When Joe DiMaggio and his newly wed wife Marilyn Monroe landed in Japan in February 1954, they were overwhelmed by a crowd of over 250 photo-journalists and paparazzi. Although the couple’s privacy was heavily guarded with the restriction of press inside the plane, photographs did not go untaken.
Kashio Aoki, a Pan American Airline steward of precious cargo, asked Joe while they were waiting on the plane if he could take pictures of the lovely couple and Joe consented. Two weeks later, Joe and Marilyn were about to depart Japan and Aoki would meet them again on the plane. This time, with his precious photographs in hand, Aoki politely asked for their autographs. Joe refused but Marilyn was happy to sign, for the Japanese people loved Marilyn. Having the opportunity to meet Marilyn and Joe was a great honor for Aoki.
Aoki kept the photos for 46 years before he contacted Edward Weston to help him release the photos to the public. Weston added the photos to his collection creating a limited edition of 75 for Marilyn's 75th Birthday in 2001.