Farewell Poem of Flight Warrant Officer Hayao Nishiguchi
At 0554 on March 19, 1945, Flight Warrant Officer Hayao Nishiguchi took off
from Kokubu No. 1 Air Base in a Suisei Dive Bomber (Allied code name of Judy)
carrying a 500-kg bomb and died in a special (suicide) attack southeast of
Kyūshū at the age of 22. He was a member of the Kamikaze Special Attack Corps
Kikusui Unit Suisei Squadron.
Nishiguchi grew up in Mie Prefecture and was a member of the 8th Otsu Class
of the Navy's Yokaren (Preparatory Flight Training Program) at Mie Air Base.
After training, he became a member of the 103rd Attack Hikōtai.
He wrote the following death poem:
Cherry tree blossom rides a plane
Without sparing its young life
Flower bud of twenty also will fall
For the Emperor, for the country
The above farewell poem was written by Hayao Nishiguchi on his flight
muffler, which has been embroidered by his wife with the characters of 艦爆隊
(Carrier Dive Bomber Unit). When he made a sortie for a special attack, this
muffler with his farewell poem was handed over to his wife by a base maintenance
Poem translated by Bill Gordon
The poem and background information on this page come from Kanoya Kōkū Kichi Shiryōkan Renraku Kyōgikai
(2003, 73) and Osuo (2005, 206).
Kanoya Kōkū Kichi Shiryōkan Renraku Kyōgikai (Kanoya Naval
Air Base Museum Coordinating Committee). 2003. Kokoro no sakebi (Cries
of the heart). Kanoya, Kagoshima Prefecture: Kanoya Kōkū Kichi Shiryōkan
Osuo, Kazuhiko. 2005. Tokubetsu kōgekitai no kiroku (kaigun
hen) (Record of special attack corps (Navy)). Tokyo: Kōjinsha.