YATABE, AYAKO JOYCE, 84, was born on May 24, 1929 in Fresno, Calif.. She passed away peacefully at home, surrounded by loved ones on Feb. 8, 2014. She is survived by her children, sons, Steven (Cathy), Michael, David (Debbie), daughter, Darlene (Marvin) Wong and seven grandchildren, Eric, Stephanie and Jessica Yatabe, Melissa and Melanie Wong, Jennifer and Keith Yatabe. She is also survived by her sister, Setsuko Minabe, as well as many nieces and nephews.
Ayako was a sweet and loving wife, mother and grandmother who enjoyed sports and playing bingo. She was an excellent softball pitcher and also played basketball for her high school team. She enjoyed watching professional and college sports as well as following her children’s and grandchildren’s teams.
Ayako spent her life caring for her children, in-laws, grandchildren and husband, Joe. She passed her baking skills on to her daughter and granddaughters. She was very artistic and enjoyed drawing with her grandchildren. She also taught her grandchildren many card games when babysitting.
Ayako was an active member of the Women’s group at church and was an expert at making the tsukemono (pickled cabbage) and curry for the bazaar fundraisers. She enjoyed their many luncheons and outings. She will truly be missed by family and friends.
A Memorial Service will be held on Saturday, March 8th at 2:00 p.m. at the Berkeley Higashi Honganji Buddhist Temple at 1524 Oregon Street in Berkeley. In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to the Berkeley Higashi Honganji Buddhist Temple.