On a WWII battlefield in Italy, Nicholas Iosue, an Italian American from Illinois, was severely wounded. He awakened in a racially-segregated field hospital for wounded Japanese American (Nisei) soldiers of the famed 442nd Regimental Combat Team (RCT). Battlefield medics had mistakenly believed the name on his dog-tags, Iosue, was ethnically Japanese.
By the time the hospital discovered the mistake and offered to move Nicholas to a Caucasian-only field hospital, he had bonded with the Nisei who had compassionately embraced and made him one of the gang. Thus began a life-long friendship that transcended any differences in race or ethnic origin — true to the spirit of what it means to be an American.
Nicholas’ son, Carmine Iosue, recounts this story that he learned well from his father. It provides us an example of how we could all live together in greater harmony through compassion and respect for one another regardless of differences in race or ethnic origin.