Shinseki will speak at memorial and at Japanese Cultural Center
Former Army Chief of Staff Gen. Eric Shinseki will be the keynote speaker at the Oahu AJA Veterans Council's second annual joint memorial service at 9 a.m. Sept. 30 at the National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific.
He also will speak at the Japanese Cultural Center of Hawaii from 10 a.m. to noon Oct. 1 as part of the University of Hawaii at Manoa's Universal Values for a Democratic Society Endowed Forum Series.
Shinseki, a Kauai native and 1965 West Point graduate, is the first Asian American to achieve four-star general. As Army chief in 2003, he ran afoul of former Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld when he told Congress that "several hundred thousand" U.S. soldiers would be needed in postwar Iraq, an estimate the Army later conceded was on target.
The Oahu AJA Veterans Council consists of World War II veterans of the 100th Infantry Battalion, 442nd Regimental Combat Team, Military Intelligence Service and 1399th Construction Engineer Battalion. The service will honor soldiers from those units killed in action during World War II and those who have died since.
Former TV news anchor Barbara Tanabe, daughter of MIS veteran Frank Tanabe, will be the mistress of ceremonies. Music will be provided by the Royal Hawaiian Band, Honpa Hongwanji Hawaii Betsuin Choir and bagpiper Alan Miyamura.
The Oahu AJA Veterans Council chose to hold this service on the last Sunday of September in memory of the first member of the four units killed in action in World War II, Sgt. Joe Takata of the 100th Infantry Battalion. Takata, 24, was killed on Sept. 29, 1943, while leading an attack on a German machine-gun nest in southern Italy.
Because of limited parking at Punchbowl, bus service will be provided from the Alapai terminal and back after the service. Free parking will be available across Alapai Street at the Civic Center parking lot.
Buses will leave the Alapai bus stop at 7:30 a.m. in 12-minute intervals, with the last one leaving at 8:30 a.m. Each bus will serve normal stops along the way.
Carpools with three or more people will have priority for parking at Punchbowl.
At the JCCH, Shinseki will speak about the values that shaped and inspired his leadership style. The forum is open to the public. Boxed lunch and beverage will be available for $7. Parking is available for $3 with validation at the JCCH parking garage.
The deadline to RSVP and place a lunch order is Wednesday. Call Laarni Gedo in the College of Art and Sciences, Office of Community and Alumni Relations, at 956-5790.
The Universal Values for a Democratic Society Nisei Veterans Endowed Forum Series was established by the College of Arts and Sciences to foster discussions on values and their role in a democracy.