Last Letters of Navy
Special Attack Corps (1971)
Last Statement of Flight Petty Officer 2nd Class Tsutomu Fujimura
At 1245 on April 6, 1945, Flight Petty Officer 2nd Class Tsutomu Fujimura
took off from Kushira Air Base as radio operator/gunner in a Type 97 Carrier
Attack Bomber (Allied code name of Kate) carrying an 800-kg bomb. He was a member
of the Kamikaze Special Attack Corps 1st Goō Hakuro  Squadron
from Himeji Naval Air Group. He died in
a special (suicide) attack off Okinawa at the age of 19. He
Prefecture and was a member of the 18th Otsu Class of the Navy's Yokaren
(Preparatory Flight Training Program).
He wrote the following statement and death poem in tanka form (31-syllable
poem with lines of 5-7-5-7-7 syllables) before his sortie from Kushira Air Base:
I do not have a last letter. I do not have a will.
I believe in the permanence of Shinshū .
I will push forward as my duty.
I live for an eternal cause.
Blossoms on cherry tree
Left to wind
Not looking back
Last statement and poem translated by Bill Gordon
The last statement and poem come from Matsugi
(1971, 123). The biographical information in the first paragraph comes from
(1971, 123) and Osuo (2005, 220).
1. The word Goō means "protecting the Emperor."
Hakuro (白鷺), also pronounced as shirasagi, means white egret. Himeji Castle, which dates back to the 14th
century, has the name of Shirasagi Castle or Hakuro Castle. The squadron's
pronunciation of Hakuro comes from several Japanese sources including the
following article from Sankei News dated May 23, 2017: "Hakuro-tai no tokkō
ni shiryō de semaru: Himeji-shi heiwa shiryōkan de ihin nado 200-ten tenji"
(Approaching the special attacks of Hakuro Squadrons through source material:
200 objects displayed at Himeji City Peace Museum) <https://www.sankei.com/region/news/170523/rgn1705230024-n1.html>
(January 13, 2020).
2. Shinshū refers to Japan and literally means
Matsugi, Fujio, ed. 1971. Kaigun tokubetsu kōgekitai no isho (Last letters of Navy Special Attack Corps).
Tōkyō: KK Bestsellers.
Osuo, Kazuhiko. 2005. Tokubetsu kōgekitai no kiroku (kaigun
hen) (Record of special attack corps (Navy)). Tōkyō: Kōjinsha.