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Ashes of Japanese Pilot Scattered

October 11, 1998

BROOKINGS, Ore. (AP) _ Some of the ashes of the only Japanese pilot to drop a bomb on the U.S. mainland during World War II have been scattered at the spot where he made his 1942 bombing run.

Flying a reconnaissance plane from a surfaced submarine off the West Coast, Nobuo Fujita dropped the bomb outside Brookings with the intention of starting a huge forest fire and diverting U.S. efforts to fight the war.

But typical Oregon coastal rain and fog limited the incendiary bomb to a tiny blaze that was easily controlled.

Fujita, who died Sept. 30, 1997, at age 85, spent the final decades of his life serving as a symbol of peace.

``He was so very sorry. He had very, very deep regrets,″ said Ernie Bowers, 61, a close friend who met Fujita in 1990 when the former pilot visited Brookings.

Fujita made four visits altogether, including a trip in 1992 to mark the 50th anniversary of the attack during which he planted a redwood tree at the bomb site.

Last year, the Brookings City Council declared Fujita an honorary citizen.

Some of his ashes were scattered at the bomb site on Oct. 4 by family members and friends.

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