Mr. Speaker, last month, through the efforts of Richmond's sister city of Wakayama, Japan, and people like Steveston's own Jim Kojima, one of the world's largest tall ships, the majestic Kaiwo Maru, arrived in Steveston Harbour.
Many of Steveston's early Japanese settlers came from Wakayama in the late 1880s. They formed the Japanese Fishermen's Benevolent Society, and together they built a hospital, school, and martial arts centre. Today the Japanese community is a strong and tangible presence in Steveston, proud of their Japanese heritage, yet fiercely Canadian.
I wish to thank the Japanese community for their many contributions to Steveston and salute Jim Kojima for his dedication and commitment to preserving Steveston's Japanese history and culture.