Three Japanese-Filipino siblings were recently reconnected to their Japanese father, who was forced to leave them during World War II to serve the Imperial Japanese Army in the Philippines and eventually was repatriated to Japan.

Unfortunately, the "reunion," which happened on Dec. 3, had to take place at his grave in the Okinawa city of Itoman, with the siblings, now in their 70s, regretting not actively searching for their father, Taruji Fusato, early on when he was still alive.

The Dec. 1-4 Okinawa trip of Salome Belino, 78, Jaime Fusato, 76, and Caridad Comez, 71, is part of a desire to regain their Japanese identity, being among the eight children of Fusato with Martiniana Rodriguez, a native of Palawan province in the western Philippines.