Last Letter from Flight Petty Officer 2nd Class Seiichi Kōsaku to His
Flight Petty Officer 2nd Class Seiichi Kōsaku from Toyama Prefecture died at
the age of 19 in a special (suicide) attack near Okinawa. On April 16, 1945, he
took off from Kokubu No. 2 Air Base piloting a Type 99 Carrier Dive Bomber
(Allied code name of Val) as a member of the Navy's Kamikaze Special Attack
Corps. He graduated in the 18th Class of the Otsu Flight Training Program, and
he was a member of the 3rd Hachiman Gokō 
Squadron from Usa Air Group.
He wrote the following last letter to his parents on the eve before his final
Father and Mother,
Have you been doing well recently? I am very well.
At last in this critical season when it is time to strike, I also will go to
die in battle like a cherry blossom as a member of the Kamikaze Special Attack
Corps. Please smile without crying.
We launched attacks on the 6th and 12th . During the attack on the 12th, I
lost my Navy friend Kurata (shown in enclosed photo of us two), who I liked best
of all the two billion people in the world. Flight Petty Officer 1st Class
Kurata was Hisahiro Kurata, the only son in his family from Kawara-machi, Muroto
Town, Aki-gun in Kōchi Prefecture. He was my Navy friend among friends who slept
alongside me each night for three years. Please make contact with his hometown.
For me now it is the night before my sortie. This is it since there is no
I hope that you will live in good health, while I go ahead to the eternal road.
The remarks that I made to Japan's one hundred million people on the eve
before the attack on the 12th will be broadcast between the 20th and 25th, so
The Toyama Gokoku Jinja (Shrine) in Toyama City has an exhibit that includes
a photo and writings of Seiichi Kosaku.
Letter translated by Bill Gordon
of Letter and Photo
The letter and photo are from Iwamoto and Tsutomu (1992, 118-9). Kiyoshi
Iwamoto kindly granted permission for their use.
1. Hachiman is the Japanese god of military
power. Usa City in Ōita Prefecture has the first Hachiman Shrine, which was
established in the early 8th century. Gokō means "protecting the
Emperor" in Japanese.
2. The first of the Kikusui (Floating
Chrysanthemum) mass kamikaze attacks during the Battle of Okinawa took place on
April 6, 1945. The second Kikusui mass attack was carried out on April 12, 1945.
Iwamoto, Kiyoshi, and Tsutomu Mukaida, eds. 1992. Chinkon
-- shirakumo ni norete kimi kaerimase: Tokkō kichi daini kokubu no ki
(Repose of souls -- riding on the white clouds, come back to us: Record of
Special Attack Corps Kokubu No. 2 Air Base). Mizobe Town, Kagoshima
Prefecture: Jūsanzukabaru tokkōhi hozon iinkai (Committee to Preserve the
Jūsanzukabaru Special Attack Corps Monument).