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Wally Yonamine

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Wally Yonamine
The Herald-Asahi is running an excellent article about Wally Yonamine's life, from a child in the cane fields of Hawaii during the attack on Pearl Harbor, through his brief football career, becoming the first post-war American to play in Japan, his tremendous career as a Giant, to playing for and later managing the Dragons. There are even a couple of short interviews with Hideki Matsui and Sadaharu Oh about Yonamine's influence on them and Japanese baseball.

Yonamine summed up his Japanese career best in the article:
"When I first came to Japan, I had three goals I wanted to accomplish," says Yonamine, reflecting back on a fascinating life. "I wanted to manage a ballclub in Japan and try to win a championship, which I did. The second was to get into the Japan Baseball Hall of Fame one day when my career was over, which I also did. The third thing, which I thought was almost impossible, was to shake hands with the Emperor. One day I had an audience with the Emperor in Los Angeles and I was able to shake hands with him. Here in Japan you could never shake his hand, you would just bow to him, but since we were in America I stuck out my hand and he shook it."
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