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The Bainbridge Island Japanese American Community will not hold its annual commemoration ceremony on March 30, the day 78 years ago when the first of 120,000 Japanese Americans to be forcibly removed and exiled from the West Coast during World War II.
It will be the first time in 18 years that the event has been canceled, said Clarence Moriwaki, president of the nonprofit Bainbridge Island Japanese American Community.
“We expect that the memorial site will continue to be open to visitors, and those who are in good health may choose to join for a moment of silence at 11 a.m. on that day, Monday, March 30,” Moriwaki said in the announcement.
“Health and safety for everyone are our paramount concerns, especially for our remaining beloved and vulnerable survivors of whom we wish to honor,” he added.
The commemoration ceremony at the Bainbridge Island Japanese American Exclusion Memorial is one of BIJAC’s three big annual events, which also include Mochi Tsuki at Woodward Middle School in January, and the community’s summer picnic at Battle Point Park in August.