Yuriko Lily “Yuri” Torigoe, long-time resident of San Jose, California, passed away peacefully at home on Nov. 1, at the age of 96. She was a piano teacher, church organist/pianist, and devoted mother, grandmother, and great-grandmother.
She was born and raised in Alameda, California. Her parents were immigrants from Japan who ran a floral shop. She entered the University of California in Berkeley after high school but was forced to discontinue her studies because of the wartime relocation of Japanese Americans. She was held in an internment camp, but was granted release to attend the Colorado State College of Education (now the University of Northern Colorado), where she earned a B.A. degree and secondary school teaching credential. While living in Colorado, she met her husband-to-be, Setsuo Ernest (Ernie) Torigoe, who was practicing dentistry in Fort Lupton, Colorado due to the relocation. They married in 1945 and returned to California in 1947 with a 3-month-old child. They settled in San Jose, where they lived for the rest of their lives except for the period from 1951 to 1953 when Ernie served in the U. S. Air Force.
Yuri was a person of many talents. In addition to being mother of four children, she was a piano teacher, giving private lessons at her home for 36 years. She served as organist and pianist at Wesley United Methodist Church in San Jose for many years. Her community service included her contributions as President of the National Guild of Piano Teachers in San Jose and Lincoln Glen PTA President. After her children left home, she earned a Masters in Music at San Jose State University.
She was a skilled seamstress who made many articles of clothing for her family. She traveled widely, covering all fifty states and many international destinations. She kept detailed scrapbooks and photo albums of her family and travels. Other interests included social bridge, attending concerts, knitting, gardening, taking classes, reading, and collecting miniature pianos.
Yuri will be remembered for her many endearing qualities. She was very devoted to her family and approached her many endeavors with great enthusiasm. She was accomplished but most unassuming. She was very petite but had a big heart for others. At this time of remembrance, one of her many aphorisms that comes to mind is “good things come in small packages.”
Her husband of 70 years passed away in 2016. She leaves her children, Wayne (Karen), Kathy, Eric (Gayle), and Marilyn (Neil); grandchildren, Kendra (Enoch), Melanie, Keith, Sharon, Jeff, and Bryan; great-grandchildren, Kayla and Evan; and many other members of her extended family.
In accordance with her wishes, a private family memorial service was held at Wesley United Methodist Church in San Jose. Donations in her memory to Wesley United Methodist Church or your favorite charity would be most appreciated.
Memiko Kushi Hashimoto, 91, passed away peacefully on Nov. 5 in San Luis Obispo, Calif., surrounded by family after a brief illness. Born to Koei and Yaichi Kushi in Montebello, Calif. on Oct. 29, 1927. Her family moved to Japan prior to WWII. In 1948 Memi moved to San Francisco, then later to Livingston, Calif. to work at Livingston Fruit Growers as the Bookkeeper/Secretary where she met Noboru Hashimoto. They married on January 15, 1955. She lived in Winton, Calif. raising four children on the family farm. In later years they moved to Merced, Calif., then Fresno, and ultimately to her daughter Edith’s home in San Luis Obispo, Calif. She was well known to her children, grandchildren and friends for her chocolate chip cookies, brownies, and other tasty treats shipped weekly to college dorms and homes. She loved spending time with family and friends. Survived by husband Noboru Hashimoto, sister Chiseko Nishi, children Harvey & Linda Hashimoto, Casey Hashimoto, Edith (Hashimoto) and Alan Martin, Esther Hashimoto; grandchildren Tad & Tara , Brian, Amy, Kevin, Eric & Jessica, Kyle, Kayla; Great grand-children; Mickayla, and Kaia. She will be missed greatly by everyone she knew. Per Memi’s wishes, no services will be held. In lieu of flowers, please donate to your favorite charity.
March 22, 1931 – October 9, 2018
Shig passed away at his home in San Leandro, CA. He is survived by his wife Namie, his children, Stephanie Naito, Barton Naito and Wendy Samiljan, Tina and Rocky Medeiros and his four grandchildren Daniel Naito, Matthew Medeiros, Emily Naito and Mason Medeiros, his sisters Sumi Okita and Amy Naito, sisters and brothers-in-law Amy Naito, Nana Naito, Ray and Emi Yamanishi, Louie and Irene Yamanishi, Kay Yoshizaki, Sy Yamanishi and Henry Yamaoka and many nieces and nephews. Shig was predeceased by his parents Shigeo and Tsuru Naito, daughter Ellen Naito, siblings Michi Ikeda, Tak Naito, Sets Kimura, Mits Naito, Mari Hiyama, brothers-in-law Toru Ikeda, Kiyo Okita, Roger Hiyama, Akiji Yamanishi, Takeshi Yoshizaki, sister-in-law Helen Yamaoka and father and mother-in-law Tadao and Asayo Yamanishi. Shig was born in Fresno, California on March 22, 1931. He was the fifth of eight children born to Shigeo Naito and Tsuru Kodama. Shig attended Lovell Grammar school in the Cutler-Yettem area of Central California before being sent to Poston Relocation Center where he was interned from 1942 to 1945. While in Poston, Arizona he attended Block III Junior High and one year of High School. In July 1945 the family went to Honeyville, Utah where Shig attended Box Elder High School in Brigham City until the family returned to California in November 1946. Shig graduated from Reedley High School in 1948, Reedley College, AA in 1950 and Woodbury College, BBA in 1953. In 1953 Shig joined the US Army where he was stationed in Kentucky, Indiana and Maryland. Upon receiving an honorable discharge in 1955, Shig returned to California to attended Golden Gate University in San Francisco, graduating with his second BBA in 1957. He worked for L. H. Penney & Company, a CPA firm from 1956 to 1958. In 1958 Shig began a 27-year career at the County of Alameda, he started as an auditor, moved into the newly-created data processing department as a COBOL programmer and rose through various management positions to become the Deputy Chief of Systems, retiring in 1983. His retirement was short lived though, as he soon returned to work for City College of San Francisco as Chief of Systems retiring in 1992. Following his second retirement Shig served on the Grand Jury for Alameda County, Japanese American Citizens League (JACL) Health Benefits Trust – Board of Directors and continued to be active in Wanto Hiroshima Nikkeijin Kai, Eden JACL, Buddhist Church of Oakland and Eden Community Center Activities. Memorial Service were held at the Buddhist Church of Oakland on October 20, 2018.
Mitsuye “Mitzi” Yamamoto
May 31, 1921 – October 15, 2018
Mitsuye Yamamoto, 97, of Patterson passed away peacefully on Monday, Oct. 15 at home.
Born in San Jose on May 31, 1921 to Kaneichi and Hatsuko Yamaichi. She was a longtime Patterson resident for 60 years who farmed alongside her late husband Shig on the Westside. Mitzi met and married her husband of 52 years when she was relocated to the internment camp at Tule Lake. Mitzi looked forward to watching her grandchildren and great-grandchildren participate in sporting events. She enjoyed sewing, knitting, flower arranging and gardening. Mrs. Yamamoto was a member of the Patterson Senior Citizens, Farm Bureau, Patterson Garden Club, C.W.A., Stockton Buddhist Church, San Joaquin Nisei League and an honorary Red-Hatter.
Mrs. Yamamoto is survived by her sons, Toshio Yamamoto of Sacramento, Ken (Pat) Yamamoto of San Jose and Bobby (Karen) Yamamoto of Westley; daughters, Yuri (Ken) Furukawa of San Jose and Kiyo Yamamoto of Newman; brother, Richard Yamaichi of Sacramento; sisters, Yoshiko Ichikawa of Santa Clara and Hinako Uchida of Oakland; eight grandchildren (Hatsumi, Kimiko, Corrin, Jason, Shelby and Keith Yamamoto, Jennifer Gillum and Cindy Dupont) and four great-grandchildren (Clay and Mia Gillum, Jace and Wade Yamamoto). Auntie to many nieces and nephews.
She was preceded in death by her husband Shig Yamamoto and her brothers and sisters: Masaru Yamaichi, Shigeru Yamaichi, Jimi Yamaichi, Meri Nitta, Mumbo Yamaichi and Sue Toyoshima.
A visitation will be held from 5 to 7 p.m., Thursday, Oct. 25 at Hillview Funeral Chapel in Patterson. A Funeral Service will be held at 1 p.m., Friday Oct. 26 at Stockton Buddhist Church, 2820 Shimizu Drive in Stockton. Interment services will follow at 3 p.m. at Patterson District Cemetery, 10800 Highway 33 in Patterson.
Donations may be made to: PRIDE Scholarship – Shigeru and Mitsuye Yamamoto Scholarship, PO Box 1543, Patterson, CA 95363.
Services conducted by Hillview Funeral Chapel, Patterson.