GARDENA, CA — On March 17, the Manzanar Committee honored former Manzanar incarceree Hank Umemoto, author of the new book, Manzanar To Mount Whitney: The Life and Times of a Lost Hiker, at a book signing party in Gardena, California.
Umemoto, who was born in 1928, grew up in Florin, California, near Sacramento. At the age of 14, he was sent to Manzanar in California’s Owens Valley, one of ten American concentration camps where over 120,000 Americans of Japanese ancestry were unjustly incarcerated during World War II.
After Manzanar, Umemoto struggled, to say the least, spending over three years on the streets of Skid Row. But he endured, finishing high school, and attending Los Angeles City College before serving with the 38th Military Intelligence Service during the Korean War.
Upon his return from Korea, Umemoto attended California State University, Los Angeles, married, raised a family, and eventually ran a print shop for 32 years.
In Manzanar To Mount Whitney, Umemoto shared memories of his childhood, his time behind the barbed wire at Manzanar, and his life after camp.
For information on the book, contact Heyday Books at (510) 549-3564, or visit their web site, http://www.heydaybooks.com.
LEAD PHOTO: Former Manzanar incarceree and author of the new book, Manzanar To Mount Whitney: The Life and Times of a Lost Hiker, Hank Umemoto, shown here with daughters Jasmine Grace (left) and Michelle Nakamura (right), was honored by the Manzanar Committee on March 17, 2013, in Gardena, California. Photo: Gann Matsuda/Manzanar Committee
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