Yeiji Inouye, interviewed by Kyla Fitzgerald, 17 July 2015

Yeiji Inouye, interviewed by Kyla Fitzgerald, 17 July 2015

Abstract
Yeiji Inouye is a nisei born in North Vancouver and describes how him and his family moved many times in his early life as his father was in logging and had to follow available work. Yeiji lists the places that they moved around to during his prewar childhood as State Falls, Coquitlam, Hammond, Haney, to Vancouver. While in Hammond, they were near his uncle's family and he went to school there away from home. His mother had returned to Japan for 6 months to study Japanese dressmaking and returned to open a business in Haney then moved to Kitsilano. Yeiji was attending Vancouver Technical School and it was while in Vancouver when the family was forcibly uprooted and split to Greenwood and Ti-Jean. His father had been sent to the road camp at Ti-Jean and by request to the Commission, Yeiji was sent to work there with him while his mother, younger brother and sister were sent to Greenwood. Yeiji and his father were moved to New Denver to build the shacks in preparation for Japanese Canadians from Hastings Park.
Yeiji was able to finish his technical schooling and became a draftsman. He later joined the navy in 1948, leading to a twenty five and a half years career in the navy. He details his previous attempt at applying for the RCMP a year earlier, getting accepted into the navy, his training, and being shipped to Korea in '52 on the HMCS Crusader. Yeiji discusses the positives to spreading the Japanese Canadian community and adopting a Canadian lifestyle although marks the importance in passing on the language. He describes his experiences in Japan, first while stationed in Korea to visit a cousin, then later had spent 3 years stationed at the Canadian Embassy in Japan. Yeiji struggled with being a Japanese who could understand the language but had lost much of his ability to speak the language since learning as a young man.
Yeiji briefly describes bringing clothing and omiyage that couldn't be found in Ti-Jean with him when leaving for the road camp there. His sister Ritsuko Sarah Inouye was heavily involved with the Toronto chapter of the NAJC and later the Redress movement. He shares much of his personal photographs, saved newspaper clippings and articles with Kyla.
No transcription available.

Metadata

Title

Yeiji Inouye, interviewed by Kyla Fitzgerald, 17 July 2015

Abstract

Yeiji Inouye is a nisei born in North Vancouver and describes how him and his family moved many times in his early life as his father was in logging and had to follow available work. Yeiji lists the places that they moved around to during his prewar childhood as State Falls, Coquitlam, Hammond, Haney, to Vancouver. While in Hammond, they were near his uncle's family and he went to school there away from home. His mother had returned to Japan for 6 months to study Japanese dressmaking and returned to open a business in Haney then moved to Kitsilano. Yeiji was attending Vancouver Technical School and it was while in Vancouver when the family was forcibly uprooted and split to Greenwood and Ti-Jean. His father had been sent to the road camp at Ti-Jean and by request to the Commission, Yeiji was sent to work there with him while his mother, younger brother and sister were sent to Greenwood. Yeiji and his father were moved to New Denver to build the shacks in preparation for Japanese Canadians from Hastings Park.
Yeiji was able to finish his technical schooling and became a draftsman. He later joined the navy in 1948, leading to a twenty five and a half years career in the navy. He details his previous attempt at applying for the RCMP a year earlier, getting accepted into the navy, his training, and being shipped to Korea in '52 on the HMCS Crusader. Yeiji discusses the positives to spreading the Japanese Canadian community and adopting a Canadian lifestyle although marks the importance in passing on the language. He describes his experiences in Japan, first while stationed in Korea to visit a cousin, then later had spent 3 years stationed at the Canadian Embassy in Japan. Yeiji struggled with being a Japanese who could understand the language but had lost much of his ability to speak the language since learning as a young man.
Yeiji briefly describes bringing clothing and omiyage that couldn't be found in Ti-Jean with him when leaving for the road camp there. His sister Ritsuko Sarah Inouye was heavily involved with the Toronto chapter of the NAJC and later the Redress movement. He shares much of his personal photographs, saved newspaper clippings and articles with Kyla.

Credits

Interviewer: Kyla Fitzgerald
Interviewee: Yeiji Inouye
Publication Information: See Terms of Use for publication and licensing information.
Setting: Victoria, BC, Canada
Keywords: Pre-World War Two, World Two, Post-war (1948 onwards), Redress Settlement (1980’s), Present ; North Vancouver ; State Falls; Coquitlam ; Vancouver ; Port Hammond ; Haney ; Maple Ridge ; Ti-Jean; Van Tech School; Kitsilano ; Pearl Harbor ; judo; navy; logging; sawmill; baseball; Greenwood ; renting; Korea; Victoria Judo Club; inter-marriage; newspapers; language; community; uprooting; internment; family; culture; fishing; Hakujin; Redress ; VNCS ; NAJC ; Canadian Embassy; oshogatsu; New Denver ; RCMP

Terminology

Readers of these historical materials will encounter derogatory references to Japanese Canadians and euphemisms used to obscure the intent and impacts of the internment and dispossession. While these are important realities of the history, the Landscapes of Injustice Research Collective urges users to carefully consider their own terminological choices in writing and speaking about this topic today as we confront past injustice. See our statement on terminology, and related sources here.