Stories from Enewetak: Lina Yota


The reason my parents got angry with one another is that my mom had an affair and that is why my dad left us. When dad left us, we did not like it but mom said dad had to leave the house. I hated the situation so much that I did not eat, and I did not listen to anything my mom said to me. When I heard that dad had a relationship with some woman, I also felt bad. When I go to school, dad comes and picks me up to drop me off at school. When I saw my stepmother I felt hatred and hated her. My stepmother was so very generous. When I got to fourth grade, I spoke with dad and told him to return to mom, and dad returned to mom. That is why mom and dad got married because I told dad to return to mom so that they can get married. So dad informed his parents that he is going to marry my mom, and they said they were ok, and I was so very happy I did my best in school. God bless you and me.

Interviews with Elders:

I am Lina’s grandfather. I was born in April 07, 1957 in Ujelang where I also grew up.

When I grew up and began to know and think, I saw that the Ujelang people had to work hard to feed themselves. I did not know that American had moved people Enewetak to Ujelang, I only knew that the people faced a long period of starvation on Ujelang. The traditional food I grew up eating included coconut meat, fish, clam, and sometimes breadfruit, but when we did not have these on hand, well, we only ate fish and coconut meat. I heard from older generations that supply ships took longer to bring supplies - maybe 6 to 8 months between ships. On Ujelang at that time, there was not enough food because the Americans relocated the people from Enewetak to Ujelang. Enewetak is our home island. During the starvation, no one took time off except for Sunday. Whoever rested from gathering food, well, his or her family would be really hungry. Even the women would be hungry during that time.

It is a long story about Ujelang but I summarized the story since the time when they began to think independently.


Unin an kar mama im baba illu ippān doon kōnke mama ekar bar ellolo jān baba im unin an baba etal jān kōm. Im ke baba ej etal jān kōm ikar lukkuun jab bwe mama ekar ba baba en etal jān m̗ween̗. Jon̄an aō kar kūtōtō ikar jab m̗ōn̄a im ikar jab ron̄jake ta ko mama ej ba n̄an n̄a. Im ke ij ron̄ kōn baba ke ebar ellolo jān mama ekar bar nana aō mour. Im ke ij itok im jikuul̗, baba ekar bar itok im bok n̄a n̄an m̗ōn im̗ōn ke ij loe stepmother eo aō ikar lukkuun kūtōtōiki. Jon̄an an em̗m̗an kar step mother eo aō. Im ke ij class 4 ikar ba n̄an baba bwe en ro̗o̗l tok n̄an mama im baba ekar ro̗o̗l l̗o̗k n̄an mama. Im unin an mama im baba m̗are ikar ba n̄an baba im mama bwe ren m̗are im baba ekar ba n̄an jinen im jemān kōnke ej itōn m̗areiki mama im rōkar ba em̗m̗an im jon̄an an aō em̗m̗ōn̗ōn̗ō ikar kate eō jikuul̗. Anij en kōjeraam̗m̗an eok im eō.

Interviews with Elders:

N̄a Jim̗m̗aan Lina.Juon eo me ekar l̗otak ilo aeto̗ in Ujelang. Iiō eo ikar l̗otak ej April 07, 1957. Ikar dik im rūtto l̗o̗k ilo aelōn̄ in Ujelang.

Ke n̄a ij rūtto l̗o̗k im jino aō jel̗ā l̗ōmn̗ak ikar lo an armej in Ujelang lukkuun l̗ap aer jerbal kije-er m̗ōn̄ā. Ijjan̄in kar mel̗el̗e ke Ri-Pālle kar kōm̗akūt armej in Enewetak l̗o̗k n̄an Ujelang, ijel̗ā wōt ke ebwe do kar iioon n̄ūta l̗apl̗ap ko ilo aelōn̄ in Ujelang. M̗ōn̄ā ka ikar dik im rūtto l̗o̗k kaki rej waini, ek, mejānwōd, jet iien mā, ak n̄e ejjel̗o̗k men kein, ekwe elukkuun ejjel̗o̗k im kōmij m̗ōn̄ā wōt ek im waini wōt. Unin an l̗ap n̄ūta ilo tōre kein kōnke ikar ron̄ ippān armej in jem̗aan ilo kar tōre ko l̗o̗k rej ba el̗ap kōtaan tim̗a jab itok n̄an aelōn̄ in Ujelang emaron̄ 6-8 allōn̄ innām ej kab wōr tim̗a, ilo aelōn̄ in Ujelang ilo tōre ko ekar jab lukkuun l̗ap m̗ōn̄ā in aelōn̄ kein kōnke Ri-Pālle rej kab kōm̗akūt er jān Ujelang n̄an Enewetak. Lukkuun l̗ām̗orān eo aer ilo tōre in n̄ūta ko ilo iien aer kakkije, ijello̗kun wōt raan in Jabōt jabdewōt eo enaaj kakkije im jab kakijen ekwe enaaj kwōle baam̗le eo an bareinwōt kōrā ro ilo tōre ko.

Ekwe an long story ilo aelōn̄ in Ujelang ak ikar letok bwebwenato in jān ke raar jino jel̗ā l̗ōmn̗ak.

Share Post:

Dashboard Menu