Disability History Japan

One-legged pilot training to rejoin unit [From The Japan Times 1944]

“[A]ttention may have been attracted by the pathetic yet manly sight of a young non-commissioned officer in the white uniform of an army patient, handling the plane and operating the rudder bar with his artificial limb. The young soldier is Sgt. Maj. Mitsumasa Seo, who, though minus one leg, is awaiting the day when he may again resume his service with the Army Air Corps, reports the Asahi.”

From The Japan Times

Monday January 17th 1944 (reprinted Jan 6th 2019)

Visitors to the Military Preparation School in Tokyo might have seen an old-type fighter lying in a corner of the school grounds. Their attention may have been attracted by the pathetic yet manly sight of a young non-commissioned officer in the white uniform of an army patient, handling the plane and operating the rudder bar with his artificial limb. The young soldier is Sgt. Maj. Mitsumasa Seo, who, though minus one leg, is awaiting the day when he may again resume his service with the Army Air Corps, reports the Asahi.

Looking forward to the day when he may again be accepted as an army flier, the sergeant-major redoubled his efforts by undergoing all sorts of physical exercises usually imposed upon members of the Army Air Corps. At last, the authorities of the First Army Hospital, where the sergeant-major was receiving medical attention, were impressed by his ardor and assured him that he might return to the Army Air Corps some day. They referred him to the Army Air Service Headquarters so that the sergeant-major might sit for a physical examination as a candidate.

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