Sukeo Oji oral history interview, part 1 of 7, May 26, 2002


Dublin Core


Sukeo "Skeets" Oji was born on February 24, 1918, in Sacramento, CA. He got his nickname Skeets because Sukeo was hard to pronounce. Skeets' father, Ozo Oji, was a hard-working man. He immigrated to the United States by himself from Hiroshima, Japan. Skeets' father found a job working on the railroad but later started farming. Not being able to return to Japan, his father decided to marry a picture bride, Skeets’ mother, Sujino Kiso. Skeets has seven siblings.

The late 1920s was the Great Depression, and everyone struggled to survive. Farmers were making about ten cents an hour. In the 1930s, the family moved to Perkins (east of Sacramento). Their family friend suggested to Skeets' father to venture into hops. However, that venture failed.

During Skeets' elementary school years, he attended Japanese Language School. When the family moved to Perkins, he attended Sacramento High School. He was active in sports and participated in a Nisei football league. In 1936, Skeets graduated high school and applied to Sacramento Junior College after a year of farming.

Living in Perkins, their farm was near a naval air forces base. Skeets recalls seeing the airplanes fly by and aspired to be an aviator and an officer of the United States Army. In early 1940, the United States was preparing for war. A civilian pilot program was offered at school, and Skeets was accepted into the program. After completing the first and second phases, he was waiting for the third phase, instrument flying and long distant country flying. However, Skeets did not complete his training because Skeets got drafted into the Army. On November 6, 1941, Skeets reported to Presidio Monterey for induction.



Oral History Item Type Metadata


Date of Birth

1918 Feb 24

Location of Birth

Branch of Service

Entrance into Service




Oji, Sukeo: narrator, Yee, Govan: interviewer, and Go For Broke National Education Center: publisher, “Sukeo Oji oral history interview, part 1 of 7, May 26, 2002,” Japanese American Military History Collective, accessed April 20, 2024,