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Thread: Japanese Razor Returns Home From Iwo Jima!

  1. #31
    Some kind of Zombie BigJim's Avatar
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    So glad to see this come together. What an amazing story. Good on you Roy for the part you played.

    Jim

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    Senior Member Baxxer's Avatar
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    I had forgotten about this thread, good to hear that it made it all the way back.
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  3. #33
    'with that said' cudarunner's Avatar
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    Default Picture from Japanese Newspaper of The Razor Found on Iwo Jima Being Returned

    Hi All!

    The Vice Principle of Yamate High School (recently promoted to Principle) was instrumental in getting the pictures that the chaperones had taken at Owens home of the razor and hone found on Iwo Jima to the Japanese Government who helped find the son of the deceased solider. I contacted him and he kindly sent pdf pictures from a Japanese newspaper that the deceased soldier's son had sent him. The only problem was that they were sideways and I couldn't figure out how to change them let alone make them into something that I could post!

    OZ TO THE RESCUE!:

    Now if only the Japanese born and raised woman that I work with can take the time to translate what is written! She can easily read Japanese but struggles with translating it into English!

    Any help out there! I do have larger copies so that the writing can be easier to read.

    Here's the articles;
    Name:  Owen Returning Iwo Razor.jpg
Views: 273
Size:  54.8 KB
    Our house is as Neil left it- an Aladdin’s cave of ‘stuff’
    Kim x

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  5. #34
    Senior Member Dzanda's Avatar
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    Default OUTSTANDING!

    What a wonderful gesture; well done!



    Back when I was stationed on Okinawa, I was part of a team that recovered remains and artifacts from the horrendous Battle of Okinawa. Although it didn't happen very often, we all looked forward to those occasions when we could return an artifact...or remains...to a Japanese family (we rarely encountered American artifacts or remains). The families were extremely appreciative, and the gesture engendered lots of good will! So I really understand that this was truly a big deal for all the involved parties.

  6. #35
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    Quote Originally Posted by cudarunner View Post
    Here's the articles;
    Name:  Owen Returning Iwo Razor.jpg
Views: 273
Size:  54.8 KB
    My Japanese reading level isn't good enough to do a full translation of the two articles, but the headlines are easy enough. The one on the left says, "Father's razor - To the son 69 years later", and the one on the right says, "From Iwo-jima, Father's razor".
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  8. #36
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    Thanks for sharing this incredible story! I work as a professional translator on the side. If you could give me a clearer photo of the newspaper article, I'll gladly translate it (at no cost, of course).
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  10. #37
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    I've translated the first page of the article (see photo below for reference). I'll post my translation of the next page later on.

    Name:  Owen1.0.png
Views: 102
Size:  405.9 KB

    Large horizontal caption: Father’s razor to his son after 69 years

    Middle, vertical caption: Joint Japanese-American memorial ceremony in Iwo Jima

    Photo: Owen Agenbroad, a former U.S. soldier, returns the razor he brought back from Iwo Jima 69 years ago to Yoshikazu Higuchi (right), who is family of the deceased. (On the 19th, in Ogasawara, Tokyo)*

    Body Text:
    A joint ceremony was held on the 19th at Iwo Jima (Ogasawara, Tokyo) to memorialize both the Japanese and Americans who had fallen in combat at Iwo Jima, where a fierce battle took place between the Japanese and American militaries near the end of the Pacific War. About 270 family members of the deceased and political figures renewed the vow for peace.

    An organization of the surviving families, the “Iwo Jima Association”, was formed in 1995. At the memorial, Tetsuro Teramoto#―the head of the organization―said, “Such a tragic battle must never happen again. For a more secure peace, I pray for the strengthening of the bond of friendship between Japan and the U.S.”

    Before the ceremony, Owen Agenbroad, 91, a former U.S. soldier who survived the Battle of Iwo Jima, returned a Japanese soldier’s razor that he found during the battle to the soldier’s surviving family. Upon receiving his deceased father’s article after 69 years, Yoshikazu Higuchi, 74, of Soeda, Fukuoka Prefecture, said with deep emotion, “My memories of my father came back to life a little. I’m truly thankful.”

    21,900 Japanese and 6,800 American lives were lost in battle on the island. Recovery of the remains of Japanese soldiers is still ongoing.

    *Note: Iwo Jima is actually part of Tokyo, even though it’s 750 miles (1,200 km) away.
    #More on Mr. Teramoto and his organization

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  12. #38
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    I've finally finished the translation of the other article. I also translated another article that hasn't appeared on this forum. I hope you enjoy the stories.

    2nd Article



    Middle, vertical caption: Father’s razor from Iwo Jima

    Middle, horizontal caption: Safeguarded by a former American solider, to the family in Fukuoka

    Photos: (Above) Yoshikazu Higuchi holds the razor his father had left behind (Below) Razor case marked with the former owner’s name

    Body Text:
    A well-used razor left behind by Mitsuru Higuchi, who passed away at 32-years-old, was returned to his son—Yoshikazu, 74, of Soeda, Fukuoka Prefecture—after 69 years. The articles left behind by the deceased were presented at a memorial held on the 30th in Sasaguri, Fukuoka Prefecture. The Fukuoka Prefecture branch of the “Iwo Jima Association”, an organization of the surviving families, organized the memorial. With powerful emotion, Mr. Higuchi said, “His remains never came back, but being able to hold something he loved in my hands . . . ”

    Mitsuru went to the front in October of 1943. He was dispatched to Iwo Jima in July of 1944, but he died from illness in January of the following year. Mr. Owen Agenbroad, a former American soldier who had been dispatched to Iwo Jima, brought home Mitsuru’s razor and the accompanying case bearing Mitsuru’s name, carefully keeping them safe. He had recently been searching for Mitsuru’s relatives in order to return the articles. Mr. Higuchi and Mr. Agenbroad attended a joint Japanese-American memorial ceremony in Iwo Jima, where Mr. Agenbroad returned the items in person.

    “At the joint memorial ceremony, it was emotionally complicated to be together with the men who had fought against my father. However, my resolve that we should never go to war again grew stronger,” said Mr. Higuchi.

    Many units from Fukuoka Prefecture were dispatched to Iwo Jima, and approximately one-fourth of the roughly 950 members of the Iwo Jima Association members have ties to Fukuoka Prefecture. (Reporter: Kan Iwao)

    (3/31, Newspaper: Nishinippon Shimbun)


    3rd Article



    Large, vertical caption: 69th Memorial of Iwo Jima, A Fierce Japanese–American Battleground

    Body Text:
    The 15th Joint Japanese–American Memorial was held on March 19th at Iwo Jima (Ogasawara, Tokyo), a fierce battleground of the Pacific War. Over 270 people were in attendance, including former soldiers from both sides, their relatives, and political figures. 21,570 Japanese soldiers and 6,821 American soldiers lost their lives in combat on the island.

    “In 1985, forty years after the war, former soldiers of the ‘Iwo Jima associations’ of each country visited the island to cooperate in raising a monument, and the annual memorial was the result of an agreement reached during this reunion. It started in 1995 when, transcending love and hate, they agreed to ‘reunite once a year on the island,’” explained a Ministry of Defense representative. From Japan, in attendance were Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s biological younger brother* and Senior Vice-Minister for Foreign Affairs, Nobuo Kishi, 54, and Ground Self-Defense Force Chief of Staff, Kiyofumi Iwata. On the American side, in attendance were Commandant Amos of the Marine Corps, retired Marine Corps commissioned officers, and State Department officials.

    On the day of the memorial, a 93-year-old former soldier returned articles left behind by a Japanese soldier to his family. Reflecting on having attentively watched the scene in front of his eyes, former Parliamentary Vice-Minister of Defense and current Liberal Democratic Party House of Councillors member, Masahisa Sato, 53, whose career began in the Ground Self-Defense Force, said, “Ceremonies like this are taking place all over the world. However, surely this is the only event attended by the governments of two countries that had previously been at war with each other as well as the families of former soldiers and former soldiers themselves, who actually fought against one another. That alone has also been thought-provoking for me.”

    It has been 69 years since the honorable deaths of those who were part of the garrison at Iwo Jima.# Time has passed and the alliance between Japan and the U.S. has been reported to be under strain recently. Nevertheless, a deep bond has been forming at the site of the security guarantee. (Photography: Hitoshi Maeshiro)

    Photo below body text: Returning the articles of the deceased after over half a century

    Top photo (opposite page): Commissioned officers of the Self-Defense Force solemnly bow

    Bottom photo (opposite page): Former American soldiers make an offering of flowers

    (Newspaper: Shukan Shincho)

    Translator’s note: There are cultural cues that might be overlooked by, or at least seem odd to, those unfamiliar with Japan, but that no Japanese would misunderstand. See below for explanations.

    *: Biological kinship is important in Japan, and since Nobuo Kishi’s last name differs from that of Shinzo Abe (Kishi was raised by his maternal grandparents, hence the different surname), the newspaper felt obliged to report that they’re biological siblings in order to prevent speculation or the appearance of a veiled attempt at libel.

    #: Notice that the Japanese soldiers who survived the Battle of Iwo Jima get no mention here. During the war, and to a lesser extent afterwards, those who did not fight to the death were branded as cowards and a painful sight for the bereaved families.
    Last edited by vileru; 07-09-2016 at 04:01 AM. Reason: Changed to high res photos

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  14. #39
    'with that said' cudarunner's Avatar
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    I can't thank vileru enough for translating the newspaper articles about Owen returning the razor to the man's son. Owen has seen this thread and he's very pleased.

    I've copied the last few pages that contain the translations and had Staples print them on high gloss and then laminate them. I'll be taking the laminated copies to Owen in a day or so.

    I also kept copies for myself so that my family can see the selfless act that aging veteran did; a veteran who helped mold me into the person I am today.
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  15. #40
    'with that said' cudarunner's Avatar
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    Owen Agenbroad passed away on October 13th 2016. I posted of his passing at the Hall of Remembrance;

    Owen Darst Agenbroad: Born; 06/30/1923 Died;10/13/2016
    Our house is as Neil left it- an Aladdin’s cave of ‘stuff’
    Kim x

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