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Emotional Reunion with Father after 52 Years

Date Posted: 2000-03-25

A 52-year-old woman, Meriko Yonahara recently reunited her own father after 52 years of separation. The only clue that led her to finding her father was the father’s name. The father, Joseph Benton, was once stationed in Okinawa for four months in 1946. After Mr. Benton left Okinawa, Meriko Yonahara lived with her mother. Merino Yonahara started to look for her father because her daughter, Riemi said that she wanted to know her roots. With Riemi, Meriko Yonahara spent more than two years to searching for the father. They called over 4000 men who have the same name. They also called US bases from Saudi Arabia to Taiwan for information of soldiers. Meriko Yonahara and her daughter were very lucky, and were finally very welcomed by the father and his family. Following her fortunate success, Meriko Yonaha had this advice for other people searching for their long lost parents: “Even I could find my father with such little information. Don’t give up. I want to help those people who want to find their family members.” For more information on help in the search of “lost” fathers, contact Amerasian Network at (098) 938-7825.

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