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Turning Tragedy into Compassion: A Parent's Story

March 5th, 2010

On March 18, Hartnell College welcomes back Al and Jane Nakatani, a Japanese-American couple who survived the tragic and heart-wrenching deaths of all three of their children. Their mission now is to devote their lives to being agents of social change.

The Nakatanis will tell their story on Thursday, March 18, at 9:30 a.m. in room 125 of the Performing Arts building on Hartnell’s main campus at 411 Central Avenue in Salinas. The 90-minute presentation is free and open to the public.

The Nakatanis’ story has been told in the book, Honor Thy Children, written by Molly Fumia. They have made hundreds of appearances throughout the country, telling how prejudice, discrimination, and ignorance lead to human denigration. Their personal account of their family’s struggles--which include losing two sons to AIDS and one to random violence--inspires their listeners to accept human diversity, and greet others with love and acceptance.

The book and a DVD of the same title are available in the Hartnell College Library.

Tax-deductible donations to “Honor Thy Children, Inc.” will be accepted. For more information, please contact Yoshiko Matsushita-Arao, Hartnell psychology instructor, at 831-755-6781 or yarao@hartnell.edu.