Kinji Inomata to Speak in Torrance on Feb. 14

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Kinji Inomata (center) at his book-signing event during the

Kinji Inomata (wearing hat) at his book-signing event during the 2013 Hapa Japan Festival at Union Center for the Arts in Little Tokyo.

TORRANCE — Kinji Inomata will talk about his book “Pure Winds, Bright Moon: The Untold Story of the Stately Steward and His Hapa Family Beautiful” on Friday, Feb. 14, at 7 p.m. at Faith United Methodist Church, 2115 W. 182nd St., Torrance.

All are welcome. The talk is sponsored by the Greater L.A. Singles Chapter of the Japanese American Citizens League. For information, call Louise at (310) 327-3169 or Janet (310) 835-7568.

Inomata, a retired paralegal, currently works as a professional Polynesian musician. He will also sing a few Hawaiian songs with his ukulele.

“Pure Winds, Bright Moon” details the remarkable story of Inomata’s grandfather Kenji Inomata, who left Japan as a stowaway and jumped ship in New York in 1899. He served in the U.S. Navy for 30 years.

He married his wife, who was of European and Creole heritage, in 1916. The family moved to Los Angeles in 1928. Contrary to alien land laws prohibiting Japanese immigrants from owning land, he was among the first to own property.

Inomata was also the only Japanese male of record who was “honorably” exempted from the World War II concentration camps. He and his Hapa family were the only family of Japanese ancestry allowed to live in wartime Los Angeles, with the exception of Japanese wives of white soldiers and some Hapas under the Army’s racist mixed-marriage policy.

The comprehensive, well-documented book with many pictures covers much more of the story of the grandfather and his family.

“Pure Winds, Bright Moon” is available at the JANM bookstore at http://janmstore.com/151397.html or from the author’s website at http://purewindsbrightmoon-untoldstory.weebly.com/.

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