For Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month we wanted to tell Dee Ito's story. When she was five years old she and her family were made to live in an internment camp in Arizona. The forced relocation of about 120,000 Japanese Americans during World War II is not a well known story in American history. Of those forcibly removed over 80,000 were “nissei” or second generation and “sansei” third generation, born in the USA. Less than 40% were even born in Japan. Prior to removal they had to sell their homes, businesses and all of their possessions.
Dee's story is important to talk about especially during the recent rise in hate crimes towards the Asian American and Pacific Islander community in this country.