Byron Honda Honored for WWII Service

Despite his family's internment, Honda served in the United States military.

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Damian Trujillo / NBC Bay Area

Seventy years ago, President Roosevelt sent Byron Honda and his family to the Amache Internment Camp in Colorado, as a reaction to World War II.

They joined tens of thousands of other Japanese Americans who were also led away behind the barbed wire.

Six thousand of them stood up and said they wanted to serve their country in the military. Byron Honda was one of them.

Byron signed up with the Military Intelligence Service, and later taught Japanese for the Navy Intelligence Service at the University of Colorado.

All the while, Byron’s family remained behind the barbed wire at Amache. His son Mike was one year old at the time. Mike Honda is currently a congressman representing California's 15th Congressional District, which includes much of the South Bay.

Today, he’s a United States Congressman. On Thursday, at a ceremony in San Jose, the Honda family will receive, posthumously, on behalf of Byron Honda, the highest civilian honor this nation can bestow-the Congressional Gold Medal.

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