SASEBO NAVAL BASE, Japan — A co-chairman of Sasebo’s Black History Month Committee said the observances they are sponsoring this month are important, but his vision is much broader.

“It’s very important we have Black History Month,” explained Senior Chief Petty Officer Wendell James, Sasebo’s postal division officer, “but I’ll tell you what I’d like to see someday is a multi-cultural day, or week or month. This would be a time we could work together and draw people from all ethnic backgrounds and get together to share some of the history unique to each culture, and serve foods from each culture.”

James and other Black History Month committee members manned a grill last week despite a downpour to raise money for a scholarship at Ernest J. King High School.

James said the committee awarded a $500 scholarship to a King senior last year. They are aiming for $1,000 this year.

Also part of the month’s observances, James said, is an educational campaign produced by pupils of Sasebo and Jack N. Darby elementary schools that is being broadcast on Armed Forces Network, Sasebo Detachment, television and radio stations.

Black History Month is not only for black people, James said.

For more information, call James at DSN 252-3767, or e-mail

Pacific Black History Month events

Misawa Air Base, Japan:

Monday: Black Film Festival, Tohoku Enlisted Club, 11:30 a.m. Call DSN 226-6135.Tuesday: “A Sweet Taste of Soul” Bakeoff at the Misawa Base Exchange mall at 11:30 a.m.Friday: Gospel Concert at the base chapel starting at 6 p.m. Call DSN 226-4630. Comedy Show at Tohoku Enlisted Club at 7 p.m.Saturday: “Harlem Nights” special club event. Call DSN 226-6121 for times and more information.Feb. 22: “Showtime at Misawa” talent contest at Tohoku Enlisted Club 6 p.m. Call DSN 226-2097.Feb. 24: NAACP Membership Drive/United Negro College Fund Fundraiser, Misawa Base Exchange Mall. Call DSN 226-4128.Feb. 25: Fashion Show, Tohoku Enlisted Club, 6 p.m. Call DSN 226-6302.Feb. 26: Black History Month Closing Banquet, Tohoku Enlisted Club, 6 p.m. Call DSN 226-6531.Feb. 28: Black Film Festival, Tohoku Enlisted Club, 11:30 a.m. Call DSN 226-6135.Atsugi Naval Air Facility, Japan:

Black History Month displays will be exhibited at the base library throughout the month.Camp Zama, Japan:

Activities have concluded.Yokosuka Naval Base, Japan:

From 5:30 p.m. until 7:30 p.m. on Fridays the Celebrating America: Study of African-American Life and History is planned at the Fleet Recreation Room 336. For more information call DSN 243-6978 and ask for Annette Mandley.Friday: Beginning at noon and lasting until 6 p.m., there will be a College Fair and Greek Step Show in the C-2 Auditorium. Call Annette Mandley at DSN 243-6978 for more information.Feb. 23: From 7:30 a.m. until noon at Yokosuka Middle School, there will be a Career Day. Call Charles Dansby at DSN 243-8073 for more information.Feb. 26: From 10 a.m. until 2 p.m., there will be an African-American Art Festival in the Admiralty Room of the Officers Club. Call Eric Barnes at DSN 243-7247 for more information.Feb. 26: The Liberty Ball is from 6 p.m. until 1 the Officers Club Admiralty Room. The cost if $40 per person. Call DSN 269-6349 for more information.Feb. 27: From 11 a.m. until 1:30 p.m., there will be an African-American History Month Observance Luncheon in the Admiralty Room of the Officers Club. The cost is $13 per person. The guest speaker will be Rear Adm. Rick Ruehe, Commander, U.S. Naval Forces Japan. Call Eric Barnes at DSN 243-7247 for more information.Camp Fuji, Japan:

Black History Month displays will be exhibited at the base library throughout the month.Iwakuni Marine Corps Air Station, Japan:

Friday: The Foundation of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People will host an educational event from 10 a.m. until 11:30 a.m. about the NAACP movement and other contributions of African-Americans. The event will be held at the Iwakuni Marine Corps Air Station Theater. After the observance, the base mass halls will serve a lunch menu in honor of Black History Month. Col. Michael A. Dyer, base commander, has designated this event as an alternate work site for base Marines and employees. Call DSN 253-5314 for more information.Sasebo Naval Base, Japan:

From 11 a.m. until 1 p.m. on Tuesdays in February, Black History Month Committee participants grill outside in front of the Navy Exchange Store near the intersection of Ohio Boulevard and California Drive. The cookout features sausages, pork chops, ribs, hamburgers, chicken wings and quarters. Profits go to a scholarship fund for an Ernest J. King High School senior. Last year, the scholarship was $500; the goal this year is $1,000.Saturday: At 7 p.m., Carol Maxwell with support of the Black History Committee will perform a gospel play titled “The Glory Train” in the base Community and Education Center, free of charge.Feb. 22: At 8 p.m., MWR is sponsoring a “Live Comedy Showcase” in observance. Stateside comics will perform at Galaxies Club for this free event.Feb. 26: The Black History Month Banquet begins at 6 p.m. at Sasebo Naval Base’s Harbor View Club, Upper and Lower Sakata Rooms. Tickets are on sale now for $20. Tickets include buffet dinner, door prizes, a disc jockey, dancing and a “free beer” open bar. The guest speaker is Lt. Cmdr. Patrice Robinson, officer-in-charge of the Navy Branch Medical Clinic. Her speech is called “The Niagara Movement.” The tickets can be purchased from Black History Month Committee Co-Chairman Chief Petty Officer Wendell James. Call DSN 252-3767, or e-mail James at, for more information.Okinawa

The 1st Marine Aircraft Wing and Marine Corps Base Camp S.D. Butler will be holding an African American/Black History Month banquet at 7 p.m. on Feb. 26 at the Butler Officer’s Club in the Plaza Housing area. Cocktail hour begins at 6 p.m. and dinner includes beef, chicken and vegetarian offerings. Tickets are $20 per person and the dress code is civilian business. For tickets and information, contact Gunnery Sgt. Cheeks at 645-2058, Staff Sgt. Brownfield at 645-3555 or Staff Sgt. Flores at 636-3410.U.S. Naval Base Guam:

Friday: At noon on Feb. 18, the African-American Heritage Committee and the USS Frank Cable are hosting a Black History Month Celebration Luncheon at Club Rumors. Call DSN 343-2545 Ext: 7882, or DSN 339-5266/3175, for more information.Sunday: Family Fun Day at Game works in Tumon is from 2 p.m. through 7 p.m. on Feb. 20. Tickets are $15 for unlimited game play. Ten percent of all proceeds are donated to the Black Heritage Council.Andersen Air Force Base, Guam:

Friday: Boogie Nights at Club Kamikaze in Tumon starts at 9 p.m. Feb. 18. The event is a ’70s and ’80s dance party. The cost is $10 at the door, $5 for those in costume. Proceeds benefit the Black Heritage Council and tsunami relief.Sunday: An Employment Assistance Budgeting Course starts at 10 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. in Feb. 20 at the Family Support Center. Call DSN 366-8136 to register.Sunday: Starting at 10 a.m. on Feb. 20, the Black Film Festival Part II begins, including four movies, and 15-minute intermission, at Mehan Theater, sponsored by the Black Heritage Council.Feb. 21: Kids Day at Arc Light Park from noon to 4 p.m. is Feb. 21. Face painting, food booths, prizes and games are available free at Andersen Air Base.Feb. 22 there will be a Trivia Bowl at Andersen Elementary and Andersen Middle schools.Feb. 23 and 24: Squadron-wide black history, Lunchtime Trivia Bowls from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Bowling alley, Burger King, Mary’s Place at Top of the Rock Club, Base Exchange and Zorba’s the Greek. Winners will be announced Feb. 28.Feb. 26: The Black History Month Banquet is at 6:30 p.m. at Holiday Inn Resort on Feb. 26 on Guam. Tickets are $30 per person. Last day to buy is Feb. 21. Call commercial 671-653-0980 for more information.Feb. 27: The Second Annual Freedom Festival is from noon to 5 p.m. Feb. 27 at Ypao Beach on Guam. Soul-food cook-off, prizes.Camp Walker, Taegu, South Korea:

At 12:30 p.m. Feb. 17 at the Evergreen Community Club, there is the “Black History Month Observance” featuring guest speaker Col. Michael J. Harris, commander of 8th Personnel Command. Call DSN 764-8972 for more information.Osan Air Base, Songtan, South Korea:

Feb. 20, at 6 p.m. at the Challenger enlisted club, there’s an “open-mic contest” featuring readings of poetry, other writings, by African-Americans.At 10 a.m. Feb. 21 at the base fitness center, a five-on-five basketball tournament.Feb. 27, 6 p.m., Challenger enlisted club, final contest for “open-mic night,” with prizes awarded to winners.From 11 a.m. until 1 p.m. Feb. 28 the African-American Heritage Month luncheon is slated at the Officers Club. The guest speaker is Col. Michelle Gardner-Ince.Call DSN 784-2989 for more information on the Osan Air Base events listed.

Complied by Greg Tyler, Juliana Gittler, Jennifer H. Svan, Erik Slavin, Fred Zimmerman and Franklin Fisher.


Stars and StripesPacific edition, Monday, February 14, 2005

Folks used to seeing familiar faces playing for their favorite high school basketball teams might have noted a slight change of pace this weekend.

Some coaches held out their starters, some to avoid the risk of injury, others to try different lineup combinations. Some sought the best possible chemistry. More wanted to see how subs could handle clutch situations.

All that was part of an effort over the weekend by Department of Defense Dependents Schools basketball coaches from Misawa to Okinawa to determine their best lineups for next week’s Far East tournaments.

“Right now, we’re carrying 12 players and we can only take 10” to the Girls Class AA Tournament at Seoul American, coach Ken Hudson said after his Kadena Panthers fell 68-67 to Itoman, a Japanese team, in Okinawa-American League play Friday at the Panther Pit.

His team probably could have won the game, Hudson said, if he’d stuck with just his starting lineup and a couple of subs. But this game was about his last-in-line players proving themselves.

“We had to give up a little something and give those others a chance to make the traveling squad,” Hudson said. “And we still made a pretty good run at it.”

Hudson’s boys counterpart, Robert Bliss, hoped to see how well his Panthers could manage without star junior Z’aire Jackson, scoring in the 30s and rebounding in the 20s all season, for much of the game.

Jackson had 29 points and 12 rebounds, but in only 18 minutes, as Kadena rallied from a 13-point deficit to defeat Itoman 83-73.

“I was happy the way the team played without him in the third quarter,” in which Kadena outscored the Raging Billows 23-15. “That will be important (at Far East). Somebody needs to take the pressure off of him. We need more consistency.”

The Boys Class AA tournament is Feb. 21-26, as is the girls, with Kadena and Kubasaki co-hosting on Okinawa.

Coach Bob Driggs of defending Girls Class AA champion Kubasaki said he’d like to have two extra players, since the round-robin schedule has some teams playing three games in a day.

“We just have to get healthy,” Driggs said of a team he calls “a bit bruised. It would be nice if we could carry 12 on the roster.”

His girls beat Oroku 87-73 on Friday, while Kubasaki’s boys trounced Gushikawa 96-71. Dragons boys coach Chris Sullivan also fears injuries, given Kubasaki’s home clash next Friday with Kadena — the final tuneup for both teams heading into Far East.

“Like any coach, I’m nervous about injuries,” he said. “We hope that we’re peaking and playing better as the weeks progress. We hope we’re playing at our best two weeks from now.”

The ordeal experienced this weekend by the Japan League-leading Yokota girls is what Ric Cabral hopes will prepare his Panthers for Class AA — they traveled 800 miles by bus to and from Misawa Air Base and played four games in a 20-hour stretch, winning all four.

“That’s what’s going to happen at Far East,” Cabral said.

His Panthers opened by downing Matthew C. Perry 53-28, a Class A team, using mostly subs and a handful of JV players.

Then came three tough contests, 63-53 and 69-63 victories over host Robert D. Edgren and a 66-57 win over the Misawa Jets base team. Those two squads showed a variety of defensive looks that “rattled” the Panthers initially before they regained composure and exhibited solid execution, Cabral said.

Hampering the development and preparation for Korean teams was an unprecedented two-week break in the Korean-American Interscholastic Activities Conference due to the Lunar New Year.

So Taegu American’s girls team, preparing for the Girls Class A tournament Feb. 21-25 in Pusan, South Korea, were grateful for the chance to play the Osan Defenders of the Korea Traveling League post-level circuit. Osan beat Taegu 61-51.

“Overall, the girls played well, but still made a lot of mistakes,” coach Michelle Chandler said. “Hopefully we can pull it together” for the KAIAC tournament Feb. 18-19 and Class A.

One Class A team that enjoyed a confidence boost was E.J. King, which wrapped up a 14-9 season on Saturday by edging Zama American 54-52 — the Cobras’ first victory over a Class AA team this season.

“This win will give us an extra boost of confidence as we head into Far East next week,” Cobras coach Bridget Vertin said.

St. Mary’s wraps up perfect mat season

Tokyo’s St. Mary’s International Titans can’t participate in the Far East High School Wrestling Tournament later this week at Yokota Air Base, Japan, but they ran away with the Kanto Plain Association of Secondary Schools Tournament title, capturing six individual golds at their home gym — and impressing their DODDS opposition.

“They showed their stuff,” said Zama American coach Ian Harlow of a Titans team that won all five of its Kanto Plain dual meets and all four tournaments it entered this season, including last weekend’s Nile C. Kinnick Invitational “Beast of the Far East.”

“It was their house, they have a great group and they wanted to give their seniors and [retiring coach Jon Rhodes] a good sendoff. They’re a tough team,” Harlow said.

In an upset, St. Mary’s Sonny Libero (158) took down Kinnick’s Yamato Cibulka, who’d beaten Libero four times this season.

“I voted for him [Libero] as Outstanding Wrestler because of it,” Kinnick coach Robby Rhinehart said. St. Mary’s Mark Striegl (141) took the honor instead.

St. Mary’s scored 95 points, followed by American School In Japan and Kinnick with 49 each. Yokota placed fourth (46), followed by Zama (36) and Christian Academy In Japan (24).

Two Yokota wrestlers won individual gold, Jeremiah Saffold (101) and Zach Dopslaf (180). Kinnick’s Joey Wood (168) and Zama’s David Burnett (215) each repeated their tournament titles of a year ago.

St. Mary’s and other international schools are no longer eligible for the DODDS Far East, as ruled by the DODDS-Pacific Far East Activities Council in September.

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