Article - Office of College Advancement

Ohlone College Board of Trustees Member Garrett Yee in The Wall Street Journal Article Torn on the Fourth of July

By Jeffrey Zaslow, Friday, June 30, 2006—Reprinted from The Wall Street Journal.

A short portion of the article is available below:

Garrett Yee, with his family.

Fremont, Calif.

In recent years, this city southeast of San Francisco has become one of America's most culturally diverse communities: Its 210,000 residents come from dozens of ethnic groups. Thousands of immigrants from Afghanistan came after the Soviet invasion there in 1979, and thousands more are from Gujarat, India, which suffered a devastating earthquake in 2001. Fremont also has large numbers of Mexican, Japanese and Chinese.

Over lunch recently in Fremont, three generations of the Yee family discussed their sense of patriotism. They're the American melting-pot in microcosm, with roots in Japan, China and Mexico. Both of Lt. Col. Yee's grandmothers were born in the U.S., but lost their U.S. citizenship when they married immigrants from China and Japan in the 1920s. They were victims of federal "exclusion laws" against Asians that weren't lifted until the 1940s.

Lt. Col. Yee expects that this will be a very emotional Independence Day for him, because by the end of July he'll be headed for Iraq. Friends have asked him if he's upset about being sent to war. "On the right shoulder of my uniform, there's an American-flag patch," he says. "I'm reminded every day that I'm serving to protect that flag. I'm proud to do it."

(The full article is available at: http://online.wsj.com/article/SB115162269791494761.html.)

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