Japanese siblings reunite with Fil-Jap aunt

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Wednesday, May 14, 2014


FOUR grandchildren of a Japanese cook during the World War II will visit a Filipino-Japanese descendant, the only surviving offspring of their grandfather at the F. Bangoy International Airport tomorrow, May 16.

Retired Judge Antonina Oshita Escovilla, president of the Philippine Nikkei-Jin Kai Inc., said the visit of the grandchildren of the late Genichi Miyazato to their aunt Conchita Miyazato Basilan, 73, a resident of Digos, Davao del Sur, marks the first time that a homecoming/reunion is held in the Philippines.

The grandchildren of Miyazato are Tsuyoshi, 55, Shigeru Taira, 67, Hiroshi, 64, and Katsuko Minei, 60, all from Okinawa, Japan.

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She said a Japan-Philippines nongovernment organization (NGO) sponsors Filipino-Japanese descendants to go to Japan and meet their relatives there, but this year, it will be the Japanese relatives who will come to the Philippines to personally be with the descendants.

“She’s really very lucky. They tried everything to look for her. So, this is going to be a reunion,” Escovilla told Sun.Star Davao in an interview at her office Wednesday.

Based on the briefer given by Escovilla, it was Tsuyoshi who asked for help from the office of the Philippine Nikkei-jin Legal Support Center (PNLSC) to look for Genichi’s grave and his family in the Philippines.

The Japanese relatives will arrive tomorrow morning.

Escovilla said the Miyazato family will also visit the grave of their grandfather and the war memorials. (ANC)

Published in the Sun.Star Davao newspaper on May 15, 2014.

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