Pilots Wrote a Farewell Letter to Be Sent to Their Parents Upon the Completion of Their Mission
In their final days, kamikaze pilots were told to write farewell letters to their loved ones. This would be their final act before performing their duty as kamikaze. Below, read the letter from Captain Adachi Takuya to his parents:
“Honorable Mother and Father,
The difficulty of the journey you made to see me was clearly evident in your disheveled hair and in the hollows under your eyes-it made me want to bend my knees and worship before you. In the wrinkles on your brows was vivid testimony of the pains you took to raise me. Words could not express my feelings, and what little I did say was superficial in the extreme.
Yet, although acutely conscious of how little time we had, I saw in your eyes and in your gaze all you wanted to say but couldn’t.
When you took my hand and passed it over your chilblains, I experienced a sense of profound peacefulness, unlike anything I have experienced since joining up -like being a baby again and longing for the warmth of a mother’s love. It is because I bask in the beauty of your deep devotion that I can martyr myself for you-for in death I will sleep in the world of your love. Washed down with my tears was the sushi you prepared with such loving care, for it was like putting your love to my lips. Though I ate but little, it was the most delicious meal of my life.
Honorable Mother, even if I was never able to fully accept the love you gave me, I received so much wisdom from you. And Father, your silent words are carved deeply into my heart. With this, I will be able to fight together with you both. Even if I should die, it will be with a peaceful spirit.
I mean this with all my heart.
The war zone is where these beautiful emotions are put to the test. If death means a return to this world of love, there is no need for me to fear. There is nothing left to do but press on and fulfill my duty.
At 1600 hours our meeting was over. Watching you walk out the gate, I quietly waved goodbye.”
Captain Adachi Takuya, Kamikaze Special Attack Group No. i Seikita. Killed in the Okinawa area on April 28, 1945, age 23.