Susumu Yamada

Posted On April 6th, 2013 -

Age 94, passed away of natural causes on Valentine’s Day 2013 in Honolulu, HI. He was born May 6, 1918 to Tomijiro and Man Yamada in Seattle, WA. He and his brothers Noboru, Isamu and Manabu (all now deceased) mainly grew up in north Seattle, where they worked the family farm and greenhouse. He graduated from Seattle’s Lincoln High School in 1936. In 1941, Susumu at age 22 became the first American-born Japanese citizen (Nisei) in the state of Washington to volunteer for service in the US army, garnering a photo and article in the Seattle Post Intelligencer (January 22, 1941). During World War II he served in Europe with the acclaimed all-Japanese-American 442nd Regiment. After the war Susumu made the army his career. He met his wife Elizabeth Hisako Suzuki of Hawaii after the war while they were both working for US occupation forces in Japan. They married at the U.S. Consulate in Kobe, Japan, on December 19, 1958 and made their home in Honolulu. After retiring with the rank of Major in 1961 after 20 years of military service, Susumu worked as an Intelligence Operations Specialist 1961-1978 for CSC. Liz passed away May 22, 1999. Susumu is survived by his nieces and nephews: Lynn Yamada Lass in Madison WI; Gail Yamada, Donna Su Yamada-Bolima, and Douglas Yamada in Seattle; Isamu Yamada in Spokane, WA; David Yamada in Nagoya, Japan; and Anne Teruya, Susan Kunitake, Phyllis Nomura, Ronald Suzuki, Amy Suzuki, and David Suzuki in Oahu, Hawaii. Susumu’s ashes will be inurned with military honors at the National Cemetery of the Pacific at Punchbowl in Honolulu at 10:30 am on April 4, 2013. Flowers or cards to the family may be sent care of Hosoi Mortuary of Honolulu.

- Denotes U.S. Military Veteran