"To Noriko and Aiko, Before the Sortie"

Captain Kenichi Shibuya

(August 5 2003)


Captain Kenichi Shibuya (Imperial Japanese Army)
Captain of Shimbu-tai Corps
Born in Ukata-cho, Matsumine-shi, Yamagata Prefecture
Died in the sea near Okinawa, in June 11th, 1945
Thirty-one years old
Became Colonel after death

To Noriko and Aiko, Before the Sortie

Your father was chosen to be a captain of the kamikaze corps, and will be the first to die in the battle with eleven members, who have not even gotten to the age of twenty. It is a silly idea of an ordinary man to look for a way he can both survive and win the war. Now I will accept my death and make a suicide attack. However, only gods know how the war would turn out. I believe it is a true national crisis. Although I am going to die, that doesn't mean that I will completely die. I will live in eternal righteousness.

1. Don't ever feel lonely. You still have your mother. I lost my parents at my early age; however, I never lost my cheerfulness and could grow up big. Japanese children should be glad to hear about the brave deaths of their fathers at battles. If you still miss your father, look up the sky. I will be on the white cloud in the air and smile at you.

2. Be a gentle person. If we win the war, that doesn't mean that we would be delivered from the national crisis. It is important to study hard until the peace would come to the world and the happiness would come to the whole mankind. I would be very glad if you get on well with your mother and worship my ancestors and me. I am glad to serve my empire as a flying officer, and I will be a divine wind that brings the spring to our gods. You should always thank the Emperor for his graciousness, and even if the time passes, you should never forget your loyalty to the Imperial House and your piety to your mother.

3. Your mother is truly a good mother. There are many wives of flying officers, however, there are only few resolute Japanese ladies like your mother. I always thank her. One of my regrets is that I couldn't make her much happy because I was so busy at the war. If you grow up, take care of your mother for me. It is my wish. Now, houses are burnt down by enemy planes at various cities, and there are countless boys and girls who lost their parents. It really hurts me. You should not forget that you are both happy within the arms of your mother and your grandparents. There is so much to write about, however, if you grow up, listen to your mother, know about your mother's troubles and don't be disobedient to her.

(from the report "Tokko" No.43/translated by Mr.Ishiguro)


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