Monday, Apr. 8, 2019
11:30 AM
Miramar National Cemetery
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Akira Takeshita

1925 - 2019 Obituary Condolences
Akira Takeshita Obituary
Akira Jumbo' Takeshita August 3, 1925 - February 4, 2019 San Diego Akira Takeshita, known as Jumbo to those on the baseball field and Aki to everyone else, was born in Coronado on August 3, 1925. When he wasn't with his wife, Helen, kids or grandkids, he was probably throwing a game-winning pitch, sinking a hole-in-one or bowling another strike. The longtime athlete died on February 4th due to complications caused by Alzheimer's. He was 93. Aki met Helen at Poston Internment Camp in Arizona when he was 15. After leaving camp, he joined the Army and despite the long distance, continued to court Helen until he returned to California. They were married on March 5, 1949 and raised six children. A born organizer, Aki started the Nisei Golf Club, arranging and chairing their golf tournaments, coordinated the annual JACL (Japanese American Citizen League) picnics and was instrumental in establishing the JACL Bowling and Basketball Leagues. He was also the first advisor of the San Diego JACL Youth Chapter. He was recognized for his numerous contributions to the youth group when he received the 2011 Kansha Award from the Japanese American Historical Society. Retiring from landscape gardening at the age of 85, Aki devoted himself to caring for Helen until her passing in 2012. Soon after, the Glenner Center in Hillcrest became a daily part of Aki's life. At the center, he resumed bowling strikes and knocking in frequent hole-in-ones on a smaller scale and became quite the singer, dancer and trivia buff. He is survived by his five children, Janet Endo, Gary Takeshita, Gail Owashi, Rod Takeshita, and Eric Takeshita, and six grandchildren, who know him as "the best grandpa in San Diego." The family will hold a military service at Miramar National Cemetery on April 8, 2019 at 11:30 a.m. In lieu of Koden or flowers, the family requests donations be made to the George Glenner Alzheimer's Family Centers, Inc., Hillcrest Center, "In Memory of Akira Aki' Takeshita," 2765 Main Street, Suite A, Chula Vista, CA 91911.
Published in The San Diego Union Tribune from Feb. 10 to Mar. 31, 2019
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