Yosegaki Hinomaru 日の丸寄せ書き: Returning the flags of their fathers

WW2, WW2 Pacific Treasures

By Pierre Kosmidis

The nation of Japan experienced nearly 2,000,000 lost soldiers during the war for the Pacific.

Of these, approximately 1,140,000 are still Missing In Action.

That is, they were killed but no trace of their bodies was ever recovered.

The Good Luck Flag, known as hinomaru yosegaki (日の丸寄せ書き) in the Japanese language, was a traditional gift for Japanese servicemen deployed during the military campaigns of the Empire of Japan, though most notably during World War II.

The flag given to a soldier was a national flag signed by friends and family, often with short messages wishing the soldier victory, safety, and good luck.

These personalized flags, given by family and friends to the soldier before leaving home and later brought back as battlefield souvenirs, is the family’s only opportunity to connect with their lost relative.

This is not some article of cloth…..this flag contains the living spirit of that person who carried it.

The Japanese family members, upon receiving it will speak to it and say, “You have finally come home.”

That is the miracle a noble couple attempts to provide.