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1917 - 2018 Obituary Condolences
Toshiko Nakamura

June 6, 1917 - September 21, 2018

TOSHIKO NAKAMURA, 101, of Palo Alto passed away peacefully at home on September 21, 2018. She was predeceased by her husband of 50 years, Naoki Nakamura, and two infants, Naomi and Osamu. She will be mourned and greatly missed by her children Robert Nakamura (Bernadette), Yuko Kain (Philip), Eko Prasad (Nandi), and Patrick Nakamura (Susan); nine grandchildren; seven great-grandchildren; her brother-in-law Shigeto Suzuki; nieces and nephews; friends and neighbors; and especially her loving and loyal caregiver Elvira Gica.

Mrs. Nakamura was born on June 6, 1917 in Richmond, California, but left for Japan to attend school as a child. When she was 18 years old, she returned to California and resided in San Francisco for many years. During World War II, she was caught up in the internment as a young wife and mother and spent four years in Topaz, Utah. Upon release she and her family migrated to Chicago, and after 16 years of recovering economically returned to California.

In 1961, the family settled in Palo Alto where Mrs. Nakamura worked as a seamstress at the Colony Shop at Stanford Shopping Center and Surrey Shop in Menlo Park. After retirement, she became active in her church, Aldersgate United Methodist Church of Palo Alto, where she helped teach cooking classes. She loved music and became a certified teacher of shamisen, a Japanese stringed instrument, with the Fujimoto Kai of San Francisco. She also learned the taishogoto, another stringed instrument, with her good friends at Palo Alto Taishogoto. Her travels included a cruise to Alaska and a tour of Israel and Egypt. In her spare time, she crocheted 80 afghan blankets.

Toshiko was known for her high fashion, insatiable curiosity, enormous energy, and great generosity. She embraced everyone in her orbit with copious amounts of home cooking, lively conservation, and a big smile. She was a small woman with a huge presence, and she leaves a void in the lives of all who loved her.

A celebration of her life will be held on Friday, October 12 at noon at Aldersgate United Methodist Church in Palo Alto. In lieu of gifts or flowers, you may make a donation in her name to Aldersgate United Methodist Church.


Published in San Francisco Chronicle on Oct. 10, 2018
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