Japanese-American Activist And Malcolm X Ally Dies At 93 : Code Switch : NPR: Japanese-American activist Yuri Kochiyama has died of natural causes in Berkeley, Calif., at the age of 93. The lifelong champion of civil rights causes in the black, Latino, Native American and Asian-American communities passed away peacefully in her sleep on Sunday morning, according to her family.
Born in 1921 as Mary Yuriko Nakahara, Kochiyama spent the early years of her life in San Pedro, Calif., a small town south of Los Angeles. Months after the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor, she and her family were forced to relocate to internment camps along with tens of thousands of other Japanese-Americans. She met her late husband Bill Kochiyama, who served with other Japanese-American soldiers in the 442nd Regimental Combat Team, at the Jerome Relocation Center in Arkansas, where she spent two years.