ALAMEDA, CA – The Alameda Asian Pacific Islander Cultural Festival Committee announced today they will honor four distinguished Asian Pacific Islander American veterans at Alameda’s 3rd Annual API Cultural Festival scheduled for Sunday, May 19, 2013, from Noon to 5 p.m. at Alameda’s South Shore Center. The event is free and open to the public.
The Alameda API Cultural Festival is an annual event that celebrates Asian Pacific Islander Heritage Month. It draws attention and increases awareness of the numerous and diverse cultures that make up the Asian Pacific Islander community by presenting a variety of on-stage performances, activities, food and displays.
In conjunction with the upcoming Memorial Day holiday, The Coca-Cola Company, Honorary Chairperson Assemblymember Rob Bonta, D-Alameda, Comcast, Alameda Hospital, Chinese American Heroes organization, Bay Area Rapid Transit and the Alameda Asian Pacific Islander Cultural Festival will be honoring five API veterans who have distinguished themselves through their exemplary military service for our country. It will be the first public event of its kind throughout the Bay Area to recognize these veterans—all who have a connection to the Alameda community.
The five honorees are:
Captain Moon Chin, whose heroic exploits as a WWII pilot included rescuing Lt. Colonel Jimmy Doolittle in 1942 from China after Doolittle’s raid on Tokyo; “Jug” Takeshita who served in the prestigious WWII 442nd Japanese American Regiment and liberated a holocaust camp in Europe although his family was still living in an internment camp stateside, and local Alamedan Colonel Richard F. Hum, who briefed President John F. Kennedy on the Russian missile threat during the 1962 Cuban Missile crisis. US Army 1st Sargeant Eustaquio “Oliver” Valerio, who led men of one of the first Philippine Battalions while serving in the Pacific during WWII. Master Chief Felix R. Marquez Jr., who served 30 years in the USN, twice stationed at NAS-Alameda as an air traffic controller; and who later served as Assistant Air Port Manager at the air station until 1995. Personal possessions and historical material will be on display with video of the honorees courtesy of the Alameda Free Library as part of their Oral History collection. Chinese American Heroes will be making possible a meet and greet with Captain Moon Chin following the honors presentation.
The Festival will feature Encinal High School’s Color Guard, Lincoln Middle School’s Band and remarks by key public officials and recognition of the youngest API members of our community just entering military service. Cultural performances will demonstrate the diversity that is representative of Alameda and will include Vietnamese lion dance, Thai dance, Korean drumming and Filipino martial arts.
The Festival will be announcing the winner of the API Heritage Month that is open to Alameda high school students. Posters will be on display for viewing.