Ben Kuroki


Name Ben Kuroki
Born May 16 1917
Died September 1 2015
Birth Location Gothenburg, Nebraska
Generational Identifier

Nisei

War hero and journalist. Nisei and Nebraska native Ben Kuroki was able to break through prejudice in the U.S. military to become a decorated aerial gunner who flew 58 combat missions over both Europe and the Pacific. His exploits were highly publicized, and he was even dispatched to the concentration camps holding West Coast Japanese Americans to encourage the inmates to serve in the army. After the war, he became a journalist for several publications, retiring in 1980. He was awarded the Distinguished Service Medal in 2005.

For More Information

Hansen, Arthur A. "Sergeant Ben Kuroki's Perilous 'Home Mission': Contested Loyalty and Patriotism in the Japanese American Detention Center." In Remembering Heart Mountain: Essays on Japanese American Internment in Wyoming. Ed. and contribution by Mike Mackey. Powell, Wyoming: Western History Publications, 1998. 153-75.

Lukesh, Jean A. Lucky Ears: The True Story of Ben Kuroki, World War II Hero. Grand Island, NE: Field Mouse Productions, 2010. [Young adult biography of Kuroki.]

Martin, Ralph G. Boy from Nebraska. New York: Harper & Row Brothers, 1946.

Most Honorable Son. Documentary produced by KDN Films. Written and Directed by Bill Kubota. 2007. 57 min. PBS website for the documentary, http://www.pbs.org/mosthonorableson/.