OBITUARY: Tsukasa Matsueda

Tsukasa Matsueda. photo by Brad Shirakawa

Tsukasa Matsueda passed away on Jan. 28, leaving behind a legacy of work in scholarship and community service.

He taught at Sequoia Union High School in Redwood City, Calif. for 33 years and also lectured at Stanford University and San Jose State University.

He is the author of “Issei: The Shadow Generation,” a book citing the contribution Issei made to Japanese American culture since their arrival, through the incarceration camps and beyond.

He was raised in San Mateo, Calif., and at the age of 16, incarcerated along with other Japanese Americans at the Stockton Assembly Center, to the concentration camps at Rohwer, Ark., and Tule Lake, Calif. After his release from the concentration camps, he was drafted into the U.S. military where he served in the 525th Military Intelligence Unit.

He received a Bachelor of Arts from the University of California, Berkeley; a Master of Arts from the San Francisco State University, and a Doctor of Education degree from the University of Massachusetts.

His teaching career also included an opportunity to teach abroad as a Fulbright Exchange Teacher to Japan. He taught English at the University of Niigata and the attached junior high school for two years.

After his retirement from teaching, Matsueda used his understanding of the Japanese language to work with San Jose Japantown’s Yu-Ai-Kai/Japanese American Community Senior Service as a case manager for its Japanese-speaking clientele.

He is survived by his wife of 54 years, June Matsueda, sister Yori Kawakita (Yoneo); brother Kanow Matsueda; children Robert Matsueda (Ranko) and Julie Matsueda-Osaki (Jon); grandchildren Ken Matsueda, Mika Osaki and Lee Osaki.

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