Lillian Kazue (Kawai) Mizumori

Brick #1486   Wall Location  Column: 68   Row: 19

Lillian was born in Seattle, WA July 6, 1921. In her youth, she was initially sent to Japan along with her brother and sister for education. They all returned in the late 1930's to Clallam Bay, WA where her father was a rail worker. She graduated from Clallam Bay HS.

Though the family returned to Japan in 1941, she insisted on remaining in the US working at a vegetable stand. Her dream was to make a career as a clothing designer.

When Internment was ordered in 1942, she was sent to the Puyallup Fair grounds where they were housed in the stables. Subsequently, she was sent to Minidoka (Idaho).

She eventually married George in Minidoka March 30, 1945. As he was a "YES-NO", he was not released until December 1945. While she would have wanted to be released to Chicago to follow her dream of designing clothes, she was now pregnant with no assurance of a job. They returned to Seattle.

Upon their return to Seattle, they stayed with friends (Imanakas) until they found an opportunity to manage the Warminster Hotel. George got a job as a steelworker. Eventually, they bought and managed the Donald Hotel in Belltown followed by the Ryland Apartments on Capitol Hill. Later, they owned and ran Capitol Hill Market on 12th Avenue. When her children were old enough to all attend school, she took jobs as a seamstress at Seattle clothing factories (including Pacific Trail).

Her passion was sewing and often made clothes for her children without need of a pattern. Even in her senior years, she would occasionally perform custom alterations as a side business.

She managed to raise 6 children, Roger Kenichi, Victor Isamu, Ronald Yutaka, Daniel K, Sheri Jane Yayoi, and Nancy Ann Aiko. Her greatest satisfaction and pride came as all received college degrees and achieved noted success in their respective careers. They were also survived by 9 grandchildren.

Assembly Centers
  • Puyallup
  • Minidoka
Brick Donors
  • Roger Mizumori