Takeru Okamoto, 83, of Castroville, passed away peacefully Sunday, April 14, 2013, at Salinas Valley Memorial Hospital following a stroke. He was born January 14, 1930 in Kagoshima, Japan, the youngest child of Shinkichi and Oto Okamoto.
In 1955, Takeru immigrated to the United States, first to Visalia, then to Los Angeles where he worked as a gardener. He married Itsuko Hamada in 1958 and they started a family. In 1973, the family moved to Castroville, where Takeru and Itsuko started a flower growing business and continued until he retired in 1994.
Takeru was a member of the Watsonville Buddhist Temple, Japanese American Citizens League, Kagoshima Kenjinkai, and Nansatsu Doshi kai.
Takeru is survived by his wife of 55 years, Itsuko; sons, Michael, Charles, Frank, and Roy; sisters, Toki Arimura and Tsuya Okamoto.
He was preceded in death by his father and mother; brother, Hisao Okamoto and sister, Hine Kajisa.
Memorial service will be held Sunday, April 21, 2013 at 2:00 p.m., at the Watsonville Buddhist Temple.
Arrangements have been entrusted to the care of Ave Maria Memorial Chapel, Watsonville; www.avemariamemorialchapel.com