Member-supported news for Southern California
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
Available On Air Stations
Support for LAist comes from:

Nearly 2,000 trek to California desert for 50th anniversary of Manzanar pilgrimage

As a child, Mariko Lockhart tried to ask her family about life at Manzanar. That's where her mother, aunt and grandmother were incarcerated along with more than 10,000 other people of Japanese descent during World War II. 

The three of them were living in Glendale when the Japanese attacked Pearl Harbor. Within months, President Franklin D. Roosevelt authorized the forced wartime relocation of ethnic Japanese, mostly those from the West Coast, into camps around the country. Despite this being a momentous chapter in their lives, Lockhart's family members avoided discussing it.

"I think it was part of the feeling at that time that you shouldn’t talk about it. That it was something to be ashamed of," Lockhart said. 

Now that all three women have died, Lockhart has been searching for answers. That's why she joined the annual pilgrimage to Manzanar on April 27. 

You can read more about the pilgrimage at