Yaeko Sugama Weldon was born in 1925 in Tokorozawa, Japan, a small town then with dirt streets. She was 16 years old when the U.S. entered the war following the Pearl Harbor attack. After the war, in 1958, she married an American serviceman stationed near her town, then moved to the U.S., settling in Joliet, Illinois, and occasionally visited Chicago’s Japantown. Many years later she moved to St. Louis, Missouri, near her daughter Linda’s family.
Yaeko passed away in 2012.
Linda Austin grew up listening to her mother’s stories and finally got to work writing a memoir for her mother after a family friend took the first steps. “The most difficult part was writing in my mother’s voice so that readers would be able to hear her speaking her life story.” Linda resides in St. Louis, Missouri.