Hiroshi "Hershey" Miyamura oral history interview, part 2 of 5, July 24, 2004

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During wartime, Hiroshi "Hershey" Miyamura worked at the Ford Agency and was the youngest mechanic at 17 years old. He recalls December 7, 1941, and hearing the news when he went duck hunting. Hershey was shocked and felt uncertain about the future for Japanese Americans.

The community of Gallup after the Pearl Harbor attack did not blame the Japanese Americans for the bombing. Shortly after December 7, law enforcement came to Hershey's home and confiscated the radio and camera. Some of the men in Gallup tried to volunteer but were labeled 4C "enemy alien." They had to wait to receive a draft notice to serve in the Army.

In January 1944, Hershey was drafted into the Army. Hershey tried to volunteer a year earlier but was not accepted. After getting the draft notice, Hershey reported to Camp Blanding, Florida, and Camp Shelby, Mississippi, for training.

Hershey discusses the relationship between the Hawaiian soldiers and the Mainland soldiers. Hershey made friends easily and got along with the Hawaiian soldiers.

When the 442nd replacement was leaving for overseas, seven soldiers and Hershey stayed behind due to their age. Then Hershey was assigned to the 100th Battalion, D Company, the heavy weapons company. Hershey then took 13 weeks of heavy weapons basic training.

Later, Hershey was attached to the 171st Separate Battalion. After arriving in Naples, Italy, Hershey learned the war ended in Europe. Hershey was assigned to guard the POWs and military and medical supplies.

Hershey spent most of his time in Italy except when he went on furlough to Switzerland. When Hershey returned to the mainland, there were festivities welcoming home the soldiers. Hershey reported to Fort Meade for his discharge, but he reenlisted for the Army Reserve for three years.

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video/m4v

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Date

Identifier

2004OH0471_02_Miyamura

Citation

Miyamura, Hiroshi "Hershey"; narrator, Yamazaki, Christine; interviewer, and Go For Broke National Education Center; publisher, “Hiroshi "Hershey" Miyamura oral history interview, part 2 of 5, July 24, 2004,” Japanese American Military History Collective, accessed November 28, 2022, https://ndajams.omeka.net/items/show/1058036.