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Tochigi Special Attack Corps Monument
Utsunomiya City, Tochigi Prefecture

The Special Attack Corps Monument at Tochigi Prefecture Gokoku Jinja honors the men who died in battle while carrying out special (suicide) attacks during the Pacific War. The monument has a bronze figure of the front half of a kamikaze pilot standing on a stone pedestal. A gokoku jinja is a Shinto shrine dedicated to persons from a prefecture or other area who died to defend the country of Japan. Each gokoku jinja has several monuments to remember those persons who died in wars.

Replicas of the standing kamikaze pilot have been erected also at other shrines such as Ehime Gokoku Jinja, Fukui Gokoku Jinja, Kagoshima Gokoku Jinja, and Setagaya Kannon Temple in Tōkyō Prefecture. The monuments have the same bronze figure of the front half of a kamikaze pilot standing on a stone pedestal, but the monument arrangements and the explanatory plaques or inscriptions differ between locations.

The Tochigi Special Attack Corps Monument has the following explanation engraved on the left-hand side of the statue's pedestal:

We certainly will never forget you

Near the end of the former Greater East Asia War, Special Attack Corps members carried out taiatari (body-crashing) attacks against enemy ships by carrying bombs or piloting torpedoes as they tried to hold off the enemy's overwhelming military might. These Special Attack Corps members, believing in their country's security, died in battle in Pacific lands, seas, and skies. More than 5,800 men nationwide, including 94 from Tochigi Prefecture, died in battle.

Through donations by many prefecture residents, this monument of the "Special Attack Hero Statue," contributed by the Tokkōtai (Special Attack Corps) Commemoration Peace Memorial Association, could be erected here. We pray that the noble praiseworthy deeds of the Special Attack Corps members may be communicated to future generations through this monument.

August 15, 2010
Tochigi Prefecture Special Attack Commemoration Association

The Tokkōtai Commemoration Peace Memorial Association and the Association to Pass On the Japanese Spirit (Nihonjin no kokoro o tsutaeru kai) have worked together since 2006 to support erection of these types of monuments to remember kamikaze pilots and other men who died while carrying out special attacks during World War II.

The large characters on the plaque on the front face of the pedestal say "Ā tokkō" (Ah, Special Attacks). The plaque on front also has in small characters the following statement: "We certainly will never forget you."

Close-up of kamikaze pilot on
Tochigi Special Attack Corps Monument

The following last letters, diary entries, and other writigs were written by Special Attack Corps members from Tochigi Prefecture who died in special attacks: