Yoshinobu Oyakawa, born on the Kona side of the Big Island of Hawai'i, was a swimming star at Hilo High School and Ohio State. He won a gold medal in the 100-meter backstroke at the Olympic Games in Helsinki, Finland. He was the last of the great "straight-arm-pull" backstrokers.
Oyakawa, along with Ford Konno, were voted captains of the 22 member 1956 U.S. Mens Olympic Swim Team.
He is a member of the International Swimming Hall of Fame.
The last racial and ethnic barriers to naturalization were removed on June 26 - 27, with the passage of the Immigration and Naturalization Act of 1952.