The Optimist (Abilene, Tex.), Vol. 89, No. 15, Ed. 1, Friday, October 13, 2000 Page: 19 of 27
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Optimist Friday October 13 2000 5B
ing Frat returns to campus
KClub founder and his
college sweetheart come back
to'ACU to share tfyelr lifetime
story with students!'
Opinion Editor" T
;Thc men of Frater Sodalls art excited. They arc
about to meet the social clubs 81-year-old found-
ing father Robert Masaaki Ishizuro a man whose
story reads like a movie script that involves war
'.Intrigue and love.
' ' "Ishi" as he is affectionately known by the
hundreds of Frats who have memorized his name
over the years will appear at the Frats
Homecoming breakfast Saturday with his new
bride j and college sweetheart Anne Ramsey
Ishiguro 'V ' ( . ;' r v
' .IsKlguro's college career aStiialk began'"at
Peppettilne Collcce in Malibu. Calif A ii V '
. There this son of Japanese immigrants
was vice-president of the college
chapter of Frater Sodalls and
even designed the clubs
emblem. ' ..
5- Bttt iii 1943 World1 War II
ras raging 'and U.S.-Japanese;
relations were strained On the
West Coast' the government
into internment camps.
Ishiguros savior was Pepperdine
President M;igh Tiner .who
arranged for Ishiguro to attend
Abilene Christian on scholarship
to escape the camps. Ishlguros'par-
ents weren L so fortunate. '
When Ishiguro arrived in Abilene he
formed a circle of friends who becanje interested
in starting a club. Thats when Ishiguro asked the
Pepperdine Frats for permission to establish the
beta chapter of Frater Sodalis at ACC.
The Frats have been on campus since the clubs
inception in 1943 and about 1000 men have!
joined their brotherhood.
"I was just bowled over when I heard how It
had grown" Ishiguro said.
But while Ishiguro was bonding with his
friends another relationship was sparked.
Ishiguro met his future wife Ann. Ramsey that
; year. She was an art student who took an imme-
diate Interest in him.
- rwhen. 1 saw' him I said 'Boy thats for me"
' Ramsey said. '. . b . '
Ramsey got Ishiguro to pose for. her artwork
and their friendship blossomed. After many long
Walks and deep talks Ishiguro and Ramsey got
Yet the couple didn't marry until just three
months ago. Something happened after this first
engagement that would drastically alter their
"The school called him in and told him we
couldn't see each other anymore" Ann said.
The univcrsitys request for the interracial cou-
ple to stop dating reflected the spreading ami-
Japanese sentiment of the period.
"It was unbelievable that this could happen to
anybody. We were in love" Ramsey said. "Its
inconceivable that things could be so different
The engagement was called off although the
couple still met secretly.
Early in the morning Ramsey would slip out of
her dorm to take walks with Ishiguro. At
.lunchUme'msey'and Ishiguro would sneak off
; campus for picnics at a nearby Creek.
' V After .Ishiguro graduated in 1944 and
moved to Chicago Ishiguro received a mys-
terious letter from her requesting that he
give her picture back Ramsey said.
Ramsey sent no such letter she
'Ishiguro responded saying he
' -wanted the model airplane back
- tjiat he had given Ramsey.
Yet Ramsey said she never
received any letter from
But soon Ishiguro received yet
another letter saying that Ramsey
had given away his model airplane
to another man.
."It worked" Ramsey said. "It
split us up.-"
Ishiguro and Ramsey went their sep
arate1 ways t'marricd and had children never
knovlng"wholhad's.ent the letters.
vRamseyand Ishiguro said they lived happy
family lives'but they never forgot one another.
Ramsey even decorated her home in Japanese
molif. . ."
Time passed and Ramsey's husband passed
away. Ishiguros wifc succumbed to cancer in
September 1999. '
Six months ago Ishiguro gave Ramsey a call
.having only spoken with Ramsey once since their
breakup. ". '
' ''Oh I still love you" Ramsey recalled her
words to Ishiguro. "I've always loved you."
. Ishiguro sold his house gave away his furnl-'
ture and moved to Texas. Ramsey and Ishiguro
married. just three' months ago and now live
together in DeSoto.'
ffT y YBmoIMHBV m
PHOTO C0URTUY Of TIM YANOtU
Robert Ishiguro the founder of ACU's chapter of Frater Sodalls embraces two men who
followed him as presidents of the club in later years. Tim Yandell now a sponsor of
Frater Sodalis and Steve Reynolds former club president visited Ishiguro at his home.
The storybook tale of Mr. and Mrs. Ishiguro
will be made complete with their return t cam-
pus this week.
Ishiguro said he holds no bitterness against the
university. He said that he is indebted. to the
school for the scholarship that saved him from the
Current Frats are speechless when it comes to
describing how they feel about Ishiguros return.
Club president Gary
Bones expressed his honor
at the opportunity to meet
the clubs charter president.
"Words can't really
describe It" said Bones
senior sociology with crim-
inal justice emphasis major
from El Paso. "Hes the one
that started it all. He gave '
these guys a place on cam-
Ishiguro decided to make contact when he vis-
ited the Frats Web site and saw the alumni list-
ings. He e-mailed Frat Brian Nations requesting
that his information be added to the site.
"At first I thought it was a joke" said
Nations senior computer science major from
Van "So 1 did a background check on the e-mail
address and checked with the alumni office on
"It is truly an honor to be able to
tell him that he helped start a
club that would go on to be a
huge influence on the lives of
about 1.0JJJ0 men."
v Brian Nations
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f All of the information checked out so Nations
wrote back and invited him to Homecoming
- Nations said he was thrilled to be the one to
reestablish communication with Ishiguro.
."You don't even know what it means to us to
have this man come back for the first time since
1944" Nations said. "It is truly an honor to be
able to tell him that he helped start a club that
would go on to be a huge
influence on the lives of
about 1000 men."
Frats sponsor Clljlm
Yandell recently made a
trip to meet the legendary
"Hes such a gentle
man." Yandell said.( "Hes
not bitter about anything.
He said we just need to
look to the future."
Yandell said this years Homecoming breakfast
will be a landmark moment In Frater Sodalis his-
tory. "Our breakfast will be especially meaningful"
Yandell said. "She'll come with him and we'll
honor them together."
And so Robert Ishiguro and his wife Anne will
return to Abilene together proving that true love
always wins in the end.
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The Optimist (Abilene, Tex.), Vol. 89, No. 15, Ed. 1, Friday, October 13, 2000, newspaper, October 13, 2000; Abilene, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth101676/m1/19/: accessed July 22, 2018), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Abilene Christian University Library.