Transportation Secretary Norman Mineta Tragically Passed Away
So sad to announce that one of the country’s highest-profile Asian American political leaders, Norman Mineta, unfortunately, passed away on Tuesday, May 3, 2022, at the age of 90 at his home in Edgewater.
May God rest him in peace and give his family and loved ones enough power to deal with the tragedy.
Well known as a big-city mayor, a congressman, and a Cabinet secretary, Mr. Mineta was interned with his family and many other Japanese Americans throughout World War II.
The legend soon grew in government, becoming a 10-term Democratic congressman from California as well as a cabinet official under Presidents Bill Clinton and George W. Bush.
The heartbreaking news was confirmed by Mineta’s ex-chief of staff who also first announced the sad story. Lawmakers also shared condolences following learning about the news. Sen. Dianne Feinstein said, “A remarkable leader and good friend, Norm Mineta was a mayor, a congressman and served in the Cabinets of both Democratic and Republican presidents.”
Adding, “His experience, expertise, and his devotion to our country will be deeply missed. California and our country lost a true statesman today. My heart goes out to his family and loved ones during this difficult time.”
About 40 years after Norman Mineta’s childhood-scarring experiences in an American internment camp, the Civil Liberties Act of 1988, which he co-sponsored, was marked into law by President Ronald Reagan.
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The news came out just days after Andrew Woolfolk’s cause of death was released. He passed away, announced officially on April 26, 2022, at the age of 71, due to a long-term illness.
Officials authorized $20,000 payments and proper apologies to the survivors and heirs of 120,000 people of Japanese origin who had been incarcerated as possible saboteurs or spies behind Japan’s surprise attack on Pearl Harbor in 1941. Many victims could not be discovered, while $1.6 billion in reparations were finally paid to 82,200 people.
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Heart Ailment Caused Norman Mineta to Passed Away
Based on what John Flaherty, his former chief of staff, said the cause was a heart ailment.
Mineta leaves behind his wife, Danealia Brantner, two sons from his previous marriage, two stepsons, and 11 grandchildren. Born in 1931 in San Jose, Mineta, and his family was among 120,000 Japanese Americans who were forced into internment camps during World War II.
Following the war, he returned to San Jose, graduated from UC Berkeley, and served in the Army as an intelligence officer. In 1971, Mineta was elected mayor of San Jose, the first Asian American to lead a major U.S. city after serving four years on the City Council.
Three years later, he was elected to the first of 10 terms in Congress, where his accomplishments included chairing the House Transportation Committee and championing legislation offering a formal apology and compensation to Japanese Americans who were in internment camps.
Mineta additionally worked as Secretary of Commerce in the final days of President Bill Clinton’s administration. When George Bush won the 2000 presidential election, great Mineta became the only Democrat on the Republican’s cabinet, acting as Secretary of Transportation.
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In 2001, San Jose International Airport was called after the beloved Mineta.
Throughout his term as Transportation Secretary, he guided the department in its reaction to the terror attacks of September 11, 2001, publishing an outstanding order to ground all flights in U.S. airspace. In the next months, Mineta assisted lead the design of the Transportation Security Administration.