A memorial service will be held for Richard Sondo Park at the Borthwick Mortuary, 1330 Maunakea St., on Saturday, Jan. 22, beginning at 11 a.m. Park, 91, died on Jan. 1 at his Tracy, Calif. home attended by his son and daughter-in-law, Linton and Mary Beth Park.
Born in Korea in 1919, Park became a naturalized citizen of the United States in the 1950s, in Honolulu, where he lived until 2002, when he moved to California.
The youngest of six children born to father Sai Whan Park and mother Sunie Lee Park of Korea, Park is survived by his older brother, Walter Park of Honolulu, HI. Upon entering English standard school in Honolulu, Sondo chose for himself the name Richard, after Richard the Lion Hearted, legendary king of England.
Park married his high school sweetheart, Madeline Louise Peters in 1942. They both enjoyed performing in high school musicals by Gilbert and Sullivan, which started them on a life-long ministry of singing and playing music.
A committed Christian and self-taught musician, harmonica player and tenor soloist, Park directed choirs for Kakaako Mission and Honolulu Bible Church, where he led worship service singing, taught Sunday School and served as deacon. He also sang and played for churches and community organizations with his wife and their three children as the Park Chorale Group.
Park worked as a bookkeeper and accountant for Von Hamm Young and Highway Construction Company until his retirement in 2001. During that time, he also served as a member of the construction industry men’s choral group.
More recently Mr. Park’s harmonica medleys could be heard at the First Baptist Church in Tracy, assisted living facilities, Tracy restaurants, medical offices, political events and for three consecutive years — 2008, 2009 and 2010 — at the Tracy Fourth of July “Day in the Park” celebration at Lincoln Park, as well as generally all around town.
Richard and Madeline Park are survived by three children who reside in California: Dicksie Park Tamanaha of Santa Rosa, Linton Park of Tracy (wife Mary Beth Park), and Dana Park of Kelseyville; seven grandchildren and eight great grandchildren. Grandchildren are Christopher (Fen) Tamanaha, John Tamanaha, Noelle Hense, Soonie Landschoot, Toby Park, Kristina Vommero and Tracy Olsen. Great grandchildren are Sierra and Hannah Hense, Samantha and Dylan Park, Logan and Connor Olsen, Alexa Kiyomi Tamanaha and Melia Landschoot.
Another memorial service will be held for Park on Jan. 29 in California. Burial will be in Hawaiian Memorial Park Cemetery in Kaneohe, HI.