Norman Mineta, 1st Japanese-American Member of U.S. Cabinet, Dies

Politics Society

Washington, May 3 (Jiji Press)--Norman Mineta, the first Japanese-American appointed to a U.S. cabinet position, died Tuesday of heart failure at his home in Maryland. He was 90.

Born in San Jose, California, on Nov. 12, 1931, Mineta was forced to live in a Japanese internment camp in Wyoming for about three years during World War II.

After his university graduation, he served in the Army and was elected to the San Jose City Council in 1967. He then became the city's mayor, serving for four years from 1971.

As a member of the U.S. House of Representatives from 1975 to 1995, Mineta worked to restore the honor of Japanese-Americans, who were sent to internment camps during the war.

His efforts led to the signing by then President Ronald Reagan of the Civil Liberties Act of 1988 and the U.S. government's apology and compensation for them.

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