Bill Hosokawa in 2005, sitting next to a caricature at the Denver Press Club
Bill Hosokawa died of natural causes at age 92 in Sequim, Washington, where he lived with his daughter. He was a pioneering Japanese American journalist, author and diplomat who lived in Denver for 60 years.
Those are the facts of Bill's life and death. But there's lots more to Bill than just the facts.
I wrote an obituary for Bill that will run in the Pacific Citizen, the newspaper of the Japanese American Citizens League, the APA civil rights organization. Bill was a leader within the JACL, and a columnist for the PC for decades. I'm the editorial board chair for the newspaper, and a national board member of JACL, and I knew Bill because we'd run into each other at many events in Denver. So it made sense for me to write the obit for the PC.
But I also owed it to Bill to write about him because he was a role model for me as a writer -- we both wrote columns for Denver's Japanese community newspaper (he kept his up long after I ran out of juice and got too busy). I wrote about Bill's influence on my career years ago, in one of my columns.