SURE, IT'S WORDS FROM AND OLD BROADWAY SHOW...'GETTIN' TO KNOW ALL ABOUT 'CHA'....HEY, LIVING HERE ON THE GREAT GREEN PLANET EARTH, JUST FIGURES YOU HAVE TO KNOW A LOT OF FOLKS....OVER THESE YEARS OF WRITING STORIES I'VE MENTIONED MANY PEOPLE I HAVE MET PERSONALLY OR VISITED WITH THEM THRU LETTERS OR LIKE SOME OF YOU...HERE ON THE SCREEN. PERSONALLY I HAVE WRITTEN ABOUT MEETING SENATOR JOHN F. KENNEDY IN 1959---MEETING JOHN WAYNE AT A CHEVROLET DEALERSHIP IN 1954, CULVER CITY CALIFORNIA...ESCORTING THE PHEASANT HUNTING PARTY OF ERNEST HEMINGWAY ABOUT 1948 IN IOWA...OH YES, THERE HAVE BEEN SO MANY....NOW WHEN I TELL THE STORY OF JOHN'S ANGELS I MENTION NOTABLES I HAVE SENT A JOHN'S ANGEL TO....ORHRA WINFREY, BETTE MIDLER, TOM BROKAW, ELTON JOHN. RECENTLY AN INCREDLOUS REMARK WAS MADE TO ME..."YOU KNOW TOM BROKAW"....I GUESS IT WAS ABOUT Y2K WHEN TOM BROKAW PUBLISHED HIS BOOK TITLED 'THE GREATEST GENERATION' ...I REALLY ENJOYED THE BOOK AND CORRESPONDED WITH MR. BROKAW ABOUT PERSONALLY KNOWING NOA TAKASUGI OF OXNARD, CALIFORNIA. MR. TAKASUGI OWNED AND OPERATED A SPECIALTY FOOD MARKET AND I WAS THEN HIS PLUMBER...BOTH AT HIS HOME AND AT THE MARKET...WHEN I WOULD GO TO HIS HOME TO DO WORK, THE KIND OLD COUPLE WOULD SHOW ME THEIR BACKYARD FISH POND AND THOSE LARGE, GOLDEN FISH THAT THEY REFERRED TO BY NAME...MR.BROKAW CORRESPONDED BACK TO ME AND SAID HE WAS OVERJOYED THAT I TOOK THE TIME TO CRITIQUE HIS 'GENERATION' BOOK...ABOUT THAT SAME TIME STEVE WILSON FROM THE ARIZONA REPUBLIC HAD DONE AN ARTICLE ABOUT ME AND JOHN'S ANGELS...I FWD'd THAT ARTICLE ALONG WITH THE FEATURED PICTURE TO TOM BROKAW AT HIS NEW YORK STUDIO...HE ASKED FOR A JOHN'S ANGEL WHICH OF COURSE, I SENT TO HIM...LATER I DID A DESK TOP SCROLL MADE OF WOOD WITH HIS NAME AND TITLE FROM NBC...ON THAT SCROLL I BRANDED THE LETTERING.... 'THE PEN IS MIGHTER THAN THE SWORD' ...TOM GOT BACK TO ME RATHER IN A HUMOROUS WAY THAT I SHOULD HAVE SEPARATED THE WORD PEN AND IS ON DIFFERENT LINES....I'VE TOLD YOU ALL ABOUT THE STORIES I WRITE AND MANY OF YOU HAVE HUMORED ME BY READING AND COMMENTING ON THEM...THANK YOU ALL...THERE WAS THIS OLD RED-NECKED SHERIFF (LIKE BARNEY FIFE) FROM THE HILLS OF TENNESSEE WHO ONCE COMMENTED ON THE VIETNAM MEMORIES BULLETIN BOARD WHERE I WRITE ALMOST DAILY...HE HAD CAUSTICALLY SCRIBED THERE FOR EVERYONE TO CONTEMPLATE THE FOLLOWING: "CHIEF, YOU GOTTA BE A HUNDRED YEARS OLD FOR CLAIMING TO KNOW ALL THE FOLKS YOU CLAIM TO KNOW".....I TOLD THE OLD PEACEKEEPER THAT I DIDN'T LIVE BACK IN THE BOONDOCKS WHERE I HAD TO WIPE THE HOOT-OWL CRAP OFF THE ALARM CLOCK TO SEE WHAT TIME OF DAY IT WAS.....HERE'S A PRINT OUT ON MR. NOA TAKASUGI AND WHY HE WAS WRITTEN ABOUT IN TOM BROKAW'S BOOK, THE GREATEST GENERATION “Still the Greatest Country” In the fall of 1941 Nao Takasugi WG’46 was a 19-year-old studying business at UCLA. Back home in Oxnard, Calif., his family —Japanese-Americans in good standing in their community—operated a thriving market. Then on Dec. 7, the day the Japanese bombed Pearl Harbor, everything changed. "Bam! In a matter of hours, the whole complexion of life turned for me," recalls Takasugi, a 77-year-old retired California lawmaker who was interviewed by Tom Brokaw for his World War II retrospective, The Greatest Generation. "I had to leave UCLA because all persons of Japanese ancestry were placed on a very tight curfew and their travel was restricted." Soon after Pearl Harbor, Takasugi’s family, along with thousands of others of Japanese descent (most of them U.S. citizens), were forced to "relocate" under Executive Order 9066. He recalls reporting to the Ventura train station, as instructed, to find "a big black old train" with its blinds drawn "waiting there under armed guard with bayonets and rifles." Boarding it, he says, "I was very fearful. I didn’t know where we were going to be taken." The train traveled for about five or six hours before stopping at a county fairground, which was to provide temporary living quarters until permanent relocation centers could be built. "Ours was one of the horse stalls, where asphalt had been hastily laid on the ground," Takasugi says. "It still smelled of horse manure." Five months later, they boarded another train and rode 18 hours into the Arizona desert. They then traveled another 45 miles by bus to barracks on the Gila River (Navajo) Indian Reservation, which would be his family’s home for the next four years. Takasugi managed an earlier exit from the internment camp. The Quaker relief organization, American Friends Service Committee, sent a representative to his camp urging young Japanese-Americans to apply for security clearances to attend colleges in the Midwest, East or South. They made arrangements for him to go to Temple University, staying in the home of a West Philadelphia minister. After finishing his studies at Temple, Takasugi went on to earn his MBA at Wharton. Although he felt "accepted very well" at Penn, Takasugi says he made few friendships while there. "I had to support myself by working part-time. I had very little time to get out and socialize." Finding no employment in Philadelphia, where accounting firms were afraid to hire him because of America’s lingering anti-Japanese sentiment, he returned to Oxnard, where he still lives today, to help run his family’s grocery store. When a Wharton classmate, Bill Schroeder WG’47, came to visit Takasugi in Oxnard, he was surprised to find him working behind the meat counter; Takasugi explained to his friend that MBA stood for "master of butchering arts." Takasugi’s exposure to politics came when he tried to expand his business and had his plans for a new sign turned down by the city. He learned that there was an opening on the planning commission and decided "they needed a businessman" to cut through the bureaucracy. Takasugi went on to serve two terms on the city council and then as Oxnard’s mayor for 10 years. In 1992 he won election as a Republican representative to the California State Assembly. Two summers ago, Takasugi suffered a heart attack and had to undergo bypass surgery. He reconsidered his goals while in the hospital, and chose to not run for reelection. After 22 years in public life, he explains, he wanted to spend more time with his seven grandchildren and work on his tennis game. Although his memories of internment remain vivid, Takasugi today professes no bitterness, attributing his attitude to a family philosophy of looking into the future rather than dwelling on the past. "When I’ve gone to speak to high-school history classes or civic organizations or church groups, I just tell them what a great country we have. You just won’t find the opportunity any place [else] for a person who has been ejected to be able to come back and be a mayor of a city or a state representative. In spite of the many mistakes and flaws, it’s still the greatest country in the world."