Hai Sai! Welcome to my Blog.

Hello, my name is Tom Corrao and I am the blogger behind the Okinawaology Blog. I created this blog to share and discuss all things Okinawan. I’m also the Public Relations Officer and Minkan Taishi to the Chicago Okinawa Kenjinkai. My experience with Okinawa is derived from the time I spent there during the 1980's and 90's (10 years) when serving in the United States Air Force. I've also been married to an Okinawan woman for 30 years now and have been immersed in many things Okinawan through both friends and family. I do not claim to be all knowing about everything Okinawan but I try hard and study the history and culture. I welcome everyone that is interested in Okinawa and hope that I can provide useful information to those uchinanchu that may be curious about their culture and heritage. I also welcome those who are not of Okinawan heritage but have experienced, or are experiencing, the islands culture while stationed there with the United States Military. Comments are welcomed and will be published as long as they are in good taste and on track with the purpose of this blog. My hope with this blog is to bring Uchinanchu people around the world a little closer to their cultural roots by expressing information that has started to fade in light of a more modern world. We should never forget our culture or the people who came before us and through the Blog my intentions are to meld the old with the new and implant knowledge that will help maintain the traditions and culture of an island people.

Thursday, June 17, 2010

Ken Hirata Memorial 1931 - 2010

Today I was searching the web and found a memorial to Kenji Hirata who was a former president of the Chicago Okinawa Kenjinkai. The memorial was produced by his family members and is a truely wonderful tribute to the man. I felt compelled to share it with everyone here on the blog and would like to express everyones gratitude to his family for everything he did for the Kenjinkai in his lifetime. He will be missed.

In Memoriam: Kenji Hirata (11.05.1931 - 04.19.2010) from Keith Takeshi Hirata on Vimeo.

Here are the words I found with the video written by his son Keith Hirata.

This is a collection of photographs I collected and assembled to honor the life of my father, Kenji Hirata.

He was born to Okinawan plantation workers in Hawai'i and lived his formative years there and in Okinawa during the turbulence of WWII. In his late teens, he led the way for his parents and his sisters to move to Chicago where they tenaciously carved out a life for themselves. He was a simple, hard-working man who sacrificially loved his family.
In his last season of life, he lived with the devastating effects of a ruptured brain aneurysm for nearly 12 years, but even in this, his spirit of joy was indomitable. Thank you Dad for living your life so well! You're truly free now.

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