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I will die in a special attack:
Yokaren writings

Last Letter of Masaichi Nakamura to His Parents

According to Orihara (1973, 324), on April 29, 1945, Masaichi Nakamura died in a special (suicide) attack off Okinawa at the age of 19. He was a member of the Kamikaze Special Attack Corps 5th Shōwa Squadron from Yatabe Naval Air Group in Ibaraki Prefecture. He was from Ōsaka Prefecture and was a member of the 18th Otsu Class of the Navy's Yokaren (Preparatory Flight Training Program). However, Osuo (2005) and Tokkōtai Senbotsusha (1990) do not list Nakamura as a pilot in the Kamikaze Special Attack Corps 5th Shōwa Squadron or any other Shōwa Squadron, so it could not be confirmed that he died in a special attack. A plaque at Yatabe Naval Air Group Pilot Statue and Guard Gate at Entsūji Temple in Tokamachi City, Niigata Prefecture, lists all members of the seven Shōwa Squadrons, but the name of Masaichi Nakamura is not included.

He wrote the following final letter:

Dear Father and Mother,

Thank you for many things for a long time. Despite being young, I go to the place of decisive battle on behalf of the Empire, and I will destroy the enemy completely. I have obtained a place to die for the Emperor and country, and there is no greater honor.

Please forgive me for not being able to show any gratitude.

Please raise my younger sisters Taeko and Chizuko and my younger brother Takeo to be fine persons. This is my final request.

Finally, I pray for the health of Father and everyone. I bid you farewell.

Letter translated by Bill Gordon
November 2018

The letter and biographical information come from Orihara (1973, 324).

Sources Cited

Orihara, Noboru, comp. 1973. Ware tokkō ni shisu: Yokaren no ikō (I will die in a special attack: Yokaren (Preparatory Flight Training Program) writings). Tōkyō: Keizai Ōraisha.

Osuo, Kazuhiko. 2005. Tokubetsu kōgekitai no kiroku (kaigun hen) (Record of special attack corps (Navy)). Tōkyō: Kōjinsha.

Tokkōtai Senbotsusha Irei Heiwa Kinen Kyōkai (Tokkōtai Commemoration Peace Memorial Association). 1990. Tokubetsu Kōgekitai (Special Attack Corps). Tōkyō: Tokkōtai Senbotsusha Irei Heiwa Kinen Kyōkai.