Dear Editor:

I don’t take pleasure in writing this but feel I should express what I (a septuagenarian) and many others in the AJA community think about the Keiro situation.

To be blunt, everything regarding the proposed sale of Keiro smells. It is a sad situation when a great institution has stooped so low to make a “back-door” sale, much to the shock and disappointment of virtually everyone in the AJA community.

I think the CEO and the Board of Directors need to be transparent and explain the details of the proposed sale, including the why and financial details. If the community understands, perhaps it’ll accept the proposed sale. To date, I have not seen anything except generalized statements.

This whole affair has been handled very poorly by Keiro and frankly, had this been a for-profit corporation, the CEO and board would all have been asked to step down or fired.

My hat’s off to people like Mr. Mo Nishida, whose two recent letters published in The Rafu show his frustration but also his determination to find out the truth along with Mr. Sam Mori. Publishing their phone numbers shows how serious and committed they are not only for the truth but also for the sake of the community. I hope many people will join their cause and stand up for the founders who created Keiro.

I know a little about Keiro as a spot volunteer for about seven years at the Intermediate Care Facility. The staff there, and the volunteers, are very fine and caring people. The residents are treated very respectfully and with great care. What will happen to the staff who have worked there for many years? Will they be thrown under the bus if the sale goes through? And will the residents continue receive the great care they are receiving now?

If not, then the sale should definitely be nixed. There MUST be this guarantee for our elderly for us to accept any sale. A condition of any sale should be to have a board consisting of AJA members of the community (no yes-men/women) who will have some teeth in how the residents should be cared for.

The CEO and the board should hold a town hall meeting to air out the community questions and concerns. I promise not to throw tomatoes or musubis at them.

They should also publish a fact sheet stating the reasons of the proposed sale with all the financial data, what solutions besides selling were considered, and why none of these were viable. This is the least our community deserves after supporting Keiro for many, many years.

If this is not done, then we need to “take it to the streets.” Maybe “Keiro Lives Matter” will be the battle slogan.

If anyone supports the sale of Keiro, I would like to hear from them at this email address,, because absolutely no one I know or have talked to supports this sale.

Thank you for listening,

Dave Watanabe, Pasadena

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