Last Words

Father, the time for me to demonstrate my true worth has come.

As a son of Japan and as your child, I will die in a praiseworthy manner for the Japanese Empire.

The people of Japan, who are now faced with a decisive battle that will determine the fate of the Empire, must all go beyond life and death, and solely devote themselves fully to the achievement of their duty to protect the Empire.

I pray that you will rejoice in the fact that you had a child to send to the decisive battle on this occasion.

Due to your age, you must have many worries, but I hope that you will live in good health together with Older Sister.

You must be hoping that I had lived a bit longer and that you could have at least seen your grandchild’s face.

Nevertheless, I believe that to have this place to die is the best for me. Following the way of a warrior and a commissioned officer of the Imperial Army, I set out in high spirits, without attachment, while believing in the certain victory of the Empire.

I have nothing to regret. I only ask that you will rejoice in my death in action.

Well then, please do take good care of yourself.

While deeply revering the figure of my father who struggles
to hold back tears in his aged eyes and to wear a smile on his face.

November 18
To: Father

Masamitsu Kataoka Mikoto  
Captain, Japanese Army
Killed in Action on December 5, 1944, in Leyte Gulf,
Leyte Island, Philippines
Born in Kikuka-mura, Kamoto-gun, Kumamoto Prefecture
Age: 27