Did You Know That Wes Is 1/2 Asian?
May is Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month and I wanted to share a little something with you for folks who don’t know me I’m actually half Asian.
This month is a celebration of the Asian and Pacific Islander Heritage and I wanted to share my heritage with you. My mother is from Okinawa Japan and my father was right here in the United States. He was actually from Southeast Oklahoma from a small town called Albion.
My father was working for a government contractor when he met my mom in the sixties. After a while when his Japanese was just ok he asked her out on a date and the rest is history. My mother's mother was very mad and was opposed to the marriage. How could this guy from the United States take her girl away half across the planet?
My mother became a naturalized citizen in the 70's right around the time I was born. Growing up in primary school in the little town of Wake Village was mildly difficult because you were the tan boy. But that uniqueness of where my mother was from was also very interesting for the kids that I went to school with. They always had questions about what it was like to live in Japan.
Over the years we have made many trips back to Okinawa, once when I was six and again when I was 18, and my most recent trip was made as a honeymoon after I got married in 2006.
My wife Laura, and I on the last night of our trip to Okinawa. Notice the fact we have no shoes on in the restaurant.
In this photo, you can see my mother, my sister, my wife Laura, and me. This was taken in 2006 on the streets of Okinawa during a celebration in which Okinawa residents that have moved off come back to celebrate the island.
Being 1/2 Asian has been very cool getting to experience my multi-culture heritage. I have three uncles, a few cousins, and my grandmother who is 103.