OBITUARY: Harry Harumi Higaki

Harry Harumi Higaki

Aug. 29, 1920 – Dec. 16, 2021

HIGAKI, HARRY, 101, of Hillsborough, CA, passed away peacefully in his home on December 16, 2021 with his children by his side. Born in San Francisco, CA on August 29, 1920, Harry was the eldest son of the late Nobuo Higaki and Motoko Kubouchi, and he graduated from Sequoia High School in Redwood City (1938) and attended Heald Business College in San Francisco.

In 1942, following Executive Order 9066, Harry was forced to lease the family business and relocate his family to Kimberly, ID, where he was drafted to the Military Intelligence Service and sent to Fort Snelling, MN for language training. In 1947, he was honorably discharged as a U.S. Army Sergeant after serving in the Counter Intelligence Corps in Kobe, Japan, where he met and married the love of his life, the late Sachiko Higaki, on October 7, 1949. Harry and Sachiko were married for sixty-seven years.

In the post-war years, Harry incorporated and expanded the family nursery into Bay City Flower Company, which distributed flowers nationwide. To the end, he remained grateful for the company’s long-time employees, customers, and vendors. In 1994, he was named Flower Marketer of the Year by the Produce Marketing Association. He was also named Farmer of the Year (1990, 1998) by the San Mateo County Farm Bureau and Half Moon Bay Coastside Chamber of Commerce.

In 2011, Harry received the Nisei Soldiers of World War II Congressional Gold Medal in belated recognition of his service to the United States. He was a man of steadfast faith and a founding member of Peninsula Free Methodist Church (now Peninsula Hope Church).
Harry was a devoted, loving father and a friend to many. He is survived by his children and their spouses, Harrison Higaki (Heidi), Sharon Okamoto (John), and Audrey Sakai (Perry), seven grandchildren and their spouses, and ten great-grandchildren. He is also survived by his siblings, Naomi Higaki, Aiko Joo, and Emiko Hamai. Harry was predeceased by his beloved wife Sachiko, his daughter Lois Toyo Higaki, his parents, and his brothers, Juichi and Shigeru.
Donations in honor of his memory may be made to Peninsula Hope Church, Redwood City or the Japanese American Citizens League.

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