The Go For Broke National Education Center issued the following statement on Sept. 4 about Ben Kuroki, the only Japanese American air war hero of World War II, who died on Sept. 1 at the age of 98.
It is with much sadness that we learn about the passing of Sgt. Ben Kuroki. The “boy from Nebraska” overcame insurmountable odds to enlist in the U.S. Army Air Corps, becoming an aerial bomber who eventually flew 58 combat missions over Europe and the Pacific.
He was a hero even before the war ended, garnering national publicity and serving as a role model to Japanese Americans still in the camps. With the end of the war, he became an award-winning owner and editor of newspapers.
In 2005, the U.S. Army awarded Kuroki the Distinguished Service Medal.
With Sgt. Kuroki’s passing, yet another Nisei hero has left us – but his story, like those of so many others, will continue to inspire all Americans for years to come.