Alumnus and Japanese-American WWII vet Kenji Sayama donates Congressional Gold Medal to Bancroft

“Kenji Sayama, a 1942 UC Berkeley graduate and a veteran of the U.S. Army’s Military Intelligence Service has donated to The Bancroft Library a Congressional Gold Medal awarded to him and to about 19,000 other Japanese Americans who served in World War II. They were recruited into all-Japanese-American military units known for the motto, ‘Go For Broke.’

Sayama, 91,presented the medal to Chancellor Robert Birgeneau and Bancroft Director Elaine Tennant last Friday (April 20) in a small ceremony at the library. The chancellor accepted the medal, calling Sayama ‘a hero.’

‘I can’t think of any better place to send (the medal) to than this university,’ Sayama said after the ceremony.” – Kathleen Maclay, Media Relations

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