Jess Kajiwara, Angel Unaware

In case you missed it, my grandfather suddenly passed away this past Friday. I wrote a short post about it on my music blog:


My grandpa, Jess Kajiwara, and I were very close and he has been an enormous influence on me. He was a troubled and conflicted man, as many indigenous immigrants are. But he was also very nice, loving, friendly, and kind. He partially raised me, and I have lived with him for over 10 years.

Losing him has been the most painful experience of my life so far. For although I have previously lost other close relatives, none that I lived with day-in and day-out like I have with my grandfather.

My heart is shattered and crushed. I knew this was inevitable and I did my best to prepare myself emotionally for it for years. Nevertheless, I am still shocked and crushed. The only comfort I have is knowing that he wants me to continue on and make him proud, to build off of the foundation that he provided for me. For although his life was difficult, it was him overcoming the difficulties that has allowed me to have a better life.

I will surely write more about him in the future, but right now this is all I can muster. I’m still dealing with the shock and grief.



Rob Kajiwara is a Asian/Native American – Hawaiian composer, writer, visual artist, professional baseball player, and human rights activist.

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