Except from Congressional Record, July 25, 1979

Remarkable Parents


of California

in the House of Representatives
Monday, July 23, 1979

Mr. MATSUI. Mr. Speaker, I would like to bring to the attention of my colleagues two remarkable parents who are constituents of mine. Masao and Sumako Itano of Sacramento have raised a family of four under most difficult circumstances, yet all four children have become outstanding citizens.

Though Masao attributes his children's success to their desire to study, I believe credit must be given to him and Sumako for encouraging their children to obtain an education. Learning had always been important to Masao, who left Japan at the age of 17 to seek an education in San Francisco. After attending high school there, he worked his way through the University of California at Berkeley, and graduated in 1917 with a degree in agriculture.

Masao and his young family moved to Sacramento where he did some farming, and he began an insurance business. However, the family was uprooted after Pearl Harbor, and Masao was forced into an internment camp for Japanese Americans.

Harvey, the eldest son, was a chemistry major at UC-Berkeley during that period. He wanted to come home to help his family, but his father wrote that he should never give up his education, and that Harvey should complete his courses.

Harvey graduated in 1942, but neither he nor his family was able to attend the ceremony because all had been confined to the internment camps. Yet even while imprisoned, Dean, Edith, and Masashi continued their education.

Upon their release, the children completed their formal education. Dean became a banker-lawyer, Edith a dietician, and Masashi a pathologist. Recently, Harvey became the first Japanese American to be named to the National Academy of Sciences.

Masao and Sumako can also take pride in their grandchildren among them including a Ph.D. in physics from Harvard, two fishery biologists, and an electrical engineer.

Such accomplishments by children and grandchildren can only come about by loving and supportive parents. It is fitting then, that Masao and Sumako be honored for all of their efforts.

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