DIALOGUE BY Karleen Chinen

The seed for a story on Emperor Akihito’s abdication from the Chrysanthemum Throne was planted in my head a few years ago by contributing writer Kevin Kawamoto following the emperor’s address to the people of Japan regarding the status of his health. As the prospect of his abdication became more real, Kevin and I began talking more seriously about a story on Emperor Akihito and his ties to Hawai‘i. Kevin began spending much of his free time in the library, combing through microfilm, newspapers, books, websites and more to pull together this fascinating history of Japan’s imperial family.

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