Onoda Hiroo was born in Wakayama Prefecture in 1922. After graduating from Kainan
Secondary School, he was hired by a trading company, which sent him on assignment to Hankou,
China (today Wuhan). In 1944, Onoda matriculated at the Kurume 1st Military Academy. In the
same year, he entered the Futamata Annex of the Japanese Army’s Nakano School. In December
1944, he was sent to the Philippine Islands. In the absence of orders to cease operations, Onoda
continued to perform his duties until he returned to Japan in March 1974. Details of his life
during those 30 years can be found in his writings, Reminiscences of My Life on Lubang Island
and Thirty Years of Solitude. In 1975, Onoda moved to Brazil, where he became a cattle rancher.
In 1984, he opened the Onoda Shizen Juku, a camp for young people in Fukushima Prefecture.
Now 82 years old, Onoda continues to work with young people, to whom he has dedicated his
new book, How Will You Shape Your Future?