Former Chapter President Hinkins witnesses WWII act of forgiveness

CCIM Designee Witnesses WWII Act of Forgiveness

Posted September 1st 2015

Mark Hinkins, CCIM, accompanies his father to Japan to participate in a 70-year reconciliation.

British Petty Officer George Hinkins saved many lives on May 9, 1945, when he sent the gun crew below deck and faced a Japanese kamikaze pilot while firing a gun singlehandedly on the deck of the aircraft carrier, HMS Formidable. The 34-year-old father lost his life as did Kurose Yoshinari, 22, who used his plane and himself as a weapon.

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Mark Hinkins, CCIM, (foreground) accompanied his father, David Hinkins, (left background) on his journey to Japan to meet the brother of the pilot who killed his father during World War II.

Seventy years later, his son, David Hinkins, and the pilot’s brother, Kurose Muneyoshi, reconciled the loss of two family members on Aug. 24 in Tokyo during a meeting coinciding with the 70th anniversary of the end of World War II. Mark Hinkins, CCIM, accompanied his father, David, and mother, Maureen, on their journey to Japan.

“I wished to witness firsthand the symbolic meeting of two families coming together in peace and reconciliation, so that I may share the story with my 10-year-old son, Tristan, and future generations,” says Mark Hinkins, 2016 CCIM regional vice president and president of Hinkins Real Estate Analytics in Walnut Creek, Calif. “In the past few weeks, I have fully realized and understood the bravery of my grandfather. I always thought World War II was so far back in history. This meeting between my father and Kurose Muneyoshi allowed me to reach through time. When I shook Kurose’s hand, I touched a moment when my grandfather existed.”

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Fuji News Network filmed the meeting of David Hinkins (right) and Kurose Muneyoshi (left) that reconciled the two families riven by death and war 70 years ago.

Mark’s father, David, was only four months old when his father died. Years later at a British Navy reunion, David met members of the HMS Formidable gun crew, who, for 60 years, tried to persuade the British government to recognize George’s bravery. Four months ago, David answered a British Broadcast Corp. (BBC) call for stories to commemorate the 70th anniversary of ending World War II. A BBC journalist interviewed David about his father and the Japanese pilot on TV and radio broadcasts. After the first BBC broadcast, the Japanese government contacted David with the name of the kamikaze pilot and the information that he had a brother living in Japan. That began David’s journey to meet the pilot’s brother and reconcile the two families.

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Kurose Muneyoshi (right) and David Hinkins (left) reconciled their two families 70 years after Kurose’s brother killed himself and George Hinkins during World War II.

“I’ve learned that it’s never too late to forgive someone,” says Mark Hinkins. “We were provided with a path to forgiveness that led our two families to meet with each other, and we plan to continue that relationship. It was not just a journey for my father, my mother, and me. The journey has included the rest of my family and my friends, including those with CCIM Institute. Through my posts to Facebook, about 20 people came on my journey, felt my emotions, and responded to me in real time.”

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See the original interview in Japan.

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