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Lily Yuriko Havey

Lily Yuriko Havey was born in Los Angeles where her Japanese immigrant parents settled in the 1920’s. She and her family were incarcerated in American internment camps in California and Colorado during World War II. After the war her family moved to Salt Lake City. She graduated from the New England Conservatory of Music, and pursued an MFA in Fine Arts at the University of Utah. She taught high school for thirteen years before establishing a stained glass business which she operated for over 30 years. When she heard about Vietnam veterans suffering from PTSD and being treated successfully through the arts—music, dance, and painting—she wondered whether some of her ongoing anxiety might stem from her traumatic war time experience, and began painting camp scenes from memory. These paintings were incorporated into a book, Gasa Gasa Girl Goes to Camp: A Nisei Youth Behind a Barbed Wire Fence, a creative memoir about her four camp years. She continues to give presentations about her book and experiences, and leads workshops at high schools throughout Utah.


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