Gerald Yamada, JAVA President
The U.S. Postal Service has announced that the “Go for Broke: Japanese American Soldiers of WWII” stamp will be unveiled at a virtual ceremony on June 3, 2021. This will be first day of issue and honors the 33,000 Japanese American men and women who served in the U.S. military during World War II. The Stamp Our Story campaign was started in 2005. It has been a long and uphill journey, but it paid off last year when the Postmaster General finally approved the “Go For Broke” stamp. JAVA along with other organizations actively supported this effort over these many years.
With more people being vaccinated, we can now move forward to plan our activities for this year. We postponed JAVA’s annual membership meeting normally scheduled for January. We have set July 24, 2021, as the date for this year’s annual membership meeting. The Harvest Moon restaurant has permanently closed so we have found a new location. This year, we will hold our membership meeting at the Peking Gourmet Inn, 6029 Leesburg Pike, Falls Church, VA starting at 11:30am. We anticipate that the cost will be $30 per person. We have a full agenda. We will ask the membership to approve revisions to JAVA’s by-law to change JAVA’s election procedures. The program will also include announcing JAVA’s scholarship award recipients and winners of JAVA’s awards. We still need to identify a keynote speaker for this event.
Originally, the JAVA evening reception at the newly opened National Museum of the U.S. Army was set for July 15, 2021. The Museum informed us that there likely will still be COVID restrictions in place in July that could limit attendance. To avoid this, we decided to move the date. The new date is Saturday, July 16, 2022. We are arranging for tours of the Museum for JAVA members and friends during the day with an evening reception with a short program.
On March 27th, JAVA participated as a co-sponsor of the "23rd Annual and First Virtual Annual National Cherry Blossom Freedom Walk.” Since the program was virtual, I was asked to lead one of the breakout sessions instead of giving the usual welcoming remarks. My session was entitled “The Memorial and JAVA - Role of the Military in WWII and the Names on the Wall.” We had good participation and interest in the JAVA session.
The annual Memorial Day Service at Arlington National Cemetery will be held on Sunday, May 30th. JAVA will again be a co-sponsor.
We will hold the Day of Affirmation ceremony on July 15, 2021 at 12 noon at the National World War II Memorial which JAVA started last year. The program will again be live streamed via Facebook. This will commemorate the 75th anniversary of President Truman’s salute to the Nisei soldiers as loyal Americans.
JAVA’s annual Veterans Day Program will again be held at the National Japanese American Memorial on November 11 at 2pm.
Thank you for your continued support of JAVA’s activities.