Friday, July 8, 2011
by: Kiyo Sato
I am doing the summer library reading program. They give you a bingo sheet with various things to do through the summer. Each time you get a bingo you turn it in and get put into a drawing. One of the bingo squares is to read a biography.
My family went to the County Fair this year and I ran across a table about writing. Kiyo was there with her book. I barely met her, had not heard of the book before but I took a flier that day.
When I saw my bingo card I figured I would read her book!
This story is about Kiyo's family. How her father came to America from Japan, how he married her mother and settled in Sacramento, of all places! It's so funny to hear her write about driving down Franklin Blvd. when it was nothing but country!
Her father worked on farms when he moved here and then was finally able to owned his own farm growing Strawberry's. She tells stories about their family growing up. Kiyo was the oldest of 9 children! In Dec. 1941 Japan bombed Pearl Harbor and life changed for the Sato family. Kiyo was in College at this time but those who used to call them friends would no longer talk to her family. They were searched by the military and many husbands were taken away because they were suspected of being enemy traitors.
Only months later they had to evacuate their home to a "relocation camp" (not to be called a concentration camp). She tells of her story of packing, taking 9 children on a train and ending up in the heat of the summer in AZ! (I can not imagine!)
A few months later Kiyo is the first in the concentration camp to be released to go to College and is sent to Michigan where for the first time she is away from her family. Years later her family is also allowed to move to Colorado work a sugar beet farm.
This story is Kiyo's first book that she has every written and I believe it is one worth reading. I truly love hearing about people's journeys in life. Kiyo always mentions a saying her mother would always say; "Moh sukoshi gaman o shite" Persevere a bit longer. This story is about true perseverance of the Sato family to survive and prosper in America.
I wish I had read this book so that I could have spoken with Kiyo Sato at the County Fair, I will try again next year! You will have to read it to find out what happen's to the Sato family! Enjoy!