Colonel Jimmie Kanaya


a JAVA Memorial Scholarship for High School Seniors

JAVA is profiling the sacrifices and contributions made by the men and women that our JAVA Memorial Scholarship program honors. Today's issue highlights the Colonel Jimmie Kanaya Scholarship in honor of JAVA member, COL Jimmie Kanaya, a three war veteran. The Kanaya scholarship is sponsored by his wife, Lynn. It is one of the $1,500 JAVA Memorial Scholarships that will be awarded to a high school senior who will be entering a two or four-year college or university in the fall. Application information can be found at the end of the article as well as on the JAVA website. 

Colonel Jimmie Kanaya, U.S Army (Ret). Photo Courtesy of Lynn Kanaya.

This scholarship honors Colonel Jimmie Kanaya, U.S. Army (Ret), a three-war, highly decorated veteran who served over 34 years in the military. While assigned to the 100th Battalion /442nd Regimental Combat Team, Kanaya became part of a cadre to create combat medical services. Later while serving in France with the 100th Bn /442nd RCT, he was captured while evacuating the wounded during the Rescue of the Lost Battalion and remained a POW until the end of World War II. Kanaya continued his Army service after WWII. He was part of the Military Intelligence Service (MIS) during the Allied Occupation of Japan serving as a translator/interrogator at the Far East Command. During the Korean War, he continued in the Allied Translator and Interpreter Section. In Vietnam, Kanaya was attached to the Medical Assistance Advisory Group working with the South Vietnamese to upgrade combat medical services.

Throughout all his years of service, Kanaya was committed to the need for continuing education. For 22 years Kanaya took courses near his Army postings and in time earned enough credits to graduate from college and also received a master's degree a few years later. He never gave up. Colonel Kanaya retired in 1974 from his last position as Deputy Commandant, Medical Education and Training Campus / Fort Sam Houston, Texas. His service, as with many other 442 veterans, would pave the way for future generations of Japanese Americans serving in the military. Colonel Kanaya passed away at the age of 99 and was laid to rest at Arlington National Cemetery.

JAVA Scholarship Eligibility and Applications


  • Descendants of those who served in the 100th Infantry Battalion, the 442nd Regimental Combat Team, the Military Intelligence Service, the 1399th Engineer Construction Battalion, 522nd Field Artillery Battalion or  descendants of Japanese American soldiers who served during World War II other United States military units, including the Women’s Army Corps or Army Nurses Corps are eligible and encouraged to apply. 
  • Current members of JAVA whose membership began prior to April 1, 2021 are eligible and encouraged to apply. Children of current JAVA members are also eligible and encouraged to apply if the applicant’s parent or guardian was a member of JAVA prior to April 1, 2021. 
  • Past or present members of the Army’s 100th Battalion, 442nd Infantry Regiment, ROTC, or U.S. Marine Corps Platoon Leaders Course are eligible and encouraged to apply for the Senator Daniel K. Inouye Memorial Scholarship. Applicants should demonstrate their lifelong commitment to uniformed and public service leadership for the nation.



  • Applicants should first review published rules and forms.
  • Applications and supporting documents must be electronically submitted no later than 11:59 p.m. on Sunday, April 30, 2023, to Applications not received by that date or that fail to meet the submission requirements will NOT be considered. Applicants will be notified of a decision by early June 2023.
  • Awards will be presented at a JAVA scholarship awards ceremony on Saturday, July 8, 2023. 

2023 JAVA Memorial Scholarship Program Overview here.

2023 U.S. Senator Daniel K. Inouye Memorial Scholarship here.

2023 Ishio Founder's Scholarship here.

2023 Kiyoko Tsuboi Taubkin Legacy Scholarship here.

2023 JAVA Memorial Scholarships here.

Questions or Suggestions: Please contact Neet Ford, at

Japanese American Veterans Association:  Address: P.O. Box 341198, Bethesda, MD 20827 I