Hideo joined the Sequoia Stamp Club in 2004. He is not able to attend meetings due to family obligations, but he is a regular attendee at PENPEX and other stamp shows. At the most recent WESTPEX show he was awarded a medal honoring his 50-year membership in the American Philatelic Society (APS).
Hideo has collected stamps since he was seven years old. Over the past 70 years he has collected many different stamp issues, subjects, and topics. Some examples are mint and used US, Socked on the Nose postmarks, U.S. exposition cancels, machine and flag cancels, Duck stamps, perfins, precancels, playing card revenues, and used U.S. plate # singles. All these stamp specialties have been sold or traded for new items that he wanted to collect.
In 1978 he started a new sideline specialty of collecting the 3 different U.S. 16¢ Air Mail Special Delivery stamps which were issued in 1934-6. For over 20 years he searched high and low for everything that he could find on these stamps including covers and collateral material. By 2000 his accumulation of these 3 different AMSD stamps became the largest known collection in the philatelic world. After retiring in 2002 he decided to create a 160 (10 frame) exhibit for competition at the 2003 ARIPEX Stamp Show in Tucson, AZ, which was hosting the American Air Mail Society’s annual convention. He spent hundreds of hours of labor in selecting, assembling, and organizing all the exhibit material and then designing each page, gathering the research information, preparing the text write-up, and then mounting the items. It took him 7 full months to finalize the 160 pages. At its premier showing, his exhibit won two “Grand” awards and two “Gold” awards. He was in complete shock as first-time APS World Series of Philately (WSP) exhibits that have never been displayed seldom win the “Grand” award.
After his “Champion of Champions” entry at the 2003 APS StampShow he decided to send his exhibit on an epic quest – to obtain a “Gold” medal award from all the 30+ different APS WSP Stamp Shows across the country. After 11 years this monumental task was finally completed with the exhibit’s final entry at the 2014 NAPEX Stamp Show. Hideo now has the distinct honor of being the first and only exhibitor to acquire 30 different APS WSP “Gold” medals with the same multi-frame exhibit. He has generously donated a copy of his Grand Award exhibit on the “U.S. Air Mail Special Delivery Issues of 1934-1936” to the Sequoia Stamp Club reference library. This will give club members the unique opportunity to review and study the production and unusual usages of the 16¢ AMSD stamps.
Hideo has now discontinued his collecting passion for the 16¢ AMSD issues and his entire estate of these stamps, covers, and collateral material will be sold. His only remaining philatelic interest is the 1950 California Statehood issue (Scott #997) and the 1958-62 U.S. First Day Medallion Bullseyes. Let’s hope that one day he will create a #997 exhibit and show it at PENPEX or another local Bay Area stamp show.
Hideo’s greatest philatelic discovery remains in his family history album. A 1943 cover that he found in an auction catalog had been written by his mother and mailed from the Japanese detention camp at Amache, CO where his family had been relocated during World War II. He bought the cover and to him it is a treasure that is priceless.