Ceremony commemorates WWII taiko drum

Here’s a neat story I got to shoot recently. Not too long ago a taiko drum was discovered in storage at a Buddhist temple in Nuuanu. On the drum was a reference to the Honouliuli Internment Camp during WWII.

The Honouliuli Internment Camp was one of Hawaii’s biggest internment camps and was declared a national monument by President Barack Obama.

Image uploaded from iOS (1).jpg
STEVEN TONTHAT / STONTHAT@STARADVERTISER.COM

In honor of 73 years since the inscription on the taiko drum, members of Hawaii’s Japanese Buddhist community and the Japanese Cultural Center traveled to Honouliuli to have a special Obon ceremony.

The ceremony was fairly short, but more importantly, it served as a reminder of a dark period in our nation’s history and how we must strive for peace.

What struck me the most was how much history was brought along with the drum.

As far as I can tell, the drum was the first real indicator of religious activity at the Honouliuli Internment Camp.

I had never been to the national monument so for me, it was a great history lesson. And as each official from the Japanese Buddhist community stepped forward to give a speech about peace, I was reminded of how far we’ve come as a society, and how far we still have to go.

Published by stonthat

Video Reporter and videographer at the Honolulu Star-Advertiser. Lover of comics, beginning photographer, master foodie.

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