This year’s election is a time to reflect on and to honor the sacrifices that our parents and families made during World War II to defend democracy — and to ensure that the lessons of Hawai‘i’s Nisei veterans and families stand in perpetuity as examples of justice and equality.
As 1940 high school graduates, my parents experienced firsthand the impacts of the December 7th attack on Pearl Harbor and Hawai‘i’s entry into World War II. My father volunteered to serve in the 442nd Regimental Combat Team, while two of my mother’s sisters were relocated from their West Coast homes to internment camps in Utah.
Although my parents ultimately finished college, obtained good jobs as educators and provided a wholesome, solid middle-class upbringing for my sister and me, their true legacy rests in their values, their character and their generation’s unity of purpose in fighting discrimination.
The deep-seated values that my late father, Harold Fukunaga, and mother Jane taught me — hard work, fairness, respect for families and communities and service to others — have helped guide me in listening to my constituents’ concerns, doing my homework and using the measuring stick of fairness in crafting thoughtful solutions.
To my father, a decorated 442nd veteran who served in Europe and came home to raise a family, it was all about duty, patriotism and honor. I am honored to benefit from that heritage of service and have sought to carry on that legacy as an elected official in the State Legislature and now in the City Council for the past two years.
As a Councilmember representing a diverse range of communities — from Makiki-Punchbowl, Downtown/Chinatown, Nu‘uanu-Liliha, parts of Kaka‘ako, Kalihi Valley and all the way over through Moanalua, ‘Aiea and Hälawa Heights — I know that trust is something that must be earned. District 6 is a diverse blending of cultures, of people, of long-standing challenges in older neighborhoods and of opportunity. By tackling those challenges together, respecting families and individuals, we can provide a better life for all who live in our neighborhoods.
Thank you to those who supported me during the 2012 elections and again supported my candidacy in the 2014 primary. I humbly ask for your support again on Election Day, November 4th. — Mahalo nui loa, Carol Fukunaga, City Councilmember, District 6