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RIP Yuri Kochiyama

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Printed Date: Jul 08 2020 at 9:36pm

Topic: RIP Yuri Kochiyama
Posted By: Alias_Avi
Subject: RIP Yuri Kochiyama
Date Posted: Jun 03 2014 at 12:37am
This was the 3rd one Cry

Yuri Kochiyama, Activist And Former World War II Internee, Dies At 93

Japanese-American activist Yuri Kochiyama has died of natural causes in Berkeley, Calif., at age 93. The lifelong champion of civil rights causes in the black, Latino, Native American and Asian-American communities died peacefully in her sleep Sunday morning, according to her family.

Born in 1921 as Mary Yuriko Nakahara, Kochiyama spent the early years of her life in San Pedro, Calif., a small town south of Los Angeles. Months after the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor, she and her family were forced to relocate to internment camps along with tens of thousands of other Japanese-Americans. She met her late husband, Bill Kochiyama, who served with other Japanese-American soldiers in the 442nd Regimental Combat Team, at the Jerome Relocation Center in Arkansas, where she spent two years.

The couple married after World War II and moved to start their family in New York City. Living in housing projects among black and Puerto Rican neighbors inspired her interest in the civil rights movement. Kochiyama held weekly open houses for activists in the family's apartment, where she taped newspaper clippings to the walls and kept piles of leaflets on the kitchen table. "Our house felt like it was the movement 24/7," said her eldest daughter, Audee Kochiyama-Holman.

Her brief but formative friendship with Malcolm X, whom she first met in 1963, helped radicalize her activism. Kochiyama began focusing her work on black nationalism and was with Malcolm X during his final moments. Minutes after gunmen fired at Malcolm X in 1965 during his last speech in New York City, she rushed toward him and cradled his head on her lap. A black-and-white photo in Life magazine shows Kochiyama peering worriedly through horn-rimmed glasses at Malcolm X's bullet-riddled body.

In the 1980s, she and her husband pushed for reparations and a formal government apology for Japanese-American internees through the Civil Liberties Act, which President Ronald Reagan signed into law in 1988. Her continued dedication to social causes inspired younger generations of activists, especially within the Asian-American community.

"She was not your typical Japanese-American person, especially a nisei," or a second-generation Japanese-American, said Tim Toyama, Kochiyama's second cousin, who wrote a one-act play about her relationship with Malcolm X.

"She was definitely ahead of her time, and we caught up with her."" rel="nofollow">" rel="nofollow">" rel="nofollow">" rel="nofollow">" rel="nofollow">" rel="nofollow">

Posted By: femmefatale85
Date Posted: Jun 03 2014 at 12:42am
i need to read about her


Posted By: maysay1
Date Posted: Jun 03 2014 at 12:45am
I like to see good people die in old age.

I'm sure she will be missed.

Posted By: DiorShowGirl
Date Posted: Jun 03 2014 at 1:06am
Originally posted by femmefatale85 femmefatale85 wrote:

i need to read about her


Posted By: Mixer
Date Posted: Jun 03 2014 at 1:15am
Originally posted by DiorShowGirl DiorShowGirl wrote:

Originally posted by femmefatale85 femmefatale85 wrote:

i need to read about her


Posted By: Lilaca
Date Posted: Jun 03 2014 at 1:26am
Originally posted by femmefatale85 femmefatale85 wrote:

i need to read about her

ia,More people like her should be posted on BHM

Posted By: Midna
Date Posted: Jun 03 2014 at 4:31am
More people like her should be in our history books!

Posted By: newdiva1
Date Posted: Jun 03 2014 at 4:35am
Originally posted by femmefatale85 femmefatale85 wrote:

i need to read about her


This.  i'm ashamed to say i've never heard of her.

Posted By: Az~Maverick
Date Posted: Jun 03 2014 at 5:42am
Oh wow! May she RIP Cry

Posted By: afrokock
Date Posted: Jun 03 2014 at 5:56am

Posted By: iliveforbhm
Date Posted: Jun 03 2014 at 6:28am
Wow, never heard of her. She this is why history needs to be revised so badly! We learn about villains and despots as good guys and we don't hear the real heroes until later.

Posted By: OoDles O
Date Posted: Jun 03 2014 at 11:15am
theres a nice video of her on Democracy Now where she talks about how her family was placed in a detention camp and she talks about her relationship with Malcolm X.

here is the link:" rel="nofollow -

Posted By: AmiliaCabral
Date Posted: Jun 03 2014 at 11:31am
I've never heard of her but she sounds like she was an amazing woman.
R.I.P. Hope her legacy and impact will live forever.

Posted By: Alias_Avi
Date Posted: Jun 03 2014 at 11:34am
Thanks Oodles... I found some of it on Youtube

Posted By: SoutherNtellect
Date Posted: Jun 03 2014 at 11:37am
The name didn't hit me at first but as soon as I saw that first pic I knew who she was


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