In the Spirit of the One Puka Puka, part II

Author: Ben Tamashiro, D Company
Puka Puka Parades, January-February 1981, v. 35 no.

The 2nd of a two-part interview with Mitsuyoshi Fukuda, Able Chapter; former commander, 100th Infantry Battalion

Toward the close of the first interview, Mits Fukuda talked a bit about the bravery of guys like Young O. Kim; how, for example, he and his group of men would usually be the ones to volunteer to go out and capture some of the enemy whenever there was a need for information on enemy dispositions. Said Mits, “I can’t picture myself volunteering for that kind of job.” And as to what made the 100th the kind of outfit that it was, he credits it partly to the fact that “there was no such thing as shirking, refusing to do it. Why? Because the rest of us were doing it. We were all part of a team. And if we were told to go forward, we’d go forward.” The interview continues..

“But I remember at one point we didn’t go forward. This was at the battle of Cassino, at the Rapido River. We (Companies A and C) were told to attack at midnight. And from eleven to midnight, there was an artillery bombardment on the hillside and town of Cassino. It was spectacular fireworks and the whole hillside was just bursting in flames. Nobody could live through all that. When the bombardment lifted, we advanced through the fields on the flat lands and then got to the river wall. Soon as we got there we were hit by – I don’t know – maybe, hundreds of guns. And we just couldn’t get over the wall. A lot of guys got hit while still crawling through the flat lands. And at the river, at places where the line of fire of the machine guns could not reach, the Germans had those areas mined. So we had to call for mine-sweepers and guys like Calvin Shimogaki helped clear paths so we could go through.

“We got to the wall and we couldn’t move. The wall was about ten feet high, then the river, and another bank we had to go over. So we stayed there. We got orders to go over the bank the next morning and storm the hill. But every time a guy stuck his head out, he’d get hit. I remember Larry Hiraoka getting hit in the eye, just sticking his head out. To me, it was an impossible situation. So we just stayed put. Then the battalion commander sent Baker Company in broad daylight across the flat lands and they got hit. Some of the guys made it to the river wall but they, too, weren’t able to get over the wall.

“Looking back over the flat lands, some of our guys were already wounded. We could hear them moaning. But nobody could go out to rescue them till nightfall.

“I went back to headquarters that night and reported the situation to them but I guess the higher ups in the (34th) division felt we could storm the hill. So they sent Major Jack Johnson with me so he could get to see the actual situation. And while we were crossing the mine field he got hit. Whether he was hit by a machine gun or a mine that had exploded, I’m not sure. We stayed at our position by the wall for two nights, then pulled back.

“So there were occasions when in spite of orders, we were unable to go forward.”

The main battle for Cassino began on the night of January 24, 1944, when the 141st and 143rd Regiments of the 36th (Texas) Division were thrown into the battle. Earlier, the enemy had dammed the Rapido River further up north and diverted its waters into the flat lands, flooding its ditches. The attacking regiments therefore had to not only make their way through torturous mine fields covering every line of approach to the river but also struggle their way through a flooded land. Carrying lightweight boats with them, several companies managed to cross the river. But with daylight, men and equipment on both sides of the river became sitting ducks for enemy tanks and self-propelled guns. After a calamitous two days and nights at the river, the regiments had to withdraw.

(The division lost over 1600 men in the effort, half of them missing. After the war, the 36th Division Association obtained a Congressional Enquiry into the battle with the intent of pinning responsibility for the debacle on 5th Army commander General Mark Clark but he was exonerated.)

(In his book, “The Battle of Cassino,” author Fred Majdalany says of this initial disaster: “The two regimental commanders who bore the burden of this operation could not help themselves. Their thinking had been done for them. They had merely to carry out an extremely difficult assignment, with little scope to influence the proceedings themselves, and it seems clear that their Divisional Staff had committed a number of elemental mistakes in planning the operation. For the Germans it was an easy thing. They knew where the crossing would take place; they knew the lines of approach that were going to be used; they knew when to expect the attack as they could see the final preparations in the assembly areas.”)

Fukuda’s recollection of the 100th dilemma is of an action which took place two days after the 36th nightmare, to the right of the 36th’s position. And the 100th had to slog its way through the same flooded lands and mine fields only be stopped at the river wall by an enemy who long ago had made preparations for protracted stand at Cassino; a battle which lasted four months and ended only with the taking of the Abbey of Monte Cassino on May 8. But the 100th was pulled out during the middle of the battle and left Naples Harbor on March 5 for Anzio.

The tide of change

The experience of war had its profound effects on Mits, as it did on many another returning GI. “Dealing with mature adults for five years soured me on the prospect of dealing with young kids in school so I looked around for another job. Because of my teaching experience I was offered jobs in teaching by Department of Education which I turned down. The VA offered me a training job but I didn’t like its association with teaching so I did not accept it. The Hawaiian Sugar Planters’ Association had decided to expand its public relations program to include a veteran to work with returning veterans but I turned that down.”

“I accepted a job with Castle and Cooke as a personnel relations assistant to the Industrial Relations director” and thereby began his long association with that company. His was a case of continuing upward mobility, all the while staying within the personnel and industrial relations field. And fifteen years ago, he was promoted into his present position as vice president of Industrial Relations. I will retire from that job in a year-and-a-half,” he said.

From carpenter’s son to executive suite

The view from the 2nd story suite of the Castle & Cooke Building in the downtown Financial Plaza takes in the mauka panorama of the city, from Kapalama Heights and Nuuanu Valley to Punchbowl. This is where Mits Fukuda holds sway as vice president of Industrial Relations; certainly a long ways from the environment of the sugar plantation camp of Waialua where he was born 63 years ago, of immigrant parents. His parents had migrated to Hawaii from Kumamoto, Japan, and had settled at Waialua where his father became a carpenter. But the family was forced to move out of Waialua when the Japanese laborers went on strike against the plantation in 1920. The family had to hitch-hike its way into Honolulu, settled in Manoa, then in Moiliili.

But in a sense, Mits has never left Waialua because of the nine Hawaii divisions in the Castle & Cooke domain, one is the Waialua Sugar Company; the others being C&C Inc., Honolulu Office, C&C Terminals, Dole Company, Hawaiian Equipment Company, Hawaiian Tuna Packers, Oahu Transport Company Oceanic Properties, Inc., and Kawaihae Terminals.

Castle & Cooke has other holdings on the mainland and in a number of foreign countries and employees in both the domestic and oversea operations total thirty thousand. As vice president of Industrial Operations, Mits is responsible for their corporate safety, labor relations, employee benefits, and personnel administration in the Honolulu office. One of his key responsibilities is in directing and managing the labor relations program, meaning that “I’m a negotiator for the company; I represent Castle & Cooke and all of its companies in pineapple negotiations, sugar negotiations, waterfront negotiations, and construction industry negotiations; wherever we have contracts with labor unions. We have a lot of operations on the mainland United States and I have a staff up there that deals with mushroom companies, seafood companies, lettuce companies. I’m responsible for the negotiations in all of these areas.”

From conviction to reality

In retrospect, Mits seems to have been made for the job. For instance, the 100th had left Honolulu on June 5, 1942, on its way to where, no one knew at that time. After a week at sea, it landed at Oakland. Recalled Mits (this was in the first installment): “One of the first impressions I got as a local Hawaii man is that in Hawaii most of the working people were either Japanese or Chinese or Filipino and all the white people were supervisors and management people. This is the concept that we had as we grew up. We got to Oakland and we looked at the people working on the waterfront and we saw white faces doing longshore work. This struck me as being different. All through my travels through the United States I was impressed by this difference. And when we returned to Hawaii, my conviction was that the local boys had performed very well overseas and now that we had come back to Hawaii, we should be able to hold our heads high and be assuming managerial and professional positions in Hawaii.”

Then, going further back into his earlier years, he recalls that it was only in his last year at McKinley that he realized that his father wanted him to go to college. Mits then had the notion of going into engineering but it was too late to accumulate the necessary credits in math and science. So he had to settle for an agricultural major, got his degree, but upon graduation from the University of Hawaii discovered that there were no such jobs. So he went back to school for his fifth year and got a teaching certificate in vocational agriculture.

So a loss to engineering seems to have evolved, in retrospect, into a gain for industrial relations with its heavy emphasis upon the variable problems on the human scale, in contrast to engineering’s articulation on the preciseness of form. This highly impersonal conjecture is only meant to suggest that Mits Fukuda’s early steps in life seemed to have led him into the development of a particular feel for the wants of people. Even his choice of a job after the war seemed to have been made, consciously or otherwise, with that thought in mind. He earlier had said that working with men in the army had soured him on the prospect of dealing with kids. He would now be working with mature adults for the rest of his working life.

And in the doing, his progression through the years seems to be a representation of a life come full cycle. The picture: of that little boy of 60 years ago tagging along at the heels of his immigrant parents as they hitch hiked their way out of the white men’s town they were forced to leave; then that first-time glimpse, as he was going off to war, of white men working at the Oakland docks, not as white-collar supervisors but as common every-day variety of laborers… to today, being responsible for the welfare of thousands of workers of various races, including white, from his position as vice president of Industrial Relations in a once all-white corporate bastion of pre-war Hawaii.

Out of this kind of mold often emerge those who consider themselves to be larger than life. Not so in the case of Mits Fukuda. For the portrait is, rather, of one with an immense concern and empathy for the problems of his fellow men.

Out of the crucible of war

But his is not a singular experience, of course, because the war had its impact upon Hawaii as no sociologist, for instance, could have ever dreamed of. “Our growth, the local people, the Japanese people in Hawaii, can be said to have advanced much, much faster because of the performance of the 100th and the 442nd. An example of this, my personal experience is that I came back to civilian life I didn’t have to go into a company to sell myself. All I had to do was to say, ‘I was in the 100th Battalion.’ They knew about the 100th and how it had performed. And this was sufficient for them to say, ‘You must be a good man.’ And I’m sure all the other boys had the same public experience when they applied for a job: They were members of the 100th, therefore they were deserving of consideration for a job. “However, many of the boys took advantage of the educational benefits given by the Veterans Administration. Many of the boys didn’t want to go back to the same laboring type jobs they had; they wanted to upgrade themselves. So they went back to school. Even school teachers like me, they didn’t want to go back to teaching again. And so we would look for other jobs. Jack Mizuha was a school principal; he went back to school and got a law degree. Sakae Takahashi had a school teaching certificate; he didn’t want to go back to teaching so he went to law school and became a lawyer. And so on. And any number of instances where a guy wanted to do something different; go back to school or into another field where he thought the opportunities would be greater. And opportunities were greater because of the l00th and the 442nd. I think their reputation was such that people in the community automatically accepted us as being an okay guy just because we were part of the l00th. “Guys went into politics and the fact that you were a veteran, a member of the l00th or 442nd helped in getting you elected, in getting promoted, getting into position. I would say that, overall, there was a hastening of the political, economic, social level of the Japanese people in Hawaii because of the war, because of the performance of the l00th and the 442nd in the war. I guess all of these things would have happened without the war but I think it would have been a slow process – to overcome all these obstacles of being of immigrant parents, not being educated, not having the cultural background.”

Random recollections

A frustration which dogged Mits for a while began early in the training days at McCoy. It concerned a cook with Company D. “I had difficulty communicating with him because the guy persisted in speaking only Japanese; he made no attempt to speak English. He had been a fisherman on Maui.” When the pre-war draft netted him into the army, there was no way the army was going to change his fisherman ways: a loud and raucous voice often giving way to the singing of naniwabushi while working or taking a break in the latrine, a lover of drinks, a fantastic crap shooter who kept his greenbacks rolled up and tied to a string which in turn was tied to a belt loop on his trousers. On weekends when cooks had little to do in camp, he ritualistically would head for the brothels in Winona. Oversea, when units were short of men and ammunition, cooks were often pressed into ammo carrying duties. So it was that near Cassino, the cook found himself doing just that. One early evening, a lone enemy tank wandered into the wooded company bivouac area and began firing random shots. Little damage was done, however to men or equipment. But in a most iniquitous manner in which a soldier could have ever been accorded the Purple Heart, a wayward shrapnel somehow sneaked its way through the trees to the cook, lodged itself between his legs and in an action fit only for the wrath of gods neatly sliced off one of his two reproductive genitals. It was a fate that could not have been wished even upon the worst of enemies; for him whose life had been centered around the blondes of Winona, as ironic a circumstance as could ever have been contrived by the wildest of imaginations. Whatever, scratch one frustration.

Mits recalls another guy, Tadao Seo (Able Company) who also spoke much Japanese but he had no problem communicating with him. Which makes Mits wonder whether the cook was only playing games with him.

The Louisiana Maneuvers gave cause for another tale of frustration. Mits was then in Charlie Company. The company was leading the battalion on a night march and the lead platoon had difficulty finding the cut-off road leading back to camp. It eventually did find it but as it turned out, it was the wrong one, so the whole battalion ended up marching an extra couple of miles before reaching camp late at night. The men of Charlie vented their anger at Mits for letting the thing happen. “I’m sure the rest of the battalion was mad at me, too!” declared Mits. In confirmation, he was called to Colonel Turner’s camp headquarters the next day and presented with a large hand-made cardboard compass.

Of Turner, Mits considers him the right man for the right job. “He had a good feel for the local boys; he was one of them,” said Mits. Years older than his men, he presented a much needed fatherly image to the boys. “And when he returned early from the war to Hawaii, he was the right spokesman for the group.”

Another man highly regarded by Mits is Jim Lovell. “He never said much. But like Turner, he had a feel for the boys. He was an outstanding officer,” said Mits.

Harking back again to his early days with Dog Company, there was the time when Sadashi Matsunami and Mahut Kondo went on pass and got into a fight with some 2nd Division guys. Matsunami had a cut over one eye to show for his night on the town. Mits was tempted to discipline them with some form of company punishment but he let them off with a lecture about how good soldiers do not get into fights. Mits laughed, because in the after-thought: “The lecture must have done as much good as pouring water over a duck’s back.”

But on another occasion when Mahut overstayed his pass – and this was about par for him! – Mits had Mahut march up and down the company street with a rifle on his shoulder and a full-field pack on his back.

Mits characterized the two as “Nice guys – but always getting into trouble.” Both are fast friends of Mits today.

Oversea, in southern France where the 100th was in its “Riviera holiday” period, Mits found himself one day in a quandary having to pass judgement on his own men in a serious infraction of regulations. Cream Hiramoto and Johnny Miyagawa, Charlie Company, found themselves stalled at the top of a hill, in a Jeep. They rolled the Jeep down the hill in an effort to get it started but unfortunately, it kept right on rolling, and into out-of- bounds Monaco territory. “At least that was their story,” said Mits. The MPs picked up the two in Monaco and recommended courts-martial. But Mits spared them the courts-martial after listening to their tale of woe. A smile lighted his face as he recalled the incident.

But there was no smile that day at the Moiliili Japanese School when the school bully took a football away from Mits. Mits and his friends in the 6th (or 7th) grade were playing football when this bully, in the 8th grade, came along and busted up the game. The guy was much huskier and bigger than the others so there was not much they could do about it. Subsequently when the 1OOth was formed, there was this bully, one Fundee Shirai by name, in Baker Company. The two became good friends.

At McKinley, Mits was not considered by his teachers to be of college material. He was shy, his grades were not outstanding, he was no speechmaker. Which was probably all the more reason why at the university he took to professors who, beside teaching, involved themselves in students’ affairs. Sociology professor Bernhard Hormann was one of these. He played volley ball, for instance, with his students, and invited them to his home. Mits rates him as exceptional.

Then there was Dr. Haley Work, professor of animal husbandry. Mits was president of the Ag Club and Dr. Work its advisor, and the two used to work together on club projects. Dr. Work passed through Honolulu five years ago and many of his former students got together and held a reception for him. To Mits, “It was heartwarming to find so many of his former students, now 60-year-olds, taking time off to attend the reception.” Lastly, Mits spoke of Alexander Budge, past president and chairman of the board of Castle & Cooke, who passed away two months ago at age 89. Alex, as many of his friends were wont to call him – but to Mits he was always “Mr. Budge” – used to poke his head into Mits’ office in the morning and greet him with a, “Hi! Mits!” “He was not outgoing,” said Mits. “In fact he was an introvert. But he dealt with people on a personal basis and expressed great concern for people like me. He was a great man.”

If anything, what comes through in these vignettes is a picture of one who himself had a feel for others; appreciated their concern for him even as he himself always kept them in mind.

Heroes of a whole generation

This interview with Mits Fukuda was conducted jointly by Eric Saul and the writer (the writer is solely responsible for the narrative). Let me tell you a bit about Eric.

The monthly bulletins, to all members, for December and January (this is being written long before the appearance of the February bulletin) have included bits of information concerning the “Go For Broke” exhibit being sponsored by the Presidio Army Museum in San Francisco. It is the second largest museum in the United States. The exhibit is the first major exhibit on the history of the Nisei soldiers in WW II and is centered around the 100th and the 442nd. It will include photographs, uniforms, standards, weapons and artifacts. And a book highlighting all of this is being published; details of the book noted in the January bulletin.

The exhibit is scheduled to open at the Presidio on March 7 and be there for a year. It will then come to Hawaii for a stay, then go on national tour. After that, those things that are ours, or are more germane to Hawaii, will come to us – the 1OOth and 442nd clubs – for safekeeping and preservation.

Eric Saul is the curator of the Presidio Museum. Project coordinator is Tom Kawaguchi, a veteran of the 442nd. They were here recently to pick up additional materials for the exhibit and conduct interviews with club members in order to obtain a broader comprehension and understanding of the wartime role of the 1OOth.

Then there is Donald Shearer, a German Army expert who is acting as special consultant to the exhibit. A separate article on Shearer and outlines of his initial findings appear in another section of this issue. Said Eric to Mits during the interview: “When I started this (museum) exhibit, I knew that you were the most decorated unit in the history of the army. But I didn’t know that you were quite the heroes of the Nisei generation: visible, tangible, walking heroes of a whole generation.

“I wasn’t aware of it until I went to Japan along with Tom (Kawaguchi) and saw the restaurant owners and the kids and everybody else – who venerate these men. Are you aware of that in Hawaii?”

The Japanese connection

Japan? Perhaps what needs to be understood at this point is that the telling of history, in whatever form – accounts of a battle, a biography or autobiography, a novel, music or poetry, the tape recordings of oral history, whatever – is a study of the human past and is often written not so much for the present as for future generations.

The majority of us are content to simply live out our lives. A few live with an eye for history. Winston Churchill was one of these. In 1941, Britain was fighting for her life: with the fall of France a year earlier, she was left without an ally in Western Europe; London lay in ruins from the nightly air raids; Rommel’s tanks were grappling for the British jugular in the Libyan Desert; her lifeline to America was being threatened by the U-boat wolf packs. The empire was reeling.

But to the indomitable Churchill, these were Britain’s greatest moments. His addresses to the nation are reflections of the history of the human spirit, as in the following which he delivered in October of that year: “Do not let us speak of darker days; let us rather speak of sterner days. These are not dark days: they are great days – the greatest days our country has ever lived; and we must all thank God that we have been allowed, each of us according to our stations, to play a part in making these days memorable in the history of our race.”

Some people make history: the men of the 100th had their share of memorable days. Others write about it, and one who does is Hokkaido-born Masayo Duus. She wrote the first book ever published on the famous (infamous?) Tokyo Rose, “Tokyo Rose – Orphan of the Pacific.” It was written in Japanese, then translated into English by her husband, Peter Duus, a professor of modern Japanese history and director of the Center for East Asian Studies at Stanford University.

She was here last year gathering material for a book she’s writing about the Nisei and their part in WW II. Many in the 100th were interviewed by her, including Mits Fukuda. In the process she had touched upon the very question asked by Eric. Mits himself has never been to Japan but “I’ve got an indication of what’s going on in Japan,” he replied to Eric. “She indicated to me that there is a growing interest on the part of the young people there; that they are no longer worried about their image or their reputations; they are now interested in looking at the factual history of World War II. And they are willing to look at the 100th and the 442nd from an objective viewpoint.” This is something that most of us are probably unaware of.

But as to the situation at home, Mits remarked to Eric that “many of the Sansei kids don’t even remember that there was such a thing as the 100th and the 442nd.”

With a sense of pride

On the other hand, continued Mits, “Even today, in Hawaii, when I get introduced to people I don’t know, one of the references is that ‘he was a member of the 100th Infantry Battalion.’ And it is said with almost a matter of pride.” For those who lived in Hawaii during the days of WW II and for others who have heard about the 100th, the reference to the 100th normally has the effect of quickly establishing a bond tinged with respect and pride.

Speaking of that kind of rapport, Eric noted that “There’s no precedent like that, in my experience in dealing with veterans, of all wars; that kind of reverence. Which makes my project all the more interesting.” He went on to explain that he has attended many unit reunions and “People hardly know each other at these affairs. Their only common bond is the unit. There isn’t the closeness.” Which is another way of saying that the 100th was the beneficiary of an exception to army policy.

The army assigns men to wherever, whatever units, based on need. Another reason for this policy of fragmentation is to avoid the specter of a whole town in grief over a unit wiped out in battle, all of its sons being in that one unit (a situation which conceivably could have happened to the 100th).

But when the 100th went off to war, the army kept the men from Hawaii together; not out of choice, but because of no choice – inasmuch as it had to keep a particular eye on the performance of these men in whom ran the bloodline of the perpetrators of Pearl Harbor. So it was that under the exigencies of war, the men of the 100th who had grown up and labored and lived together were further able to develop a new kind of esprit in the comforting presence of each other; an ascription which was to be a key element in the combat effectiveness of the 100th.

Interesting, then, the recent news item from the army that hereafter, men from a locale will be kept together as a unit.

To be or not to be

Returning to Mits’ observation that many of the Sansei are rather oblivious of the existence of the 100th and the 442nd, it is paradoxical, indeed, but not uncommon, that those closest to home should care the least. But the Sansei shouldn’t be faulted too much for the seeming lack of interest in our war. They had, after all, their own – the Vietnam War.

And on that score, asked whether the combat record of the Nisei in WW II had any kind of influence upon their offsprings in things military, Mits replied, “I don’t know,” but then cited his son David as but one example of what had been.

David, Fukuda’s eldest son, had attended Griffin College in Wisconsin and one of the reasons he had gone there was because the school had a good ROTC program. Upon graduation from the advanced ROTC program there, he was sent to Ft. Benning’s officer school and there on to an intelligence school in Baltimore, then shipped out to a divisional intelligence unit in Vietnam.

“At that point,” said Mits, “he wrote me a very touching letter, apologizing that he wasn’t following in my footsteps and going into the infantry. He was concerned that I would not be as proud of him because he had chosen a service other than the infantry.

“Well, the fact of the matter is that the guy was an observer in a 2-seater single engine Piper Cub, going up every day observing the Vietnam lines. And I can’t think of any more dangerous mission than to go up every day on this single-engined plane. You’re a pigeon up there! For any kind of weapon, including a rifle! And to think that he would apologize for not being in the infantry! I thought it was kind of…” His voice trailed off.

The Vietnam War period was a time of riotings, draft protests and draft card burnings: rejoinders to an unpopular war whose left-over emotions linger and continue to spill over into succeeding decades (as it did during last summer’s registration of the nation’s 4 million 19- and 20-year-olds). But inasmuch as David had chosen to enter ROTC, the tide of dissension and discontent passed him by. Instead, he wound up being an open target for enemy fire. Some day when we meet up with him, we shall ask him how come the choice and hope that his answer will be more illuminating than his dad’s “I don’t know.”

David is now working on Maui with the Maui Branch of Honolulu Roofing Company. Mits’ second son, Patrick, is in Seattle engaged in the development of commercial real estate while the third, Richard, is assistant cashier in the Bank of Hawaii here in town. The youngest, Jean, is in Columbia Law School and will be graduating this May. Mits’ father died while he was in college and his mother passed away two years ago at the age of 83.

Remembrance of things past

There are few I-don’t-knows in Fukuda’s vision of how the 100th should be remembered. Speaking in his role as chairman of the club’s Long Range Planning Committee, he said that he has three goals in mind.

“Number One. There should be a public recognition. My idea is that the state or the federal government should put up a building, a memorial, which will recognize the contribution of veterans to the State of Hawaii. And when we talk about veterans, we are talking about the 100th, 442nd, National Guard, Military Intelligence, Engineers – all equally remembered. A memorial stadium or building of some kind, with certain parts of the building set aside for a museum or exhibit so that we will have the battalion flag and battalion history, a marble plaque with all the KIAs listed on it – but the building itself could be for some governmental purpose. For example, for World War I, there is the Natatorium. Something of that order.

“Number Two. I think we should have a living memorial so that the people in Hawaii would have something ongoing which would recall for them the name of the 100th. A chair at the University of Hawaii, a scholarship fund for the dependents of the 100th, a special room at the Academy of Arts – something along that line.

“The third is a short- term objective of providing benefits to the 100th members for the rest of their lives. I initially thought of medical benefits or old-age care benefits for members plus spouses at a place like Kuakini Hospital. We initially had IRS problems with that proposal but I think they have been pretty well cleaned up and we can proceed with the project. However, medical and old-age care may not be of most benefit to the members so we have to look at some other benefits which can be tied in to this particular objective. In doing that we thought that we need to make a contribution of our assets to a place like Kuakini Hospital so that non-profit organizations performing a community service should be the beneficiary of our assets.

“These are ideas and the long range planning committee will have to sit down and hammer out the details.” Although the sound of this narrative may convey the impression, it is not in any way intended to set up Mits as a paragon. On the other hand, we can expect to hear a lot more from this carpenter’s son in whom we have entrusted the task of hammering out the form by which it is hoped that the 100th will be remembered long after the last of us has died and gone, for as much an anyone else in the club, his heartbeat is geared to the remembrance of the men of the 100th Infantry Battalion – their deeds, even their misdeeds.