the wheat, the men did.

After the topping, the women, and I don't know how we got the job, but in Tremonton they had a turkey processing plant and I don't know who did it before we were there, the years before or after, but for some reason they hired us those couple of years we were there and we were the only ones. There were no hakujin. There were just the German prisoners of war that took over the killing of the birds and taking, defeathering them and, and I don't remember any hakujin, except in the other building where after we'd dressed it all it went probably for packing. For some reason we never ventured into the other building where, where it went to be packaged or whatever was done with it. But when we first got there we opened that door, the smell was so bad and then, but then, you know, once you get working on it you forget it 'cause you're concentrating on your work. But the German prisoners of war, there was a prisoner of war camp on the hillside north of Ogden. It's not there anymore, but they had this camp up there, the barracks and that's where they sent the prisoners of war, so a busload came every morning, might, may be about thirty-five miles maybe. I'm not sure, but anyway, they came in the morning and there was a guard and they'd unload them and they'd come in.

And it started from this wall, from here the turkeys came in cages and they're taken, they'd take 'em out and they'd hang 'em up by their feet and this, this chain goes, keeps going around back and forth, back and forth until the very end where they go to be packaged, but that chain comes back again, so it's just continuous. And the first prisoner would string it up, I remember. The next one would, I think he slit his throat and, and I'm not sure if he beheaded him or if the next person did. But anyway, it went down and then they'd take the big feathers off the arm there, the big feathers and the tail feathers, so the men along the wall would do that. And then it'd come around and it'd go through a wax bath. It's this brown wax and it's hot and the turkey would dip in there and come out and then it would go through a cooling bath and then that hardens the wax. And then it would keep going and then the other prisoners would peel it off in chunks to try to get, hopefully get most of the, the feathers off, the big ones, after the big ones. And then it would come to us and then, by then it's just the little pin feathers and there's a lot of 'em, so it's our job to pick one and follow it, we're always walking and you'd have to pick all those little pin feathers off until it's clean. So by the time it, you're at the other end you hope it's all done, and it usually is. Once in a while we had to unhook it and start over where we started because all the birds are not plump and good looking. Some of 'em are sickly looking and they're bruised, black and blue and thin, like they were not healthy birds and those are the ones that the feathers, it's hard to take off, so it takes longer. Then you'd have to unhook and start over again.

SF: What happened to the bad birds?

LH: I don't know. We thought maybe they made it into soup. Yeah.

SF: Were, did the Germans have the good jobs or the Japanese?

LH: Oh, ours was easy because the, it's all cleaned except for those little pin feathers. If you ever buy a turkey, look. You'll see some of those little pin feathers there, 'cause I take 'em off before I cook the bird 'cause I've been there and I know that they don't belong there. I don't know how they do it anymore, but that's how it was in those days. But those German prisoners really had to work hard. And they were a good looking bunch. They're all tall except a couple were short. One man was forty-five. I asked him; he was forty-five. He was the oldest one. And the other one was the youngest one; he was fifteen. Can you imagine? Fifteen. Anyway, so they were all working there and on their time off they used to, with the wax that's on the, the flume thing, they would form their village, buildings with the roof and the wall. I wish we had kept somethin' like that, but they were remarkable. And then while they're working they'd be singing, and then one of the ladies was telling me they sound like the Nihon no marching, the military marching songs, with gusto. And they really enjoyed it. And the only one we knew was that, I said the "Roll Out the Barrel." It's German and we didn't know all the words, but whenever, the "roll out the barrel" came out when they sang that, but it was entertainment for us, too, by them. We got along simply because we were both sort of in the same position, and I wished I kept in contact with one, 'cause I used to write it down, but I never did. I wish I did.

TI: That's a good story.

LH: But I thought that was an experience most people don't get to do, working with the prisoners. They're just human, just like we are. Yeah, they have, they don't want war either, but some are fanatics about war and killing, but... yeah, it was a good experience to go through.

<End Segment 18> - Copyright © 2010 Densho. All Rights Reserved.

<Begin Segment 19>

TI: Earlier you, you mentioned Mr. Davis with the sugar company, and there's a point where someone wanted to go visit Heart Mountain and he helped make this happen. Can you tell that story?

LH: Okay. Sam Kanemoto, he's the oldest of the Kanemotos and, and his daughter is my best friend. We're, his son is my brother's, we're all friends. He, it got, he thought about it and so he asked Mr. Davis and Mr. Davis evidently said yes, and so for some reason I got to go. My brother, and I can't remember if he went, too, but I don't remember, but anyway, so his family, he had one son and two daughters, Marie, Rosie, and myself, so we, and he had a new Chrysler New Yorker. He had bought that just before the war started, so it was a big car. Anyway, Mr. Davis arranged to get the green -- not the green stamp, but the stamps, for gas stamp -- so we could go to Heart Mountain. I thought that was really nice of him. And I don't know why it was just us, Maybe it was because he's the only one that asked. Anyway, so I, we went through Yellowstone, which was an experience, and then we went through Billings and then got to Heart Mountain. And I had a good time there. I mean, I didn't go to any, I didn't see any dances or anything. I just went to visit my old schoolmates and family friends, and I don't know if you know the Ichishitas, but there the one's I said had a laundry on First Street, South First Street, and I knew them, so I stayed with them. And the Kanemotos stayed with their friends. So I got to visit my girlfriends from school and family friends, and the one family I remembered was my father's friend. He told me to look them up and it was someone he knew in Los Angeles and they lived in the opposite corner from where I was. We walked down there and he had a rock polisher. He collected these rocks and he polished them, and so he had big ones and little ones. They were works of art. I mean, they, I don't know what the rocks were, but I know there's such a thing as agate and whatever there is around there, but that was his hobby, I guess, while he was in Heart Mountain, because a lot of people developed hobbies because they didn't have to do anything, no work unless you went down to the farm area. But anyway, that and then the girls, the Ichishita girls are sewing all these Hawaiian shirts and they were knitting and crocheting and things that I never got to learn to do and I envied them so much. [Laughs] Anyway, and like I said, I used to wish somebody would adopt me from there so I didn't have to go back. Isn't that terrible? But anyway --

TI: Because from your perspective you had to work a lot harder and didn't have free time to do these kind of things?

LH: Right.

TI: And you're just a teenage girl.

LH: [Laughs] Right.

SF: So did you ever feel that you wished your family had waited to be evacuated?

LH: No, I never thought that. No. I guess in my brain I just, like they did, we just accepted whatever was there and we did it. And like I said, it was just wishful thinking about camp, because they didn't have to work and I, in my heart I knew I had to go back. So I envied them, and then I had girlfriends in other camps, too, and they used to send me, I think it was Tule Lake, no, the one in Utah. They used to make these carved birds and they'd send it, and I thought they could do these things which we didn't have time to do. But that's alright. Everybody had their own experience. We had ours. And like I said, after the, the turkey processing we went to Salt Lake City to work. So that was...

<End Segment 19> - Copyright © 2010 Densho. All Rights Reserved.

<Begin Segment 20>

TI: But then eventually your family was exploring going to Idaho. So tell me about that?

LH: And I don't know why that happened, but the Kakus and Kanemotos decided to move to Idaho, so, and I don't know why I got to go again, but I did go. And I know that my father paid it, paid rent to stay in Payette, and I remember the house, but I don't remember where the Kanemotos were gonna stay. I knew the Kakus were gonna stay in Weiser, but the house we were gonna rent was, it's on a plateau, 'cause if you go to this edge you could look down and you'd see the Snake River way down there, so it's not safe, but people that live in circumstances like that will adjust to it. But I do remember the Snake River way down. And I don't know if you know the Furuichis in Los Altos, but they lived in Ontario and I remember they went to visit them and I thought maybe they were the connections why we went there. I don't know, but, and I never asked, 'cause I lived right near them in Mountain View and they're all gone now. I should've asked while some of the older ones were alive.

TI: And what was the attraction of Idaho at this point? Why were families going there? Was it for farming?

LH: I think they were gonna farm, uh-huh, in the sugar beets, 'cause that's, looked like that's what they were growing there. And then the Kakus said they worked in the onions, onion. They raised onions. They worked in the onion fields. And then from Weiser they moved to Quincy, I think it's in Washington, and I think the father and mother were there until they died and then the, then the girls got married and they all went different places. And the boys all, Mr. Kaku was the type that wanted all the boys to go to college, so they all went to college and two became doctors. The rest are engineers. And the girls all went to commercial, to take typing.

TI: So like business college?

LH: Business college, that's it. That's what, that's what they did.

TI: But then your family decided not to go to Idaho in the end.

LH: When we got back they said, they announced that they, we can go back, so my father wanted to go back. He didn't want to go back to Idaho.

TI: Back to San Jose?

LH: Uh-huh. And the Kanemotos, too, so we both came back here, and the Kanemotos, the house they lived in, the landlord still had the house vacant and the farm vacant, so they went back to the house they were in. And we had nowhere to go, so we stayed at the Buddhist church, I think at that time the old Buddhist church was still there 'cause it seemed like that's where we were, downstairs, 'cause the church was upstairs. You had to go up and we were downstairs, and the rooms, we weren't the only ones. There were other returnees staying there during the interim looking for a place to stay. So we weren't there very long. My father got a job at Bracker Ranch. Brackers were the Germam family that had a big pear ranch and they used to have Japanese before the war, too, so they had living quarters for their workers in the orchard.

TI: I'm curious at, in that period of time you were at the Buddhist church, sort of like a, like a hostel almost, did people ever ask you, "So what camp were you in?" Do you ever remember people asking?

LH: I don't remember anybody there but us. I don't remember talking to anybody.

TI: Or just returning to San Jose, when you came across your friends, did, was that kind of a common, as people are reuniting, reseeing each other, they're asking, where were you, what were you doing?

LH: I don't remember going through that. All I remember is we moved to Bracker's and we worked. We started work. My father worked for the pear ranch. My mother and I worked for Frank Narimatsu, and Frank Narimatsu was in Utah with us. He came from camp, and I don't know which one, but anyway, he came to live or farm out where we were, too, for a while and that's how we knew him. And he came to San Jose and he, he rented farms around the valley, so we'd travel from one farm to the other planting celery and, I don't know if you know, celery planting is, they have these little plants that they, they grow in the nursery and they have long roots and about that much celery, and they cut the tops off so it's, it's this little plant with no top and the roots. And they're all in bundles. They come in crates, and we'd take a bundle about this big and put it in our hand like this, and we have boots on and the row, all the rows with running water and so we'd step sideways planting in, you'd dig a hole with your finger, put celery in and kinda cover it and then go plant the next one, so it's step by step like thinning, only you're planting celery.

TI: It sounds like back breaking work.

LH: It was, but with thinning you, you're, we're used to that. But we did that a lot, and then of course we had to hoe and then we had to harvest, and then we picked, he had tomatoes, too, and I think he had peas someplace, but basically he was a celery farmer. We did that for two years at least, and all the workers, they were from downtown Japanese Town, so I got to meet all these guys from downtown and then a lot of them were relatives, the Koguras and all the Kogura relatives, and then... well anyway, I think I was the only young girl and all the rest were mothers, and so I, it was a fun thing. We were just a group. We all got along and we just worked hard. And topping time was, or sugar, not sugar beets but celery harvesting is, you use a big knife and you cut, cut the celery and you take all the, you trim the root and then you take all the little pieces around it, and then we piled 'em and somebody came and put them into crates. Let's see...

SF: Where did the, your, these celeries and so forth, where did they get sold to? Were they sold to a Japanese...

LH: I don't know. Somebody used to come to the ranch, but I don't know if they, I can't remember. No, I don't remember. But those are the days when, because I was the only young girl and a lot of 'em were married to, to first sons, they always, I remember because they told me, "Don't ever marry the first son." [Laughs] You have to work, you have to take care of your in-laws. But I married the eldest son and I did the, exactly what they told me not to. Oh gosh.

<End Segment 20> - Copyright © 2010 Densho. All Rights Reserved.

<Begin Segment 21>

TI: But in terms of, now in terms of farm work, about this time you made a shift here. You now went to the...

LH: He decided to move to near, I think it was San Dimas in Southern California, and I think he was influenced by other people, too, but I won't go into that, but he moved.

TI: Well no, I'm talking about you first, 'cause you went to the, what, the Hazmore School of Design?

LH: Hazmore.

TI: Hazmore.

LH: My mother went to sewing school, so, I don't know, she must've had an ad in the paper, Japanese paper, Hokubei or whatever it was my parents took, so I thought maybe I'll go to that. So it was a seven month course and so we learned how to draft and sew, but the thing was, the unique part was that it was on Seventh and Market, but all these Japanese girls were there. They came from Kingsburg, from Napa, from Madera, so I met all these Japanese farm girls.

TI: This is in San Francisco?

LH: At Hazmore. It was funny that we all met there. They all had the same idea to go to sewing school, so I got to be friends with all these different Japanese girls from different parts of the Bay area, well Fresno, Kingsburg, Napa, Madera... well anyway, and the Chinese. There was some Chinese, and then one of the teachers was Japanese and Mrs. Hazmore was a hakujin and they both taught drafting and sewing. So I did learn how to sew, other than from grammar school 'cause they used to teach, that was, we had to learn, but we learned how to make a suit, how to do the interfacing and a lot of things pertaining to sewing. And, but I never went into it because it was not my thing. And in between I was working at the pear ranch harvesting and picking strawberries with my mother at friend's places, and that's how I met my husband was in the strawberry farm. But I saw this ad, California Finishing Company opening up right close to where I lived, so I thought, well, I'll go apply for a job because I like art. Well, there was no artwork, but there was, he hired me for silk screening. In those days, all things are done photographically now, and in those days what they, what he did was silk screened bathing suits and drapery material, and so the screens, the screening table must be five feet, whatever, and the screens are that wide, but it could be long, and the image is photographed on there with an emulsion and everything that you don't want on there has to be painted out by hand. That was my job. And then he asked me if I had any friends that would like to work as silk screeners, so I asked my girlfriends and we're all farmers' daughters, anyway, so they all came and we had a whole team of girls, and one takes, let's see, one screener here... you have to take the frames and you have this squeegee and that's their job, and you move it to the next thing and so you keep going down this long line doing one color at a time, and that's what silk screening is. So if it has, your design has five colors, you have five different screens and five different women working on it. It was different. But they all liked their job and they all did a good job because we were all there 'til the very end. He must've been there about three years and it just didn't pay off because it was hard to compete with the East Coast. And he was from a wealthy family in Connecticut.

TI: And this is Mr. Steven Castle?

LH: Castle, right. And his, his parents were all in Standard Oil, so when he went back his brother did, I don't know, one was gas, one was oil. I think he was doing the oil part after, and so we, well, we, I worked there and then my husband, they had a laundry, so he knew how to work the washing part, so he got hired with the dye department, and when Mr. Castle came he brought his dye man, he brought his, the one that makes the screens, the silk screener. Well, the five basic people he brought from back East and then the rest of us were hired, and we were all Japanese except one silk screener was a hakujin girl and then, and she was the only hakujin other than the five main, and then in the office he hired Bill Matsumoto for the, help the, doing the bookkeeping.

TI: Do you know why Mr. Castle hired so many Japanese?

LH: I don't really know. I knew I worked hard, 'cause I...

TI: 'Cause you were the first.

LH: I was the first, and then the other one that hired was a Portuguese man from the Azores. He and I, he made the screens, the, with the lumber and the thing. And I'm trying to think who did the rest, the imaging part that I painted out. There had to have been somebody else, but it's amazing, because I always credited him for taking us out of the farm and then he hired my father-in-law, 'cause they didn't have the laundry yet, to work at home, his house and my father-in-law cooked for him and did the house work. And then he got married, so he, after he got married my father-in-law was there until they moved back East. Yeah.

TI: Did you, by any chance, stay in touch with Mr. Castle?

LH: We did, all the time. And we even went to visit him, and he lived in Stonington, which is right near Mystic, and we went out to dinner and, but at that time he had cancer already and he was going to Boston to, for his treatments. And he died maybe a year or so later. Yeah. But he was very good for all of us. And they were Jewish people.

<End Segment 21> - Copyright © 2010 Densho. All Rights Reserved.

<Begin Segment 22>

TI: Okay, so we're gonna start the third part, and you, you were talking about, well, you finished the, working with Mr. Steven Castle at the, the finishing company. And that was located, you mentioned Santa Clara?

LH: In Santa Clara on Lafayette.

TI: So when did that end? About what year did that end?

LH: Let's see, I got married in '48... probably '47, '47 or sometime in 1948, 'cause we got married in October, so it could've been, probably early '48.

TI: So after Mr. Castle decided to close the business down, what did you do next?

LH: I was working in the, with my mother, the strawberries off and on, and then I got that job with him. What did I do after?

TI: After. After.

LH: Oh, I got married while I was there.

TI: Okay. And so tell me who your husband was and, and what was your husband's name?

LH: My husband's name was Eige Hioki, but he, like myself, got the name Ernest for school purposes, so they called him Ernie. But his old friends, hakuijin and Japanese, still called him Eige.

TI: And so you got married to Ernie, and what was he doing at this time?

LH: It was after the war and they couldn't start the laundry because all those different circumstances, and he was working for a Chinese merchant, grocery store on First Street, and this Chinese grocery store had fruit and vegetables and, I think, a meat market in the back. I forgot, 'cause there was two on First Street, one on South First and one on North and he was on the one with, on the North First Street side. So he came to buy strawberries where I was working in Santa Clara with my mother, and I don't know, we got to talking and that's how we met. And the funny part was my mother knew his grandfather 'cause my mother was in Japan when his grandfather came back from here to die because he got cancer, so he went back to Japan to die and my mother was there, so she knew the name. And she remembered his wife, 'cause I think his wife was (...) in Japan and he came here to open up the laundry and, and the oldest son, my father-in-law, came with him. And he, they had, my father-in-law had a brother, too, but he was the oldest son, so he came with the father.

TI: So you met him when you (picked) strawberries (...).

LH: Right.

TI: And he found out your mother knew the family already, so that was...

LH: Right, and that makes a difference. I, because I remember going out with, I never had that many dates. I guess I was busy working. Well anyway, maybe I went out once or twice and they always ask you who and then my father's getting worried 'cause I'm twenty already and not married and he wanted me to marry a family friend's son. Well, I knew him, but I didn't know him enough and I said no. Well anyway, so I guess I met my husband when I was about twenty-one.

TI: And the fact that your mother knew the family made a difference?

LH: Made a difference. Right.

TI: Good.

<End Segment 22> - Copyright © 2010 Densho. All Rights Reserved.

<Begin Segment 23>

TI: So, so part of what his family did was the laundry business. Can you talk about how that got started up again?

LH: Oh, I don't remember how old, how many years it was, but we, they decided to start and they had to get a permit and all that and then, like I said, the property was damaged quite a bit, and I don't even remember what the building looked like anymore, but all I remember was going with my husband and cleaning up the backyard and I, there was a garage in the back and I know there was a lot of grass and this hole with a lot of tin cans and bottles. And he said there was a fish pond there, so there was the remains of that. And that part, all I remember is all the hard work we had cleaning up the place. And then, and once we got it level, then they rebuilt again and it wasn't a big place, but it was enough to start the laundry. And he had, you know, the washer was huge and it was all wood. It was really an antique piece, I think. They should've saved, or somebody should've saved it. It was huge and it's all thick wood made into a round drum. That was the washing machine. And it had a door. And I don't know where it came from, but it was there and the press was in and the different things for a laundry and a dry cleaner, 'cause I wasn't there during the building process 'cause I think I was working somewhere. But anyway, they started the laundry again and I worked in the back folding clothes and sorting out clothes and marking them, you know the customers, you have to put a mark on the back so you know where each one goes. And my sister-in-laws worked in the front, one in the counter and I'm trying to think what the other one did. They both worked on the counter, I think, 'cause none of 'em worked in the (back). I had two sister-in-laws and my mother-in-law did the sewing, repairing. And I always worked in the back and shelving and wrapping and whatever had to be done.

TI: So how many total people worked at the laundry?

LH: About six or seven, I guess.

TI: And how many of them were family members?

LH: We were all family.

TI: Oh, so it was all family-run?

LH: Uh-huh.

TI: And so who, who was in charge?

LH: Probably my father-in-law. My, my husband was very passive. He, all his life he took orders from his father and in the end towards the end it kind of destroyed the relationship, simply because he didn't think he was treated fairly with all, 'cause he remembered how all his life he had to work for his father, doing things and not doing things that other kids got to do and, and then... well, there was more than several years of disconnect between my family, my husband and I, and the, and the whole family.

TI: And that came from the, the work...

LH: Dissention. Because I quit. I had to leave because we had six children and we had no insurance and I wasn't getting paid, and I think all, all of 'em got the same wage and we had six, seven, eight mouths to feed. And in the meantime my sister-in-law on my, my brother's wife worked at the county hospital. She worked for the Director of Nursing. She says, "You know, there's gonna be an opening for, a civil service class opening for a nurse's aide," and I'd always wanted to be a nurse, so I went and took that, but when I announced it there was, there was, it didn't, it didn't hit the family right.

TI: 'Cause they thought you should've stayed working at the business.

LH: Right. I guess...

TI: But you were thinking of your family.

LH: Right.

TI: And by doing the civil service, getting health insurance for the family would've been important.

LH: Right.

TI: And you said that at this time you were not being paid. It was just, your husband was being paid.

LH: Just, yes, the three, the three sons and the father. I think they were all getting the same amount and they didn't have as many children as we did, and I thought we did... I don't know, I shouldn't say it, I guess, but we did do a lot extra. We did all, he did all the, during vacation time or whatever, he did all the repairing or whatever had, servicing of all the equipment and I changed all the shelf linings and cleaned the back and, you know, to get it in working order for the year. I was from the farm. Work was not a problem for me and I was the type that if it had to be done it, it got, had to be done. And I, I remember I took care of all the backyard, the weeds came up all around the garage and the backyard 'cause it was all dirt, and I remember keeping that clean. I'm not bragging. I'm just saying what's there.

TI: So why was it that when you left the business sort of fell apart or stopped --

LH: Oh, because they started paying the wives, and I don't know why they disbanded, but they decided to do, I really don't know 'cause I was already working at the hospital and my husband is not the type that's gonna whine or anything. He just kept a lot of things to himself. And, but it, looking back, it was the best thing that happened because he got a job at Syntex and he worked there for the rest of his life, and that's why, the benefits were good and I can live the way I am now. And his brothers went to college and my sister-in-law was a dietician. She had gone to college. And the other two, I think one brother stayed in the cleaning business with another company and then his wife worked for the county, I think. But we did better, 'cause laundry work was, they used to work until one o'clock, twelve o'clock. I'd be waiting at home with the kids in bed and I'm looking out the door 'cause they're so late, but finally after I don't know how many years I says, "You know, you can do this every day. Why don't you just quit at nine or something?" So they start working 'til nine, and then finally I think I told my husband, "Why don't you just quit at six o'clock?" And they did and it still worked. There's always work. And in the meantime I was, I canned because I was, my mother canned. I canned everything I grew. I used to grow apricots and peaches. I saved the pit and plant it and three years later you could harvest. So whatever I could can I canned, tomatoes or peaches, apricots, cherries, wherever until the fruit disappeared, and so while my children grew I had, I did a lot of that. I did all the yard work. I did all the yard work for my in-laws.

TI: So you're a hard worker.

LH: Yeah.

<End Segment 23> - Copyright © 2010 Densho. All Rights Reserved.

<Begin Segment 24>

TI: Yeah, I'm thinking back, so it sounds like, in terms of your generation, for the laundry business to end, that proved to be a, in some ways a good thing. People were able to branch out to other things.

LH: Right.

TI: What happened to your husband's father? How was it for him, because this was part of his work also, so what, what did he do?

LH: He just retired. And then my mother-in-law passed away. She was a kind, hard working lady. She never got to go back to Japan, and her sisters were waiting for her, 'cause we had gone back and, and when one of the cousins came to visit, the tears were coming down because he said his mother was waiting for their sister to come home. And then the brother said, "This is the tree she used to climb," and says she got on that horse and buggy and they went to the port. They never saw her again. And we tried to get her there, but it didn't happen. That was the sad part of our lives, not seeing her go back when she could've gone back. And parts of the family said, realized later that she should've gone back, so I always tell my children, you know, if you want to do something good, do it while they're alive. It's not use talking about, "I wish."

TI: How about for you? Is there anything that is still left for you to do, in the same way you say if there's anything that needs to get done do it now? How about for you?

LH: You know, I still wished I'd learned how to ski and dance. [Laughs] I always used to say, in my next life I want to learn how to ski and dance, but I don't think about that anymore, but I did for a long time. But after my husband died, we always, we walked a lot, after we retired we walked every day and we hiked and we traveled a lot, but we, when we walked we always said we did what we wanted to and we were very fortunate and we don't have to say, "I wish we'd done that." We said we did what we wanted to do, as long as the means was there. We didn't do a lot because we didn't have the means, but in the end, because of the way we, we saved and we, the other thing we, I taught my children 'cause they, some of them smoke and most of 'em don't drink, but we said, we don't smoke and we don't drink, so we can use our money for traveling. So we did. We drove by car and we took turns. He trusted my driving, so I'm, I'm a pretty good driver. I'm not afraid to drive anywhere and I still do when I can. I try to tell people, "If you want to do it, do it while you can," especially with people. I, we've stuck by all the people that helped us through the hard times. We had good friends that gave us their children's clothing when we couldn't afford it because we had six children. We had relatives on his mother's side that always gave us their clothes and we had another very dear friend that was my husband's friend from camp. And they did this, the books and toys and clothes, and I always tell my children those are what you call friends, so I stick by, we both did, but I still, I still do what I can for whomever's left.

TI: That's good. So Steve, do you have any final questions?

SF: That's a good ending.

TI: That's an excellent way to end.

LH: And I, I count my blessings every day. Every day, yeah. And I, our time is getting short, so I tell all my friends, and I live at a senior complex now, so I said every minute is precious. Do it.

TI: That's, I think, great advice. Well, Lily, thank you for doing this interview. This was, again, as I mentioned during the break, an excellent interview. I really enjoyed this.

LH: Thank you.

TI: Thank you.

LH: Okay.

SF: Thank you.

<End Segment 24> - Copyright © 2010 Densho. All Rights Reserved.