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Yoko Horimoto, 97-year-old, Madera, CA-born Nisei, and resident of Los Angeles, passed away peacefully at her home on August 13, 2021. She was predeceased by her husband, Susumu Horimoto and survived by her daughters, Jean and Lori; and son, Gary; also survived by many other relatives.
A private service was held on September 9, at Kubota Mortuary, with Rev. Ryuta Furumoto from Senshin Buddhist Temple officiating.
Yoko was born on December 3, 1923 to Gen and Tomi Goto in Madera, California. She was the oldest of three children, which included her brother Tom and sister Keiko. She was raised on a farm and helped with the harvest and other responsibilities. She graduated from Madera Union High School in June, 1941 and while there, participated in many sports. In the early part of 1941, her family was sent to the Fresno Assembly Center, and in 1942 they were relocated to the Jerome Relocation Center in Arkansas where she worked as a stenographer in the relocation office. After Jerome closed, the family was transferred to the Gila Relocation Center, where she worked as a secretary for the Head of the Department of Transportation. When the war ended, she returned to Madera with her family.
Upon her return, she moved to San Francisco, where she attended Haz-More School of Dress. After graduating, she worked as a seamstress for 10 years. She then moved to Los Angeles and worked as a stenographer for the Civil Service and met her husband, Susumu (Sus). She took time off from her job to care for her mother who was very ill. She married Sus on January 23, 1955 in Lodi, California and her mother passed away on the same day.
In 1956 she had a daughter, Jean, followed by a son, Gary, born in 1958 and a daughter, Lori, born in 1960. She was fully involved with their activities such as the PTA, campfire girls, girl scouts, boy scouts and basketball and baseball teams. When her children were older, she went back to work as a secretary at an insurance agency and worked there for 17 years. On February 12, 2001, Sus passed away unexpectedly.
While in retirement she enjoyed volunteering at the Japanese American National Museum (22 years) with her Friday Group, which included teaching origami; was an avid Lakers and Dodgers fan and attended many games; enjoyed her annual trips to Las Vegas and visiting relatives in northern California. In her free time, she enjoyed tending to her flowers in her yard, eating out, going to Farmer’s Market for breakfast, and Sunday dinners with the family.
Yoko passed away peacefully in her sleep in the early morning of August 13, 2021 at her home, surrounded by her children.