JAPANESE AMERICAN VETERANS ASSOCIATION
1666 K Street,NW, Suite 500, Washington,D.C. 20006, c/o Gerald Yamada, Esq.
IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Vol. II
January 7, 2008 No. 51
CONTACT: Terry Shima (301-987-6746; email@example.com
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THE LYMAN BROTHERS OF HAWAII, BOTH WEST POINT GRADUATES, ARE THE FIRST ASIAN HAWAIIAN PACIFIC ISLAND AMERICANS TO GAIN GENERAL’S RANK.
Japanese American Veterans Association
[JAVA is grateful to Ms. Daisy Matsushita and Ms Lynn K. Elia, Registrar at Lyman Museum, both of Hilo, Hawaii, and to Charles B. Lyman III of Maui Meadows Farms, West Chester, Pennsylvania, for their research and assistance.]
Brigadier General Albert Kualii Brickwood Lyman, USA, and Brigadier General Charles Reed Bishop Lyman, USA, brothers born in Paauhau, Hamakua Coast, Hawaii, were the first ethnic Hawaiian and the first Asian-Hawaiian-Pacific Islander American (AHPIA) to attain the rank of general or admiral in the U.S. Armed Forces. This was achieved during World War II. The present count is that 77 AHPIAs have been promoted to generals and admirals, including GEN Eric Shinseki of Kauai, Hawaii, who wore four stars as the U.S. Army’s 34th Chief of Staff. Of the 77, 49 served in the U.S. Army, 12 in the U.S. Navy, 15 in the U.S. Air Force, and one in the U.S. Marines. Broken down in another way, 20 are Chinese Americans, 6 Filipino Americans, 18 Hawaii Pacific Islands, and 33 Japanese Americans.
Albert and Charles attended schools in Hilo and the Kamehameha and Punahou schools in Honolulu and graduated from the U.S. Military Academy at West Point, New York. From a family of 15 siblings, Albert and Charles are the grandsons of David Belden Lyman, a Protestant missionary from New England who settled in the Hilo, Hawaii area. They are also descendents of Kualii, high chief of Oahu. Their nephew, Richard Lyman, Jr. was a trustee of Bishop Estate in Honolulu, Hawaii. The Lyman House Memorial Museum in Hilo, the repository of the history of Lyman family, is open to the public.
BG Albert K. B. Lyman
BG Albert Lyman (May 5, 1885 – August 13, 1942) graduated from West Point with honors, No. 15 in his class of 103, with a major in engineering. During his 33 years in the US Army, Albert had 25 assignments in 12 states and four overseas posts. His overseas posts were Panama, France, Cuba and the Philippines.
Albert’s assignment in May 1940 at Schofield Barracks, Oahu, Hawaii, where, as a full colonel, he was commanding officer of the 3rd Engineers. He had previously served there in 1913 as a junior officer. He was also responsible for construction projects, thereby virtually performing two full-time jobs. He was promoted to Brigadier General on August 11, 1942, and died two days later. He was stricken at the home of his brother-in-law and died before medical help could reach him.
Among his numerous awards, Albert was awarded the Distinguished Service Medal posthumously for his service from July 1940 to August 1942 for completion of “construction of defense projects before the anticipated completion dates.” On April 19, 1943, the Hawaii State legislature declared that the main passenger terminal of the Hilo International Airport be called the “General Lyman Terminal.” The military schools he attended were the U.S. Army Engineering School and the Army Industrial College.
BG Charles R. B. Lyman
BG Charles Lyman (August 20, 1888 – April 15, 1981) graduated from West Point on June 12, 1913. During his 36 years in the Army, Charles had assignments in 9 states and three overseas posts, the latter of which were Australia, New Guinea and the Philippines. He was the second AHPIA to be accorded the rank of general or admiral.
While he loved horses and participated in the U.S. Olympic Equestrian Team, his duty was almost wholly with the infantry. In July 1941, shortly after Japan attacked Pearl Harbor, Charles, a full colonel, was appointed military governor of Maui, Lanai and Molokai. After 11 months in that position, he was deployed to Australia as assistant division commander of the 32nd Infantry Division. He was in the first group of troops which attacked Tanah Merah Bay, Dutch New Guinea. He personally directed front line units, which seized Hollandia.
Charles was promoted to brigadier general in 1944 and served as commanding general of the 32nd Army Division which, in June 1945, was deployed in Luzon and subsequently in the Leyte campaigns, Philippines. The war ended at this point, and Charles participated in the signing of the peace treaty in Baguio, Philippines. Charles’ decorations included the Combat Infantryman’s Badge, Silver Star for gallantry in leading his troops in the Dutch New Guinea invasion, the Legion of Merit with oak leaf cluster, the Bronze Star with oak leaf cluster, and 4 campaign ribbons.
In 1946, following his retirement, Charles and his wife moved to West Chester, Pennsylvania where they operated the Maui Meadow Farms, the oldest working thoroughbred farm in Pennsylvania, to raise thoroughbred horses. They had one son, Charles Jr. The Farms is currently run by Charles B. Lyman, III (firstname.lastname@example.org). 30