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Jim Kanno, one of country's first Japanese American mayors and a founder of Fountain Valley, dies at 91

Jim Kanno, one of country's first Japanese American mayors and a founder of Fountain Valley, dies at 91

Jim Kanno, who spent what should have been his final high school years confined to a World War II-era internment camp but went on to become one of America’s first Japanese American mayors as an early-day politician in Orange County, has died at the age of 91.

Stripped of his freedom and forced to live behind barbed wire in an Arizona relocation camp, Kanno burned with indignity but ultimately chose to work to unite rather than separate people, family and friends said. In 1957 — years after the war — he helped turn the farmland of central Orange County into a new city named Fountain Valley and then became the young town’s first mayor.

Kanno, who died July 15 in Santa Ana...

EDITION: California | U.S. & World
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