"Go For Broke," an exhibit about Japanese-American soldiers in World War II, is on view at the Nisei Veterans Memorial Center in Wailuku through June 13.
The photos show the men who served in the 100th Infantry Battalion, 442nd Regimental Combat Team and Military Intelligence Service (MIS). Many of the men came from Hawai'i and some photos also show Maui veterans. Also on view are a video, related reference books, medals, and a small selection of artifacts, such as uniforms and a vintage radio of that era.
The large black and white images with informative captions show how these soldiers trained, fought and became among the most highly decorated military units of the war. There are combat photos from Europe and images of the liberation of German concentration camps, as well as scenes of homecoming.
In March 1943, West Maui men who volunteered for the 442nd regimental combat team gathered for this picture at the Lahaina Courthouse. The “77” on the banner refers to the number of volunteers.
The exhibit also includes images related to earlier Japanese immigration to Hawai'i and the U.S.; the pre-war Japanese experience and much other material related to the legacy of Nisei Veterans.
The display is presented by Eric Saul, co-founder of the Go For Broke 100th/442nd/MIS Foundation, later called the National Japanese American Historical Society. The show was originally created in 1980 and 1981 through the efforts of more than 100 Nisei veterans in the San Francisco Bay Area and Los Angeles. The exhibit toured widely before coming to Maui.
The Nisei Veterans Memorial Center, located at 665 Kahului Beach Road, is free and open to the public. The center is open Monday through Saturday from noon to 4 p.m. and on Memorial Day, Monday, May 26.
Donations are welcome.