I write in regard to Tom Ige, a recent resident at Nikkei Senior Garden in Arleta (San Fernando Valley). It was reported in the Pacific Citizen (Feb. 24-March 9, 2017) that Tom made a sizeable donation to the newspaper, and I felt the need to meet with him to thank him for his generosity.
I got together with former chapter president Harold Kameya and his wife, Ellen, to meet with Tom and myself for breakfast at a restaurant. Ellen told us her maiden name was Ige, and her brother had written a book about the village in Okinawa where the Ige’s originated. She brought the book to the restaurant and presented it to Tom.
We asked Tom how he had come to decide to donate to the Pacific Citizen. He said he read in Gil Asakawa’s column regarding the P.C.’s financial need, and he then contacted Gil. Tom says he served as vice president of a JACL Chapter in San Jose back in the 1980s, but lost JACL contact when he moved to Southern California.
Tom told me he has always valued his subscription to the Pacific Citizen, which keeps him abreast of important issues and news pertinent to JACL and the rest of our community. He hopes that his donation encourages others to donate to the Pacific Citizen and become members of JACL, as the P.C.’s longevity is pertinent to aiding JACL’s overall mission and values.
Harold is our membership chair and was quick to email him a membership application for our chapter (JACL gifted Tom a Lifetime Membership in appreciation of his donation). It was good getting to know Tom, and thank him, over breakfast. I invited him to attend our next JACL board meeting this month.
President, San Fernando Valley Chapter JACL