After serving in the Korean War, Duane Mann found love while stationed in Japan 70 years ago. But then they lost touch, until now.

Duane Mann's Mom Sabotaged His Relationship

In the years after the Korean War, Duane Mann was stationed in Japan, there he met a lovely woman named Peggy Yamaguchi. They enjoyed going out dancing and talking as best they could through their cultural differences. When Duane ended his tour of duty, he returned, vowing to send for Peggy, who was pregnant at the time.

But don't forget, this was post-World War II, and the two countries had fiercely fought against each other, so when Duane's mom found out he was involved with a Japanese woman, she began burning Peggy's letters when the arrived state side.

Duane, feeling forlorn for not having his letters answered figured Peggy had moved on, and so he did as well.

He met someone else, had children, and forged a new life for himself in his home state of Iowa.

KETV via YouTube
KETV via YouTube
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However, later, his mom admitted burning the letters, and gave him Peggy's final letter, in which she admitted she had lost the baby.

"It was over. It set in, that idea that I abandoned her just wore me out and that's not an honorable thing to do," he told KETV News.

"I think it was a combination of guilt, confusion and sadness," said Duane's son, Brian Mann.

His Search Proved Fruitless In Japan

He tried writing to her last known address, and contacting common friends in Japan, but to no avail. Keep in mind this was way before the internet, and Yamaguchi is a common last name in Japan.

After his wife died, Duane and his children renewed his search using the internet, but still no Peggy.

An Omaha TV Station's Report Kicked Off A World Wide Search

After KETV News aired his story of fruitless search, Japanese media picked up on it, and helped with the search in that country.

And from there the story found its way to Vancouver, Canada and a researcher for the History Channel, Theresa Wong.

"I cannot imagine carrying around that heartbreak for 70 years," Wong said. "I really hope this is just that opportunity to get closure and a release of all those years of worrying about it."

An Old Newspaper Article Reconnected The Couple In The Upper Peninsula

Wong was the one who stumbled upon a 1956 article in the Escanaba Daily Press. The article was about a young Tokyo woman who was recently married to a local man, and who was enjoying life in the north country.

KETV via YouTube
KETV via YouTube
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That woman was Peggy Yamaguchi, now named Peggy Sedenquist after marrying a young Navy man in 1956 and relocating to the UP.

And so this week, at the age of 91, Duane Mann was able to travel to Escanaba and sit down and talk once again with Peggy, and apologize for leaving her alone all those years ago. Peggy, who is also 91, told KETV she was shocked to learn he was still looking for her.

"I'm here to tell you that I didn't abandon you at all. I just couldn't find you," Duane finally told Peggy.

"Thank you for remembering and save all the pictures, you must have loved me," Peggy said and then hugged and kissed Duane.

"I'm here to tell you that I didn't abandon you at all. I just couldn't find you," Duane finally was able to tell Peggy.

"Thank you for remembering and save all the pictures, you must have loved me," Peggy said and then hugged and kissed Duane.

There will be no renewed love after their meeting, Peggy's husband is still alive, still the two will remain friends, and Duane finally got the closure he wanted.

"It's really been a freeing experience for me," he said.

KETV via YouTube
KETV via YouTube
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